News in Asia

This week’s news roundup includes various protests, ghost ships and the remembrance of the horrific attack on a school in Pakistan.

It’s the one year anniversary of the attack on a school in Peshawar, Pakistan that killed 144, mostly students. DAWN has a photo essay of 144 stories from that day.

So-called North Korean “ghost ships” have been washing on the shores of Japan at an increased rate. Most have bodies in varying states of decay. Some experts say they’re North Korean defectors; others say they’re fisherman who have been forced further out to make government quotas.

Protests are continuing in South Korea. Thousands donned masks and called for President Park Geun-hye’s resignation. Many are say they are there to protest regressive labor laws and curbs to free speech.

Heavy rains and flooding have killed 280 people in Chennai in southern India.

At the climate change summit in Paris, India has been pushing back, saying that “developing countries need room to grow” and rich nations like the U.S. should lead the way in preventing further climate change. Their rationale is that limiting coal production will hurt the poor in their country and others.

In related environmental news, Pakistan has been declared the country most affected by climate change according to the Global Climate Risk Index.

Japanese whaling ships have set off for their annual hunt in Antarctica, despite global opposition.

In “humans are terrible” news, a doctor in Cambodia was sentenced to 25 years in prison for infecting 200 people with HIV.

Vietnam just passed legislation to protect transgender rights, though some don’t think it goes far enough. The new law legalizes gender reassignment surgery and legally recognizes the gender of any person whose undergone reassignment surgery. However, the law doesn’t take into account forced sterilization of transgender persons.

Groups of Nepali people living in India are protesting India’s blockade of Nepal. Millions of children are at risk according to UNICEF due to shortages of food and medicines.

The former military leader of Myanmar has pledged to support Aung San Suu Kyi should she become the country’s next leader. Aung’s party won the recent election by a landslide, though Aung herself cannot become president due to a constitutional amendment, but there’s been a push to have the amendment changed.

The Thai king celebrated his 88th birthday as the world’s longest reigning monarch.


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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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