ASIA NEWS BITES: Samsung Exec Fights Back Tears in Corruption Trial; Japanese Re-Start Air Raid Drills, 70 Yrs on from WWII; Indonesia-Russia Trade Palm Oil, Coffee for Jets

ASIA NEWS BITES: Samsung Exec Fights Back Tears in Corruption Trial; Japanese Re-Start Air Raid Drills, 70 Yrs on from WWII; Indonesia-Russia Trade Palm Oil, Coffee for Jets
Photo credit: AP/ 達志影像

What you need to know

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

Taiwan:

The Taipei District Court denied Monday a habeas corpus appeal by a South Korean man who was arrested a day earlier in New Taipei for breaking into the headquarters of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and stealing cash.- Central News Agency

Taiwan's exports grew year-on-year for the tenth consecutive month in July, as global demand remained solid with the world economy on a steady road to recovery, according to data released Monday by the Ministry of Finance (MOF). - Central News Agency

After the power supply flashed a red light Monday for the first time this year, the new and advanced coal-fired generator at the Talin Power Plant in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan is expected to reinforce the supply and save the country from an electricity rationing crisis. - Central News Agency

Hong Kong:

The government closed two more government-gazetted beaches on Tuesday as a palm oil spill continues to affect bays across the territory.- Hong Kong Free Press

Hong Kong society’s response to the controversial joint checkpoint arrangement for the Express Rail Link has been calm and rational, a top Beijing official has said. - Hong Kong Free Press

China:

The United States, Australia and Japan on Monday denounced Beijing’s island-building and militarisation of the South China Sea, in contrast to the increasingly tepid response from Southeast Asian nations over the festering issue. - Hong Kong Free Press via AFP

A scheduled meeting between the foreign ministers of China and Vietnam was cancelled on the sidelines of a regional gathering, Chinese embassy officials said, amid growing tension between the two countries over the South China Sea. - Channel NewsAsia

Chinese naval forces will conduct more than 10 kinds of drills and launch dozens of types of missiles during four days of live-fire exercises off the Korean peninsula, according to state media. - The Korea Times via South China Morning Post

US President Donald Trump plans to wait at least a week and possibly longer on moving forward with a trade investigation of China on intellectual property violations after the country backed UN Security Council sanctions on North Korea, an administration official said. - South China Morning Post via Bloomberg

China’s July exports rose 7.2 per cent from a year earlier, while imports grew 11 per cent, both well below analysts’ forecasts, official data showed on Tuesday. - South China Morning Post via Reuters

The ‘Belt and Road’ projects China doesn’t want anyone talking about: Yunnan authorities obscure location of refinery at end of pipeline from Myanmar and order media to stop mentioning ‘Trans-Asia Railway’. - South China Morning Post

Alibaba said it would team up with U.S. hotel company Marriott International to expand its online-travel footprint as more Chinese venture abroad. - The Wall Street Journal

China's central bank says it is considering expanding its risk-assessment system to include major online financial businesses. - The Wall Street Journal

Seven ethnic minority Kazakhs who hold Chinese passports are in hiding in Turkey after their political asylum applications were rejected by Kazakhstan, with two others now incommunicado after being repatriated to China from Egypt, sources told RFA on Monday. - Radio Free Asia

North Korea:

The Trump administration has hailed the latest United Nations sanctions against nuclear-armed North Korea as the most severe yet, and the North’s fury over the penalties suggested they carried some sting. - The New York Times

North Korea is ready to give the United States a "severe lesson" with its strategic nuclear force if it takes military action against it, and will not put its nuclear programme or its missiles on the negotiating table, it said in a statement to a regional meeting on Monday. - Channel NewsAsia

A majority of ASEAN members are largely not for sanctions, group’s secretary-general says. - The Wall Street Journal

South Korea:

Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee fought back tears and denied wrongdoing on Monday as prosecutors sought a 12-year jail term on charges that include bribing the former president to help cement control of the South Korean tech giant. - Channel NewsAsia

Japan:

Typhoon No. 5 made landfall in the Kii Peninsula on Monday afternoon, causing heavy rain and strong winds in the region. The typhoon reached land over the northern part of Wakayama Prefecture on the peninsula at around 3:30 p.m. - The Japan News

So far this year North Korea has carried out 14 missile tests, all of them fired towards the coast of Japan. Now for the first time in more than 70 years villagers along the north-west coast of Japan are being ordered to take part in air raid drills. - BBC

A Kyoto-based medical startup said Monday it has developed what it believes to be the world’s first method for mass-producing blood platelets from induced pluripotent stem cells, better known as iPS cells, opening new possibilities for controlling bleeding after accidents or surgeries. - The Japan Times

Fire ants, a venomous, highly invasive nonnative pest, have been spotted over the past few months in various parts of Japan, prompting the Environment Ministry to both warn the public to seek immediate treatment for stings and take measures to prevent further infestation. - The Japan News

SoftBank Chief Executive Masayoshi Son expressed eagerness to invest in Uber or Lyft to gain access to the U.S. ride-hailing market after similar investments in Asia. - The Wall Street Journal

Malaysia:

Iflix, a Malaysian video-streaming service that operates mostly in emerging markets, said on Monday that it had received $133 million in a round of funding from a group led by the American media and information company Hearst Corporation. - The New York Times

Singapore:

US citizen Huang Jing, whose Singapore permanent residence status was revoked after the government identified him as being an agent of foreign influence, said on Tuesday (Aug 8) he had appealed the decision to expel him. - Channel NewsAsia

Myanmar:

Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi held a public roundtable meeting on the country’s peace process in a Mandalay region village on Monday, though residents used the opportunity to question her about the lack of electricity in the area and other issues thataffect their livelihoods. - Radio Free Asia

Cambodia:

Cambodian authorities detained and questioned a youth activist from the domestic environmental nongovernmental organization Mother Nature Cambodia on Monday for allegedly "inciting a community to protest" and for illegally flying a drone, a domestic human rights group and provincial official said. - Radio Free Asia

Cambodia will ask Japan to invest $800 million in a skytrain system for the capital Phnom Penh, Prime Minister Hun Sen said on Monday during a visit to Tokyo. - The Star

Thailand:

Thai officials voiced hope ahead of a visit by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson of escaping US pressure over the size of their trade surplus with the United States as their figures point to a jump in imports, but US data shows little change. - The Bangkok Post

More North Koreans escape to Thailand via an 'underground railroad'. - USA Today

Labour Minister Sirichai Distakul joined Asean ministers to sign the CLMVT (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam and Thailand) Joint Declaration on Safe Migration to strengthen regional efforts to end decades of illegal labour in five Southeast Asian nations. - The Bangkok Post

Indonesia:

Indonesia's annual economic growth grew more slowly than expected in the second quarter, with growth in some key sectors slowing and pivotal private consumption remaining sluggish. - The Jakarta Globe

Indonesian state trading company Perusahaan Perdagangan Indonesia and Russian state conglomerate Rostec have signed a preliminary deal to trade Sukhoi Su-35 jets for commodities like palm oil and coffee, the Indonesian trade ministry said. - The Jakarta Globe

Vietnam:

A court in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi is set to try more than a dozen officials accused of abusing their authority to manage land deals in My Duc district’s Dong Tam commune, state media reported Monday, where a property dispute sparked a rare standoff between farmers and authorities in April. - Radio Free Asia

Floods in northern Vietnam have killed 26 people and washed away hundreds of homes over the past week, causing damage estimated at more than 940 billion dong (US$41 million), the government's disaster agency said on Monday. - Channel NewsAsia


Tags: