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BC-AS--Asian News Digest, AS

April 8, 2015

ASIA:

JAPAN-US-DEFENSE — The first revision of the U.S.-Japan Defense Guidelines in 17 years will “transform” the bilateral alliance, U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said. By Ken Moritsugu. SENT: 400 words, photos.

INDIA-BLACK CARBON — Cooking stoves fired by kerosene and cow dung patties are a major source of pollution in the developing world. Experts are now putting a figure on the costs of that pollution, hoping to persuade governments and donors to subsidize cleaner replacements. By Katy Daigle. UPCOMING: 900 words, photos.

TAIWAN-CHINA — Taiwan’s president says that relations with political and military rival China were moving forward despite widespread public opposition that crested with a student occupation of parliament last year. By Ralph Jennings. SENT: 380 words, photos.

PHILIPPINES-INDONESIA-EXECUTIONS — Family members of a Filipino maid facing the death penalty after being convicted of drug trafficking in Indonesia have made a last-minute appeal for clemency to the country’s president. SENT, photos.

NEPAL-STRIKE — Life returned to normal in Nepal on Wednesday after an opposition alliance cut short a crippling general strike over an impasse about how to approve the Himalayan nation’s constitution. SENT, photos.

JAPAN-ECONOMY SCORECARD — Two years after launching a bazooka of ultra-lavish monetary easing, Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda has made only fitful progress toward the goal of the 2 percent inflation rate he and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said was needed to jolt the world’s No. 3 economy out of its deflationary rut. By Elaine Kurtenbach. SENT, photos.

AUSTRALIA-BANK FEES — Australia’s ANZ Banking Group Ltd. has won an appeal against a court decision that late payment fees charged on credit cards were exorbitant and unlawful. SENT.

INTERNATIONAL

KENYA-UNIVERSITY ATTACK — Seven hours elapsed before police commandoes flew to the scene of the university attack, a delay which may have contributed to the high death toll and which points to deeper problems in the force. By Tom Odula and Christopher Torchia. SENT: 1,000 words, video, photos, audio.

YEMEN — The Red Cross is moving to send its first shipment of tons of medical aid to Yemen since a Saudi-led air campaign began, amid fears of a humanitarian collapse in the country. By Ahmed Al-Haj. SENT: 900 words, photos. With UNITED NATIONS-YEMEN (sent).

IRAN-NUCLEAR-ANALYSIS — Only time will tell if President Obama was right when he said that if Iran cheats on the new nuclear deal, “the world will know it.” While Iran could try to push back or cover up, it has little incentive for deceit. An AP News Analysis. By George Jahn. SENT: 800 words, photos. With IRAN NUCLEAR TALKS-OBAMA (sent).

ISLAMIC STATE — Iraqi forensic teams in the newly recaptured city of Tikrit have started exhuming bodies from mass graves believed to contain some of the hundreds of soldiers killed by Islamic State militants last year. By Sinan Salaheddin. SENT: 660 words, photos, video.

PAKISTAN-CIA — A Pakistani judge orders criminal charges be filed against a former top CIA lawyer who oversaw its drone program and a former station chief in Islamabad over a 2009 strike that killed two people. By Zarar Khan and Ken Dilanian. SENT: 650 words, photos. UPCOMING: 900 words by 5 p.m.

VENEZUELA-REGIONAL SILENCE — From Mexico to Brazil, leaders in Latin America have largely kept silent in the face of a crackdown on dissent in Venezuela — and that’s unlikely to change at this week’s Summit of the Americas. By Joshua Goodman and Peter Orsi. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

AFGHANISTAN-DOMESTIC ABUSE — For the past year, the 17-year-old girl has lived in a shelter in Afghanistan’s capital, after escaping a lifetime of sexual abuse. Her story typifies the problem of violence against women, which activists say remains deeply entrenched in the country. By Rahim Faiez and Lynne O’Donnell. SENT: 900 words, photos.

OBAMA-CLIMATE HEALTH — Global warming isn’t just affecting the weather, it’s harming Americans’ health, President Obama says as he announces steps government and businesses will take to better understand and deal with the problem. By Josh Lederman and Nedra Pickler. SENT: 470 words, photos.

OBAMA-SUMMIT — White House officials leave open the possibility that President Obama could recommend Cuba’s removal from a list of state sponsors of terror around the time of the Summit of the Americas later this week in Panama. By Jim Kuhnhenn. SENT: 380 words.

WORLD’S OLDEST PERSON — A 115-year-old Detroit-area woman now listed as the world’s oldest living person still makes plans for a fishing trip each year and credits God for her longevity. SENT: 270 words, photos.

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

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