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BC-AS--Asian News Digest, AS

November 27, 2014



HONG KONG — Hong Kong police arrest 11 more people in a second night of scuffles with demonstrators angry at having their 2-month-old pro-democracy protest camp in a volatile neighborhood shut down. Police also said they arrested seven of their own officers for assault in connection with the Oct. 15 beating of a handcuffed protester during a violent nighttime clash. By Kelvin Chan. SENT: 300 words, photos.


KABUL, Afghanistan — A suicide bomber rams a car packed with explosives into a British embassy vehicle in the Afghan capital, killing at least five people, including a British national, the Interior Ministry says. An Afghan national who was driving the vehicle was among four Afghans killed in the attack. By Lynne O’Donnell. SENT: 385 words, photos.


KATMANDU, Nepal — South Asian heads of state attending their first summit in three years reach a deal on energy sharing, but fail on two other economic agreements during a retreat where Indian and Pakistan leaders shook hands. By Binaj Gurubacharya. SENT: 290 words, photos.


SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea reveals that leader Kim Jong Un’s younger sister is a senior official in the ruling Workers’ Party, strengthening analysts’ views that she is an increasingly important part of the family dynasty that runs the country. State media referred to Kim Yo Jong as a departmental vice director within the party’s Central Committee, the equivalent of a vice Cabinet minister. SENT: 390 words.


SEOUL, South Korea — A Japanese reporter pleads not guilty to charges of defaming South Korea’s president by reporting rumors that she was absent for seven hours during a ferry disaster in April because she was with a man. The indictment of Tatsuya Kato of Japan’s Sankei Shimbun newspaper has raised questions about South Korea’s press freedoms. By Tong-hyung Kim. SENT: 440 words, photos.


BEIJING — A top official at iconic Chinese state-owned liquor maker Moutai has been snared in the country’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign. Kweichow Moutai Group deputy general manager Fang Guoxing is under investigation for serious violations of discipline, the ruling Communist Party’s Central Committee for Discipline Inspection said. By Christopher Bodeen. SENT: 310 words, photos.


BEIJING — At least 11 people are killed in the second deadly coal mine accident to hit China in two days, pointing to continuing safety issues in the industry despite a major decline in deaths among miners in recent years. There was no immediate word on the condition of eight survivors. SENT: 300 words, photos.


NEW DELHI — An investigation into the deaths of two teenage girls believed to have been raped and hanged by their attackers concludes that the two actually committed suicide, news reports say. Ranjit Sinha, the head of the Central Bureau of Investigation, India’s version of the FBI, told Hindustan Times that a local police probe into the deaths had been conducted “erroneously.” SENT: 210 words.


KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Malaysia’s leader says a colonial-era law curbing free speech will be retained and strengthened, backpedaling on a pledge two years ago to abolish the Sedition Act as part of political reforms. The law, introduced by the British in 1948, criminalizes speech or actions with an undefined “seditious tendency,” including that which promotes hatred against the government or incites racial discord. By Eileen Ng. SENT: 360 words.


SRINAGAR, India — Heavily armed suspected militants fight a fierce gunbattle with soldiers in the Indian portion of Kashmir, and three civilians are among the nine dead, authorities say. Some of the militants were still holed up in an abandoned bunker in Jammu region and were firing at the Indian soldiers. By Aijaz Hussain. SENT: 310 words.



TOKYO — Toyota Motor Corp. recalls more than 40,000 vehicles in Japan as part of a worldwide scare over defective air bags and is investigating a new type of air bag problem that could lead to further recalls. Toyota’s recall of driver-side air bags is the latest in the widening safety problems related to Takata Corp. air bags. Toyota’s recall involves three models: Vitz, Yaris and RAV4 vehicles made in 2002 and 2003. By Mari Yamaguchi. SENT: 320 words.


MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines is unlikely to meet its 2014 growth target after the economy’s expansion slowed to 5.3 percent in the third quarter. Growth was dragged down by reduced government spending, a decline in agriculture and slower expansion in services and industry. The economy grew 6.4 percent in the previous quarter. By Teresa Cerojano. SENT: 340 words.



FERGUSON, Mo. — The throngs of protesters who overran Ferguson after the grand jury decision in the Michael Brown case dwindled to just a few small groups as people began cleaning up this battered community and seeking something closer to a normal routine. The tension that led to arson and looting earlier in the week seemed all but gone, two days after the announcement that a white police officer would not face charges in the fatal shooting of the black 18-year-old. By Tom Foreman Jr. and Alan Scher Zagier. SENT: 500 words, photos, videos, interactive.

— FERGUSON-NEWS GUIDE — Ferguson: Then, now and what might lie ahead with grand jury’s decision not to indict officer. SENT: 480 words, photos.


BEIRUT — The Islamic State group is employing multiple tactics to subdue the Sunni Muslim tribes in Syria and Iraq under its rule, wooing some with gifts — everything from cars to feed for their animals — while brutally suppressing those that resist with mass killings. As a result, the extremists face little immediate threat of an uprising. By Ryan Lucas. SENT: 890 words, photos, interactive.


VIENNA — The OPEC oil cartel is in disarray as its members don’t seem to agree on whether to cut production to halt a 30 percent slide in the price of crude. Saudi Arabia, the heavyweight, has indicated it does not back a cut, to the frustration of Iran, Venezuela and Nigeria, which all need higher prices for their production to be profitable. By George Jahn. SENT: 670 words, photos.


VATICAN CITY — When a pope last visited Turkey — Benedict XVI in 2006 — Muslim-Catholic tensions were so high that the Vatican added a stop at Istanbul’s famed Blue Mosque at the last minute in hopes of showing Benedict’s respect for Islam. Pope Francis travels to Turkey this weekend amid new Muslim-Christian tensions and war next door, with Islamic State militants seizing chunks of Iraq and Syria and sending 1.6 million refugees across the border into Turkey. By Nicole Winfield and Suzan Fraser. SENT: 1,150 words, photos.


MEXICO CITY — Distrust of public police has made private security a big business in Latin America, where a majority of police forces are deemed incompetent or corrupt — or both. In the world’s most dangerous region, an army of nearly 4 million private officers make up an industry growing 9 percent a year and projected to reach $30 billion by 2016. By Katherine Corcoran. SENT: 1,700 words, photos, interactive. An abridged version of 810 words has also been sent.


SYDNEY — Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes died Thursday from a “catastrophic” injury to his head, two days after being struck by a delivery during a match. He was 25. By Sports Writer Dennis Passa. SENT: 950 words, photos, video.


WASHINGTON — No wizardry here: Scientists turn to Harry Potter to see what a healthy brain does as it reads. By Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard. SENT: 620 words, photos.


CLEVELAND — The family of a 12-year-old boy fatally wounded by a Cleveland police officer says surveillance video of the shooting shows that if the officer had not acted so quickly the youngster would still be alive. By Mark Gillispie. SENT: 540 words, photos, video.


IERAPETRA, Greece — More than 700 people, mostly refugees from Syria, begin disembarking on the Greek island of Crete after a harrowing journey on a smuggling ship that broke down in gale-force winds while trying to reach Europe. By Nicholas Paphitis. SENT: 470 words, photos.


COPENHAGEN, Denmark — Greenland’s hopes of a mining boom are shrouded in uncertainty as voters on the ice-capped Arctic island decide who will replace a local government that collapsed after its leader admitted to using taxpayers’ money for private trips. Jan M. Olsen. SENT: 570 words, photos.


TORONTO — Former Canadian Broadcasting Corp. radio host Jian Ghomesi must live with his mother while sexual assault charges against him are heard in a case that has rocked the country’s vaunted public broadcaster. By Rob Gillies. SENT: 550 words, photos.


— BILL COSBY-NATIONAL ENQUIRER — Bill Cosby, under oath, says he gave tabloid exclusive in 2005, had accuser’s story spiked. SENT: 750 words, photo.

— UKRAINE — Pro-Western Ukraine parliament opens for its first session since elections. SENT: 310 words, photos.


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