Southeast Asia

  • World News

    United States to return 27 stolen antiquities to Cambodia

    The United States is returning 27 stolen antiquities to Cambodia. The antiquities, which include Buddhist and Hindu statues from the Angkorian era, are valued at around USD$3.8 million. It’s unclear where the statues were found, or when they were smuggled to the US, but reports say investigators in New York spent years working to recover the antiquities. Operations from Manhattan’s…

  • World News

    Defrocked American priest on trial in East Timor for alleged child sex abuse

    The trial has started for the 84 year old defrocked American priest who allegedly sexually abused girls at an orphanage he founded in East Timor back in the early 1990s. Richard Daschbach, once revered by the Southeast Asian community for founding the Topu Honis Shelter to support impoverished children and orphans, is now facing charges of sexual abuse, child pornography and…

  • World News

    Large-scale methamphetamine production emerges in Cambodia during pandemic

    During the pandemic, Cambodia has become a major base for the large-scale production of methamphetamine as drug traffickers workaround Covid-19 restrictions, according to the United Nations. Last year, during the pandemic, 170 tonnes of methamphetamine were seized by authorities in Asia, a 19% increase from the year prior, according to a report by the UN Office of Drugs and Crime.…

  • World News

    Taiwan reports holdup on Thai-made AstraZeneca vaccine order

    Taiwan is expecting a holdup on its order of the Thai-made AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine. Malaysia and the Philippines have also reported that shipments of the vaccine from the Siam Bioscience manufacturing plant in Thailand have been delayed. Siam Bioscience, which is wholly owned by a subsidiary of the Crown Property Bureau, is planned to be the AstraZeneca distribution hub for…

  • World News

    Myanmar’s ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi to go on trial next week

    The trial of Myanmar’s detained and ousted leader is set to go on next week. The military arrested Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of the National League for Democracy and a Nobel laureate, in the February 1 coup, saying the reason behind the takeover was due to a fraudulent election. She had won the election for state counsellor in a landslide. 75…

  • World News

    ASEAN delegation to visit Myanmar to help find a solution to ongoing crisis

    To help find a solution to the ongoing situation in Myanmar following the military coup, an ASEAN delegation will visit Myanmar tomorrow to meet with the leaders of the junta’s State Administrative Council, which has taken the place of the elected civilian government led by the National League of Democracy. Since the February military takeover, an estimated more than 800…

  • World News

    Rebel troops kill 20 Burmese officers, former leader Aung San Suu Kyi appears in court

    At least 20 Myanmar security forces were killed in a clash with rebel troops on Sunday and a police station was seized by the rebel fighters, according to the anti-coup movement the People’s Defence Force. The former state counsellor, Aung San Suu Kyi, also appeared in court for the first time since the February coup when the see was detained…

  • World News

    More than 15,000 foreigners arrested since January for illegal border crossings

    Thousands of foreign nationals have been arrested this year for illegally crossing land borders into Thailand. Due to fears that those entering Thailand illegally and evading the mandatory 14-day quarantine could possibly lead to the spread of Covid-19, particularly more contagious variants of the virus, Thai authorities say they will take tough legal action on illegal migrants and labour traffickers.…

  • World News

    Southeast and South Asia struggling with rapid Covid-19 spread

    With outbreaks in many countries throughout the region, and India in a Covid-19 crisis, the World Health Organisation and other health bodies are urging action in South and Southeast Asia. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have joined the call to action to aid the Earth’s most populous region, and the pandemic now ravaging it. The…

  • World News

    Laos prime minister orders an extension on lockdown measures

    While the majority of countries across the globe have been grappling with Covid-19 outbreaks for the past year, Laos, just North of Thailand, has only reported 1,177 cases with the vast majority of the infections detected over the past month. Laos PM Phankhan Viphavanh says ordered an extension on lockdown measures, now until May 20, saying it is essential in…

  • World News

    Vietnam extends quarantine for overseas arrivals to 21 days

    Just the thought of 14 days in isolation has driven away many prospective tourists. Imagine 21 days in quarantine. If you want to travel to Vietnam, you’ll now have to go through the 3 week quarantine upon entering the country, Vietnam’s Minister of Health Nguyễn Thanh Long announced yesterday. The country of 96 million people has kept cases low at…

  • Environment News

    Mekong unseasonal water levels endanger nesting birds in Thailand

    The following story was written by Tyler Roney for Third Pole, a “multilingual platform dedicated to promoting information and discussion about the Himalayan watershed and the rivers that originate there.” Just 50 metres from the Mekong, in the shadow of a discarded plastic cup, a lone chick sits camouflaged on the sand. It is a newly hatched small pratincole in…

  • World News

    Suicide bombers attack Indonesia cathedral, at least 20 injured

    At least 20 people were injured in an explosion at a cathedral in Indonesia believed to have been cause by 2 suspected suicide bombers involved in an Islamist militant network. The blast went off at 10:30am, just after the Palm Sunday Mass had just finished at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Cathedral in Makassa, a major port city in South…

  • World News

    Australian couple detained in Myanmar as they tried to flee the country

    As violence continues after the Myanmar coup with the death toll now past 200, an Australian couple was detained as they were trying to leave the country on a relief flight, according to Agence France-Presse. They are now believed to be on house arrest. Reports say Matthew O’Kane and Christa Avery ran a consultancy business in Yangon, the country’s largest…

  • World News

    Thailand calls on Myanmar military to release detainees and to de-escalate the situation

    Thailand is urging Myanmar to release everyone who was detained by the military following last month’s coup. Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs released a statement today calling on a de-escalation of the country’s situation where many have been injured and even killed in protests. “As a neighbor, sharing a long common border, and with the Myanmar and Thai peoples having…

  • World News

    Homes and highways in Vietnam are being lost as Mekong delta washes away

    The following story was written by Michael Tatarski for China Dialogue, a non-profit focused on environmental challenges related to China. One night two years ago, Lam Thi Le and Nguyen Van Thuong heard loud cracks coming from their neighbours’ riverfront home. The neighbours left, and a day later half of their house collapsed into the broad Tien River as the…

  • World News

    Malaysia coast guard busts record methamphetamine shipment, possibly smuggled from Golden Triangle

    Malaysia’s coast guard made its largest bust, seizing more than 2 tonnes of crystal methamphetamine that was hidden in packets of Chinese tea. The shipment of illegal drugs, worth 105.9 million ringgit, or 789 million baht, is part of a large-scale drug trade across Southeast Asia, China and Australia. The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency director general, Mohamad Zubil Mat Som,…

  • Thailand News

    Top medic says Thailand can become Southeast Asia’s foremost medical hub

    One of Thailand’s most prominent doctors says the country should aim to become the leading medical hub in Southeast Asia, before any future pandemics arise. Prasit Watanapa, from Siriraj Hospital’s Faculty of Medicine, has called on the Kingdom to seize the opportunity, in a speech at “Thailand’s Mega Trends Forum 2020” in Bangkok. The event was organised by Forbes Thailand.…

  • Covid-19 News

    Thailand to be Southeast Asia production base for Oxford’s Covid-19 vaccine

    Thailand is planned to be the Southeast Asia production base for Oxford University’s Covid-19 vaccine. The British-Swedish pharmaceutical company Astra-Zeneca is working with Oxford to make the vaccine, if and when it is approved, globally available and Siam Bioscience will manufacture the vaccine in Thailand. Thailand is planned to be the production base for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations,…

  • World News

    Thai Health Minister accepts chairman role with WHO Regional Committee

    Thailand’s Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, has been appointed chair of the World Health Organisation’s Regional Committee for Southeast Asia. The colourful and controversial minister made the announcement at a press conference yesterday afternoon. He says 14 countries put his name forward for the role, which has a fixed term of 1 year, partly due to Thailand’s success in controlling the…

  • World News

    Synthetic drugs growing in east, Southeast Asia: UN report

    The synthetic drugs market in East and Southeast Asia continues to expand and diversify, and the price of methamphetamine “yaba” tablets has dropped to the lowest level in a decade as the supply has surged. A report released yesterday by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime titled “Synthetic Drugs in East and Southeast Asia: Latest Developments and Challenges”, warns…

  • World News

    Recession hits Hong Kong as no end in sight for anti-government protests

    More than five months in to the anti-government protests that have shaken Hong Kong, Paul Chan, the city’s Financial Secretary says Hong Kong is in recession and the economy is unlikely to grow this year. Thai PBS World reports that Mr Chan says the protests have had a devastating effect on the economy and that achieving the government’s forecast of…

  • World News

    Report into Lion Air crash blames variety of factors

    Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee has released its report into the Lion Air crash of October 29 last year. Thai PBS World says the report blames a combination of aircraft design flaws, inadequate training and maintenance problems for the accident that killed 189 passengers and crew. The report states that Lion Air flight 610, which had taken off from Jakarta…