US-China Spy Charges; Japan Seeks North Korea Strike Response Approval; New Xi ‘Education’ Campaign; Singaporean Blogger Still Behind Bars in US

US-China Spy Charges; Japan Seeks North Korea Strike Response Approval; New Xi ‘Education’ Campaign; Singaporean Blogger Still Behind Bars in US
Photo Credit: Reuters/達志影像

What you need to know

Asia Update: A quick roundup of the most important news from around the region.

China, United States:

A State Department employee was arrested Tuesday for maintaining and concealing extensive contacts with the Chinese government. Candace Marie Claiborne, described in a federal lawsuit unsealed Wednesday as a "U.S. State Department employee who possesses a Top Secret security clearance," was charged with "obstructing an official proceeding" by making false statements to authorities and hiding "numerous" contacts with foreign intelligence agents, identified later in the text as two Chinese spies. - Newsweek

China:

Several hundred former soldiers of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) from the southeastern province of Fujian have made a trip to the graves of those who died fighting during China's short border war with Vietnam in 1979. – Radio Free Asia (United States)

China's Central Military Commission (CMC) has issued a guideline on launching an education campaign themed on upholding the core and following commands. The guideline said it is a fundamental issue to establish and uphold Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, as the core of the CPC Central Committee as well as the whole Party. - Xinhua (China)

Japan, North Korea:

A ruling Liberal Democratic Party security policy panel urged the government Wednesday to let Japan directly strike North Korean missile bases in the event Pyongyang stages a ballistic missile attack on the country. - Japan Times

Singapore, United States:

Officers at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), informed Grossman Law that Singaporean blogger Amos Yee will remain in detention despite an Immigration Judge’s asylum grant on March 24, 2017. Yee has been detained since December 17, 2016. – Media statement, Yee’s lawyers, Grossman Law

Japan, United States:

The U.S. Supreme Court has dismissed Japanese government efforts to remove from California a "comfort women" statue that symbolizes victims of Japan's sexual slavery during World War II. - The Korea Times

South Korea:

A grueling legal battle is expected to unfold at a court review on Thursday of an arrest warrant for ousted leader Park Geun-hye, who has vowed to fight all charges that led to her downfall earlier this month. - The Korea Times

Philippines:

President Rodrigo Duterte's determination to finish off drug personalities may have inspired vigilantes to take the law into their own hands, he himself said. - Rappler (Philippines)

Cambodia:

The Interior Ministry confirmed on Wednesday that it would not recognize Kem Sokha as CNRP president or three other opposition lawmakers as deputy presidents, promising “further measures” that analysts say could sideline the party in upcoming commune elections. - The Cambodia Daily

North Korea, Malaysia:

Malaysia briefly prevented a North Korean ship carrying coal from entering its port in Penang because of a suspected breach of United Nations sanctions, a port worker and Malaysian maritime officials told Reuters on Wednesday. - Reuters

Taiwan:

A Taiwanese NGO worker detained in China regularly talked about democracy and transitional justice on one of China’s most popular social media platforms, according to his employer in Taiwan. - The News Lens

Thousands of retired police and firefighters paralyzed Taipei rush-hour traffic yesterday, occupying a crucial intersection after protesting pension reform outside numerous government buildings. – Taipei Times


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