News in Asia Is Going Country by Country

This week’s news from Asia will focus on stories from individual countries. Some will just have one story; others will have several. So here we go…

Afghanistan

The two men locked in a race for the Afghan presidency have come closer to an agreement on a unity government. Talks at the presidential palace between Dr. Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai and Dr. Abdullah Abdullah have been described as fruitful.

In “I hate the world news,” a 27-year-old female student journalist named Palwasha Tokhi was killed in Northern Afghanistan. There was no reported motive and her murderer is still at large.

India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Indian Muslims would reject al Qaeda’s efforts at recruitment. Earlier in the month, al Qaeda had announced they were forming a branch in the world’s second most populous nation.

China has agreed to resolve a border dispute with India. Well, that’s nice of them. Even nicer is the agreement signed on Thursday that states China will invest a bunch of money for India’s infrastructure over the next five years.

A NGO is trying get health information to pregnant women through the use of technology. Arman has registered an estimated 3000 women to receive messages twice a week via mobile phones at specified times with reminders and health information.

HBIC award this week goes to Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone.

Pakistan

The new head of Pakistan’s powerful Inter-Service Intelligence (think CIA for us) is expected to be announced soon.

Australia

After the arrests of suspected ISIL agents, said to be planning to carry out random attacks, the Australian government remains on high alert. Ordinary Australian citizens who also happen to be Muslim have reported an increase of harassment and brutal tactics by government forces.

Thailand

In other terrible news, apparently wearing a bikini makes you more susceptible to violence. Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha announced that wearing a bikini can make you vulnerable… unless you’re ugly. The statement was made after the bodies of two British tourists were found murdered on the island of Koh Tao.

Fiji

Coup leader Frank Bainimarama has declared victory in the first Fijian election in eight years. Bainimarama had 59 percent of the vote with 88 percent of polls reporting. A multi-national observer group declared the election credible.

Sports!

Not related to an individual country, but the 2014 Asian Games are currently taking place in Incheon, South Korea September 19 – October 4. Here is a list of current medal tallies (shout out to South Korea for trailing China by one medal for the lead.)

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Stephens

Florida girl, would-be world traveler and semi-permanent expat. Her main strategy of life is to throw out the nets and hope something useful comes back, but many times it's just an old shoe. She also really, really hates winter and people who are consistently late.

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