Asia - The Irrawaddy
China’s Vice President Pledges Support in Rare Afghanistan Visit

Chinese Vice President Li Yuanchao has signed several deals pledging infrastructure and security support for Afghanistan.

Taiwan, Chinese Presidents to Meet for First Time Since ’49

The presidents of China and Taiwan will meet this weekend for the first time since civil war divided their lands 66 years ago.

Spurred by Burma Radicals, Thai Buddhists Push for State Religion Status

A campaign to enshrine Buddhism as Thailand’s state religion has been galvanized by a radical Buddhist movement in neighboring Burma.

Exposed: Beijing’s Covert Global Radio Network

An investigation by Reuters has revealed that at least 33 radio stations in 14 countries are a part of a covert China-backed global radio network.

UN Group Says Anwar’s Jailing in Malaysia Politically Motivated

Imprisoned Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim was prosecuted for political reasons and should be released, a UN body found after reviewing the case.

Japan, South Korea Agree to Work to Resolve WWII Sex Slave Issue

The leaders of South Korea and Japan resumed formal talks Monday after a years-long freeze and agreed to address ongoing issues over Japan’s wartime abuses.

Nepali Police Kill Indian Protester at Border Blockade

Nepali police shoot and kill an Indian citizen at a border checkpoint as they try to clear protesters whose blockade has strangled Nepal’s fuel supplies.

Cartoonists a Casualty of China’s Intolerance of Dissent

The crackdown on Chinese cartoonists is part of a broader move to curb groups pushing for societal change by working outside the Communist Party.

North Korea’s ‘Girl with Seven Names’ Still Feels Hunted

Author Lee Hyeon-seo is increasingly worried about her personal security since the publication of the best-selling memoir about her escape from North Korea.

Bangladesh Police Probe Local Radicals in Latest Attacks

Police say they are investigating the possibility a local radical Islamic group was behind two attacks on publishing houses in the capital this weekend.

China to Allow All Couples Two Children to Counter Aging Population

China will ease family planning restrictions to allow all couples to have two children after decades of a strict one-child policy.

In Defeat for Beijing, Hague Court to Hear South China Sea Dispute

An arbitration court in the Netherlands has ruled that it has jurisdiction to hear some territorial claims filed against China over the South China Sea.

China Indicts Former Senior Provincial Official for Graft

China has indicted former Communist Party Zhou provincial boss Zhou Benshun on suspicion of bribery, the state prosecutor said on Thursday.

El Nino Drought Poses Poverty Challenge for Indonesia

A drought caused by the El Nino weather pattern is causing crop failures and economic hardship across large swaths of Indonesia.

Cambodia’s PM Condemns Attacks on Lawmakers, Rails at Opposition

Hun Sen has called for calm and said those who dragged the lawmakers out of their cars and kicked them on the ground following a rally would be brought to justice.

Philippines Says it Can’t Permanently House Aussie Refugees

The Philippines is unable to permanently resettle refugees from Australian-run detention camps, the country’s president Benigno Aquino III said on Tuesday.

Indonesia Leader Calls for Restraint in South China Sea

President Joko Widodo called Tuesday for all parties in the disputed South China Sea to show restraint and for discussions to start on a code of conduct.

Ex-Teacher Charged With Sedition for Thai Protest Support

A retired teacher was stopped from leaving Thailand and arrested on sedition charges for giving flowers to an anti-military protester earlier this year.

Cambodian Opposition MPs Beaten as Political Truce Falters

Two lawmakers were beaten outside Cambodia’s parliament on Monday, in the first case of violence since a political truce broke down in July.

Indian Utopian Sect under Scrutiny as Religious Tolerance Debate Rages

The arrest of a member of India’s Sanatan Sanstha sect has prompted renewed calls from some politicians to ban the Hindu group.