Latest Southeast Asia News

UN envoy challenges Malaysia's claim to near zero poverty

Aug. 23, 2019 1:25 AM EDT

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — A U.N. special rapporteur on Friday challenged Malaysia's claim to have nearly ended poverty, saying there was "significant poverty" with an estimated one in six people in the Southeast Asian country considered poor. Malaysia's official poverty rate fell from 49% in 1970 to...

Rohingya shun repatriation to Myanmar, want safety guarantee

Aug. 22, 2019 8:54 PM EDT

COX'S BAZAR, Bangladesh (AP) — None of the thousands of Rohingya Muslims living in crowded refugee camps in Bangladesh turned up for a planned repatriation to Myanmar on Thursday, demanding they first be guaranteed safety and citizenship. "Not a single Rohingya wants to go back without their demands being...

UN report condemns sexual violence by Myanmar military

Aug. 22, 2019 5:49 PM EDT

BANGKOK (AP) — Sexual violence carried out by Myanmar's security forces against the country's Muslim Rohingya minority was so widespread and severe that it demonstrates intent to commit genocide as well as warrants prosecution for war crimes and crimes against humanity, a U.N. report charged Thursday. The...

Indonesian walking 700 kilometers backward to save forests

Aug. 22, 2019 8:00 AM EDT

BEKASI, Indonesia (AP) — An Indonesian man is walking more than 700 kilometers (430 miles) backward from his village in eastern Java to the country's capital to raise awareness about deforestation. Medi Bastoni began his arduous expedition on July 18 from his home on the slope of Mount Wilis, a dormant...

No Rohingya turn up for repatriation to Myanmar

Aug. 22, 2019 7:20 AM EDT

COX'S BAZAR, Bangladesh (AP) — Bangladesh's refugee commissioner said Thursday that no Rohingya Muslims turned up to return to Myanmar from camps in the South Asian nation as they wanted their demands for citizenship and guarantees of safety met first. Abul Kalam told a news conference that no one from 295...

Papuan students hold independence rally in Indonesia capital

Aug. 22, 2019 6:22 AM EDT

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — More than 100 West Papuan students in Indonesia's capital staged a protest against racism on Thursday and called for independence for their restive region. The protesters marched down a main road leading to Indonesia's army headquarters and presidential palace chanting "Freedom...

2 whistleblowers appear in Australian court over leaks

Aug. 22, 2019 1:22 AM EDT

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Two whistleblowers appeared in a Canberra court on Thursday charged separately with leaking classified government information that alleges Australia bugged East Timor's Cabinet and potential war crimes committed by Australian troops in Afghanistan. Free speech demonstrators...

Rohingya still fear safety in Myanmar, repatriation unlikely

Aug. 22, 2019 12:45 AM EDT

COX'S BAZAR, Bangladesh (AP) — The repatriation of hundreds of Rohingya Muslims appeared unlikely to proceed as planned Thursday after those who were eligible told the U.N. refugee agency and the Bangladesh government they didn't want to return to Myanmar unless their citizenship and safety were ensured....

China's rust belt looks abroad as growth slows, tariffs bite

Aug. 21, 2019 11:21 PM EDT

YINGKOU, China (AP) — From Thailand to Kenya, trains run on tracks from steel mills in China's northeast, a rust-belt region that is trying to capitalize on a multibillion-dollar national initiative to build ports, railways and other projects abroad. Announced in 2012, the Belt and Road Initiative is...

Ties to China shape cautious reaction to Hong Kong protests

Aug. 21, 2019 9:05 PM EDT

For Canada and the European Union, they are a "situation." For President Donald Trump, a potential stumbling block in ongoing trade disputes. And for South Korea, an issue to be monitored. With the notable exception of Taiwan, cautious comments from the few governments willing to speak out on the ongoing protests...