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BC-AS--Asian News Digest, AS

March 28, 2015


SEAFOOD FROM SLAVES — The number of foreign fishermen stranded on several remote eastern Indonesian islands has spiraled to 4,000, including some revealed in an Associated Press investigation to have been enslaved. Many are migrant workers abandoned by their boat captains after the government passed a moratorium on foreign fishing five months ago, others have been trapped on the islands for years after being dumped by fishing boats or escaping into the jungle. By Margie Mason and Robin McDowell. SENT: 1,160 words, photo.

THAILAND-PRAYUTH’S WORLD — Ear tugs. A flying banana peel. Remarks about getting smacked, or punched, or even executed. Such is life for the press corps following Thailand’s notoriously testy military ruler. By Todd Pitman and Thanyarat Doksone. UPCOMING: 1,030 words by 0600 GMT, photos.

AP EXPLAINS-JAPANESE SPEECH TO CONGRESS — Why Japan has waited so long for its leader to be invited to address US Congress. By Matthew Pennington. SENT: 555 words, photos.

CHINA-BOAO FORUM — Chinese president promotes regional vision at Boao Forum. SENT: 260 words.


FRANCE-PLANE CRASH — Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Lubitz appeared happy and healthy to acquaintances, but a picture emerges of a man who hid evidence of an illness from his employers — including a torn-up doctor’s note that would have kept him off work the day authorities say he crashed Flight 9525 into an Alpine mountainside. By Geir Moulson and David McHugh. SENT: 890 words, video, photos. With FRANCE-PLANE-CRASH-THE-LATEST, FRANCE-PLANE CRASH-MENTAL HEALTH (both sent).

YEMEN — As airstrikes in Yemen intensify on their second day, Egypt and Saudi Arabia consider an intervention on the ground aimed at giving the president a stronghold to return to the country. By Ahmed al-Haj and Hamza Hendawi. SENT: 1,300 words, photos, video. With YEMEN-ADEN, SAUDI AIRMEN RESCUED, YEMEN-HEZBOLLAH.

UNITED STATES-MIDEAST-GLANCE — A look at America’s complicated Mideast policy, painted by rivalry and cooperation with Iran. By Bradley Klapper. SENT: 875 words, photo.

SOMALIA-VIOLENCE — Officials: Siege by al-Shabab gunmen in Somali hotel continues more than 12 hours later. SENT: 130 words, photos. Developing.

ITALY-KNOX — Amanda Knox, who maintained that she and her former Italian boyfriend were innocent in her British roommate’s murder through multiple trials and nearly four years in jail, is vindicated when Italy’s highest court threw out their convictions once and for all. By Colleen Barry and Frances D’Emilio. SENT: 570 words, photos. Developing. With AMANDA KNOX-LIFE IN THE US, AMANDA KNOX-STATEMENT (both sent).

RUSSIA-SPACE — American astronaut Scott Kelly and his Russian counterpart Mikhail Kornienko blast off on a mission to spend an entire year away from the Earth. By Dmitry Lovetsky and Jim Heintz. SENT: 500 words, photos.

CLINTON-EMAILS — The chairman of a House committee investigating the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya, says Hillary Rodham Clinton wiped her email server “clean” and permanently deleted all emails from it. SENT: 605 words, photo.

VULNERABLE INTERNET — When vandals sliced a fiber-optic cable in the Arizona desert last month, they exposed a glaring vulnerability in the nation’s Internet infrastructure: no backup systems in many places. By Felicia Fonseca and David A. Lieb. SENT: 640 words, photos.

ANTARCTICA-ENTICING AND FORBIDDING-PHOTO GALLERY — The waddling hordes of penguins are a big attraction for tourists in Antarctica, yet deep in the oceans and across the frozen continent is another side of Antarctica both forbidding and mysterious. By Natacha Pisarenko. SENT: 220 words, photos.


LOS ANGELES — The last time Lynette Austin saw the Afghan children, they were weak, wounded and broken. But when the nurse was reunited with them at Shriners Hospital For Children, she found two cheerful 8-year-olds who had learned to speak English and to walk and even paint with artificial limbs. By Robert Jablon. SENT: 500 words, photos.


HOW TO REACH US: The editor in charge at the AP Asia-Pacific Desk in Bangkok is Hrvoje Hranjski. Questions and story requests are welcome.

The news desk can be reached at (66) 2632-6911 or by email at asia@ap.org. The Asia Photo Desk can be reached at (81-3) 6215-8941. Between 1600 GMT and 0000 GMT, please refer queries to the North America Desk in New York at (1) 212-621-1650.

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