ASIA NEWS BITES: China Censors Winnie-the-Pooh; North-South Korea Talks Proposed; Taiwan to Review Sale of Apple Daily's Owner

ASIA NEWS BITES: China Censors Winnie-the-Pooh; North-South Korea Talks Proposed; Taiwan to Review Sale of Apple Daily's Owner

What you need to know

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


The Taiwan government will review a deal planned by Hong Kong-based media group Next Digital Ltd. to sell its magazine assets in Taiwan and if the acquisition is backed by any Chinese investor, the transaction will be blocked, the Investment Commission said Monday. - Central News Agency

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) showed her faith in Taiwan as a base for correspondence of the international press freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders, also known by its French name Reporters sans Frontières (RSF), during a meeting with a visiting RSF group on Monday. - Central News Agency

A national study on child and adolescent mental disorders has found that nearly 30 percent of children in Taiwan suffer from mental disorders and need professional consultation and assistance.- The News Lens

Taiwan should continue to protect its freedom of expression while commemorating late Nobel Peace Prize-winning Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo (劉曉波) with a memorial day to support democracy and human rights, Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi said yesterday. - The Taipei Times

Taiwan's government has denied a report that it is planning to ban three types of Chinese visitors, saying Friday that it is still reviewing regulations on visits by Chinese nationals. - Central News Agency


Flooding in China’s northeast has left 18 dead and 18 missing, state media said Monday, after the latest deadly deluge to hit the country this summer. - Hong Kong Free Press

The Chinese government routinely censors discussion of weighty issues like Tibet, Taiwan, and human rights abuses. Now it is being accused of going after a far softer target: Winnie-the-Pooh. - The New York Times

China touted its buoyant economic expansion this year as evidence it can reduce debt without harming growth. But the outlook appears hazier when considering the property market’s outsize role in the economy, jittery consumers and signs that significant deleveraging hasn’t fully set in. - The Wall Street Journal

China blocks big banks from lending to Dalian Wanda. The Chinese government is putting the brakes on Dalian Wanda Group’s overseas deals, clouding the company’s ambitions to become a global entertainment powerhouse. - The Wall Street Journal

It came as little surprise when, after the death of the dissident Liu Xiaobo last week, China’s vast army of censors kicked into overdrive as they scrubbed away the outpouring of grief on social media that followed.- The New York Times


More than 80,000 children under the age of five living in majority-Muslim areas of western Myanmar are “wasting” and will need treatment for acute malnutrition over the next year, the World Food Programme has warned. - The Guardian

Hong Kong:

More than a thousand individuals and organisations have signed a petition urging the government to speed up the legislation of a gender recognition ordinance after the death of a transgender woman earlier this month. - Hong Kong Free Press

The District Court has convicted three people and acquitted two others on Monday of rioting during last February’s Mong Kok clashes, bringing the total number of rioting convictions related to the protest to eight. - Hong Kong Free Press


Member of India's lowest caste expected to be elected president. - The Guardian

Mahindra & Mahindra plans to double its bets in the U.S. over the next five years, spending $1 billion in an effort to strengthen the Indian company’s brand as President Donald Trump pressures companies foreign and domestic to steer investments toward America. - The Wall Street Journal

In certain states in southern India, it is the living lab for genetic disease. - The New York Times

As Indian, Chinese soldiers face-off in Dokalam, the situation on Ground Zero is stagnant, with soldiers standing in a human chain round-the-clock just meters apart. - NDTV

South Korea:

The administration of South Korean President Moon Jae-in made its first formal offer to start talks with North Korea, following through on a policy plank of Seoul’s first left-leaning president in nearly a decade. - The Wall Street Journal

The White House expressed veiled opposition to South Korea's proposal for rare inter-Korean talks Monday, saying current conditions are "far away" from those needed to reopen dialogue with the recalcitrant state. - The Korea Times

An American who helped arrange for 30 female peace activists to cross the heavily armed border between North and South Korea in 2015 has been denied entry to South Korea, officials confirmed on Monday. - The New York Times

South Korea child law sees more babies abandoned. - Channel NewsAsia


The number of deaths in flood-hit southwestern Japan climbed to 34 Monday, with seven more people still unaccounted for, as volunteer workers helped rebuilding efforts on the last day of a long weekend. - The Japan Times


Indonesia has become the latest Southeast Asian nation to ruffle China's feathers over the South China Sea. - CNN

Messaging service Telegram has promised to shut down terrorist-related channels after Indonesia's government partially blocked access to its platform. - BBC

Australia's ambassador to Indonesia has emphasized the Federal Government's commitment to try and help boost tourism in Indonesia. - ABC News


As the trial of former Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra over an extravagant rice subsidy programme winds to a close, her rural supporters are resisting attempts by the ruling junta to silence her family's political machine. - Channel NewsAsia

Thailand has amended a royal property law to formally give King Maha Vajiralongkorn full control of the agency which manages the multi-billion dollar holdings of the monarchy. - Channel NewsAsia


An official at the Cambodian Embassy in Kuala Lumpur said on Monday that with more Cambodians seeking support and refuge amid a labor crackdown by Malaysian authorities, the embassy’s budget was not enough to pay to bring them home. - The Cambodia Daily

A Cambodian migrant worker in South Korea on Monday claimed that possessions belonging to him and his friends were burned in an arson attack by their factory boss after they refused to work overtime. - The Cambodia Daily


President Rodrigo Duterte will be asking Congress to prolong the effectivity of martial law in Mindanao until the end of the year. - The Philippine Star

President Rodrigo Duterte offered self-rule to the Philippines' Muslim minority on Monday (Jul 17) in an attempt to defeat militants who seized a southern city in the gravest challenge to his year-old rule. - Channel NewsAsia

Mindanao might be a new battlefield accessible to regional extremists if the Abu Sayyaf Group-Maute coalition holds on to Marawi City, an American analyst said. - The Philippine Star

Free tuition, passport validity extension bills await Duterte’s signature. - The Philippine Star


The United States and Malaysia will establish working groups to address trade matters such as labor, intellectual property and the environment, US officials announced on Monday. - Channel NewsAsia