Asia - The Irrawaddy
Alien Abduction? Stolen by Russia? Theories on Malaysia’s MH370 Keep Coming

A year after the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, key data remains unknown—fueling conspiracy theories and debate about one of aviation’s biggest mysteries.

Thailand Tests Floating Homes in Region Grappling With Floods

Architects and governments worldwide are brainstorming solutions as climate change brews storms, floods and rising sea levels that threaten communities in low-lying coastal cities.

China Asks Burma to “Lower Temperature” on Border

As the Kokang conflict continues, a senior Chinese official has asked Burma to reduce tensions on the border.

China Says 2015 Defense Budget to Rise About 10 Percent

China’s defense budget will rise about 10 percent this year, outpacing the slowing Chinese economy as the country ramps up investment in high-tech equipment.

UN-Cambodia Tribunal Charges Two More Ex-Khmer Rouge Cadres

In a surprise decision, the UN-backed war crimes tribunal in Cambodia charges two former cadres of the 1970s Khmer Rouge regime with crimes against humanity.

Deforestation Could Shift Monsoons, Leaving India High and Dry

Large-scale deforestation could cause monsoon rains to shift south, cutting rainfall in India by nearly a fifth, scientists say.

Tourism Thrives in Malaysia Despite Association With Tragedy

Two Malaysian airplane catastrophes don’t seem to have harmed the country’s tourism industry, with visitor numbers showing their strongest growth in years.

Hong Kong Arrests 38 as Anti-China Protesters Scuffle with Police

Hong Kong police arrest 38 people after demonstrators clash with police, in the latest sign of tension caused by China’s influence in the city.

Pollution Documentary Attracts Huge Interest in China

A new documentary on China’s environmental woes racks up more than 28 million online views in two days, underscoring growing concern over the impact of pollution.

Bangladesh Rallies for Free Speech after US Blogger’s Murder

Bangladeshis gather to pay tribute to an American blogger and critic of religious extremism who was hacked to death in Dhaka.

North Korea Test Fires 2 Short-Range Missiles

North Korea fires two short-range ballistic missiles into the sea, warning of “merciless strikes” against its enemies as Seoul and Washington launch annual military drills.

Activist Monk Seeks Buddhism Overhaul in Thailand Over Corruption Fears

Amid a series of Sangha scandals, a monk calls for radical overhaul of Thai Buddhism, fearing that huge donations and rapid modernization are corrupting monks.

Foreign Tourists Posing Nude at Temples Infuriate Cambodians

At least five foreign visitors have been arrested and deported this year for taking nude photos at Cambodia’s sacred site of Angkor Wat.

Singapore’s Founder Sedated, on Life Support

Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s 91-year-old founding father, is on life support in intensive care while being treated for severe pneumonia.

China Bans Ivory Imports for 1 Year to Protect Elephants

China imposes a one-year ban on ivory imports amid criticism that its citizens’ appetite for ivory fuels poaching that threatens the existence of African elephants.

Stuck in Limbo, Bangkok’s Hidden Urban Refugees Scrape By

A growing number of refugees live in cities and towns around the world, where they lead lives of tenuous legality and struggle to survive.

Thai Bill to Restrict Protests Sails Through First Reading

Thailand’s parliament votes in favor of a bill that restricts political demonstrations, something critics fear will be used to smother dissent after martial law ends.

UN: North Korean Company Renames Ships to Evade Sanctions

A shipping company that famously tried to hide fighter jets under a cargo of sugar later sought to evade UN sanctions by renaming its vessels.

Overfishing Driving Slavery on Thailand’s Seafood Boats 

A sophisticated network of brokers and agents recruits Burmese and Cambodia laborers through trickery and kidnapping to work on Thai fishing vessels in slave-like conditions.

Philippine Troops Attack Abu Sayyaf Militants, 7 Killed

Philippine troops battled about 300 Abu Sayyaf rebels in fighting Wednesday that left two soldiers and five militants dead in the country’s restive south.