Asia - The Irrawaddy
Curses Protected Indian River, But Now It Faces Modern World 

For centuries, a curse saved the Chambal River, but now the modern world is making an impact in this isolated part of northern India

Hong Kong ‘Radicals’ up Ante in Democracy Push Against China

Nearly three months after police cleared away Hong Kong’s pro-democracy street protests, lingering anger stokes a new front of radical activism.

Drug-Resistant Malaria Found Close to Burma Border With India

Malaria with total resistance to treatment has taken hold in Burma and spread close to the border with India, threatening to render crucial medicines useless.

China to Project Power From Artificial Islands in South China Sea

Chinese reclamation in the South China Sea will enable Beijing to extend the range of its navy, air force, coastguard and fishing fleets before long.

Thailand Bans Surrogacy for Foreigners in Bid to End ‘Rent-a-Womb’ Tourism

Thailand passes a law banning foreigners from seeking surrogacy services to end a “rent-a-womb” industry that made the country a top destination for fertility tourism.

Millions at Risk From Rapid Sea Rise in Swampy Sundarbans 

Seas are rising rapidly in the Sundarbans and threaten the swampy, low-lying delta region in India and Bangladesh where some 13 million live.

Beijing’s Glare Deepens Crisis in Macau

China’s crackdown on corruption and conspicuous consumption is ever more visible in its impact on Macau, the world’s biggest gambling hub.

India’s Ailing Air Force at Risk in Tough Neighborhood

India’s air force risks a major capability gap opening with China and Pakistan without new Western warplanes or if local defense contractors can’t step up.

Jokowi Tested After Anti-Graft Chief Named in Corruption Case

Indonesian police have named the head of the anti-graft agency a corruption case suspect, the latest twist in an escalating feud between the rival organisations.

Thailand Fails to Tackle Human Trafficking and Abuse: Rights Group

Thailand’s efforts to combat human trafficking in its multi-billion fishing industry have been “wholly inadequate,” a rights group says.

‘Commie-loving Mainlanders’ Targeted at Hong Kong’s Top University

A campus election at a top Hong Kong university degenerates into a campaign against mainland Chinese candidates, exposing simmering tensions two months after pro-democracy protests.

Malaysia’s Anwar Faces Health Risk in Prison Cell: Lawyers

Lawyers for Anwar Ibrahim, jailed last week for sodomy, say that squalid prison conditions pose a health risk to the Malaysian opposition leader.

Under Xi, China’s Defense Budget Seen Defying Economic Slowdown

President Xi Jinping is expected to authorize robust defense spending for this year despite China’s slowing economy, determined to strengthen the country’s armed capabilities.

Thai Students Are ‘Last Group Standing’ in Protesting Army Coup

Sudent protesters calling themselves the “last standing” in seeking to end military rule say they will openly defy what one leader called a tyrannical regime.

Sri Lanka’s New President Makes India His 1st Visit Abroad

Sri Lanka’s new leader is underlining India’s importance as a regional ally by making it his first official foreign destination as president.

‘Nut Rage’ Prompts South Korea to Consider Law Against High-Handed Conduct

Resentment has mounted so much against high-handedness by the rich and powerful that parliamentarians are proposing legislation to punish some of the worst abuses.

China’s ‘Blood Famine’ Drives Patients to the Black Market

With hospital blood supplies tight, desperate patients turn to agents known as “blood heads,” who sell certificates that give patients access to state blood banks.

Tough Election Battles Ahead for India’s Modi After Delhi Drubbing

This week’s election losses in New Delhi were a crushing reversal for a party that swept to power in a national ballot last May.

Sri Lanka Minister Optimistic About Delaying War-Crimes Report

Sri Lankan foreign minister is optimistic that UN will delay a report on alleged war crimes as his government is establishing a new judicial mechanism.

Inmates Commit Suicide After Failed Prison Breakout in Taiwan

Six inmates have committed suicide at a prison in Taiwan after a failed breakout attempt in which they seized weapons and held guards hostage.