News in Asia

Welcome to another week of news from Asia. Happy reading!

Afghan officials have claimed that Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar died two years ago in a hospital. Even with Omar presumed dead, his power was waning with ISIS gaining influence in the country.

In light of Omar’s death, planned peace talks with the Taliban were cancelled.

Also, in regards to any peace talks with the Taliban, the big question is, who is now in charge of the Taliban?

Beijing “won” the bid to host the 2022 Winter Olympics. Saying they won is relative however since almost all the previous cities in contention dropped out, citing the astronomical cost of hosting the Games.

An estimated 700 students climbed the barricades at the Ministry of Education in Taiwan to protest textbooks they say promote a “one-China” policy. If you feel like singing or humming, “Do You Hear The People Sing” from Les Mis, don’t let me stop you.

Chinese artist Ai WeiWei was denied a six-month British visa because they said he failed to disclose a criminal conviction. However, WeiWei was held for 81 days, but never charged with a crime.

The Chinese stock market dropped sharply twice this week.

The man behind the 1993 Mumbai bombings was executed this past week. The Indian government rarely carries out the death penalty; three people have been executed since 2004.

India will become the most populous nation in the world sooner than experts predicted.

Over a year after the flight disappeared, debris from Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 was discovered off a small island in the Indian Ocean. The Malaysian government has asked for help with widening the search.

This story about self-described abolitionists working to end human trafficking takes place in Mexico, but references organizations and tactics used in Southeast Asian countries.

Myanmar granted amnesty to 7,000 political prisoners, some who are Chinese citizens jailed for illegal logging.

A fact I did not know; English is Pakistan’s official language. Well, not anymore; the Pakistani government is moving to switch the country’s official language from English to Urdu.

No new cases of MERS were reported in the last three weeks, so South Korean officials have declared the country free from the disease.

Finally, though many find the project problematic, “Humans of New York” is currently in Pakistan. You can see the photos and stories on the official Facebook page.


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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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