India | Powerful Tamil politician cleared of corruption 

An appeals court in southern India acquitted powerful regional politician Jayaram Jayalalitha of corruption charges yesterday, clearing the way for her to return to public office. Supporters from Jayalalitha’s party cheered,

Human trafficking | 1,600 Rohingya, others land in Indonesia and Malaysia 

About 1,600 Rohingya and Bangladeshi refugees have landed in Malaysia and Indonesia in the past day, apparently after human traffickers abandoned their virtual floating prison ships and left the passengers to

Philippines | Typhoon leaves 2 dead from electrocution

A powerful typhoon that slammed into the northeastern tip of the Philippines left at least two people dead and prompted nearly 3,500 residents to flee to shelters following warnings to evacuate coastal

Nepal | Portuguese travelers turn into aid agency after quake

They arrived in Nepal as backpackers a day before a deadly earthquake that flattened large swaths of this impoverished Himalayan nation. In the days since the disaster, they’ve transformed themselves

Philippines | Typhoon slams into northern tip; 2,500 evacuated

A powerful typhoon slammed into the northeastern tip of the Philippines yesterday, as about 2,500 residents in two provinces huddled in shelters following warnings by officials to evacuate coastal and mountainous villages. Typhoon

Indonesia | 500 Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar wash to shore

Boats carrying about 500 members of Myanmar’s long-persecuted Rohingya Muslim community washed to shore in western Indonesia yesterday, with some of the people in need of medical attention, a migration

North Korea | Ballistic missile test greets US diplomatic overture 

North Korea greeted a U.S. diplomatic overture with a fresh show of force, seemingly testing the Obama administration’s resolve for new nuclear talks. After three years of diplomatic deadlock, the U.S.

NORTH KOREA | EXPATRIATE LABOUR: Pyongyang seeks profit from overseas labors

As the fierce Arabian sun beat down on the construction site in the summer of 2012, pushing the temperature beyond the thermometer’s upper limit of 50C, the site supervisor began

North Korea | For most, online shopping not just a click away 

Online shopping has arrived in North Korea, though it’s as isolated from the rest of the world as the country itself, and the vast majority of North Koreans lack the technology

Singapore | Teen pleads not guilty over online video

A Singaporean teenager pleaded not guilty yesterday to two charges over an online video he posted that was critical of Christianity and the nation’s late founding prime minister, Lee Kuan

Japan | Zoo apologizes for naming newborn monkey Charlotte

A Japanese zoo has apologized for naming a baby monkey Charlotte after the newborn British princess following complaints at home. The Takasakiyama Natural Zoological Garden said yesterday it was considering renaming

Afghanistan | Judge sentences 4 to death in mob killing of woman 

An Afghan court yesterday convicted and sentenced four men to death for their role in the brutal mob killing of a woman in Kabul in March — a slaying that

India | Bollywood star Salman Khan sentenced to 5 years for hit-and-run

One of India’s biggest and most popular movie stars, Salman Khan, was sentenced to five years in jail yesterday on charges of running over five men sleeping on a sidewalk

Afghanistan | Poppy farmers say new seeds will boost opium output

It’s the cash crop of the Taliban and the scourge of Afghanistan — the country’s intractable opium cultivation. This year, many Afghan poppy farmers are expecting a windfall as they

Human trafficking | Thai police find new prisoner camps; crackdown intensifies

Police found two more camps yesterday believed to have held human trafficking victims in southern Thailand — one recently abandoned and the other containing a buried skeleton — days after

Thailand | 87-year-old king makes rare public appearance 

Thailand’s revered King Bhumibol Adulyadej made a rare public appearance yesterday to mark the 65th anniversary of his coronation. All television stations carried the event live, as the 87-year-old monarch emerged

The Buzz | UN official praises China’s assistance to Nepal after quake

The leader of the United Nations Development Program has praised China’s relief efforts in Nepal and said the country’s importance to global development will only grow. Helen Clark, the UNDP administrator,

Nepal | Everest climbing season likely over

Sherpas in Nepal have refused to rebuild a climbing route on Mount Everest that was destroyed by an earthquake-triggered avalanche more than one week ago, a decision which will likely end this

North Korea | Pyongyang officially squelches speculation of Kim trip

North Korea announced yesterday that the head of its parliament will attend this month’s Victory Day celebration in Moscow, squelching speculation that supreme leader Kim Jong Un would use the

Human trafficking | Thailand arrests 4 following unearthing of mass jungle grave

Thai police arrested three local officials and a Myanmar national they alleged yesterday were involved in trafficking and holding Rohingya Muslims for ransom at a jungle camp where 26 bodies

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