India Takes First Step to Sending Astronaut to Space

The Wall Street Journal, December 18

It’s been a pretty amazing year for India’s space agency: reaching Mars orbit at first attempt and on a tight budget then clubbing together with the United States for future explorations of the Red planet. On Thursday morning the Indian Space Research Organization wrapped up 2014 with the successful […]

Japan’s Abe wins mandate in downbeat election

Los Angeles Times, By Yuriko Nagano, December 14

With the economy limping but no obvious contenders offering a more compelling fiscal strategy, Japanese voters on Sunday gave Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party a fresh mandate to forge on with his reforms, known as Abenomics.

Japan’s national broadcaster, NHK, predicted late Sunday that the […]

Japan’s third quarter recession deeper than estimated

BBC, December 7

Japan’s economy shrank more than initially estimated in the third quarter of 2014, according to revised gross domestic product (GDP) figures.

The economy contracted by 1.9% in annual terms from July to September, well above a preliminary reading of 1.6%.

It also shrank 0.5% on a quarterly basis, compared with an initial […]

‘Superbugs’ Kill India’s Babies and Pose an Overseas Threat

New York Times, By Gardiner Harris, December 3

Amravati, India — A deadly epidemic that could have global implications is quietly sweeping India, and among its many victims are tens of thousands of newborns dying because once-miraculous cures no longer work.

These infants are born with bacterial infections that are resistant to most known antibiotics, […]

Apec agrees network to share information on corruption

BBC, November 8

Countries of Asia and the Pacific region have agreed to set up a network to share information on corruption.

Apec members said in a statement that the purpose of the agreement, proposed by China, was to deny safe haven to anyone engaged in corruption.

It comes amid efforts by Chinese President Xi […]

Obama Agrees with Republicans: Will Abolish Obamacare

President Obama announced today that in the spirit of bi-partisanship he will agree to repeal Obamacare. The press release follows:

[…]

Japan nuclear plant gets approval to restart, over three years after Fukushima

Reuters, October 28

Tokyo – A town in southwest Japan became the first to approve the restart of a nuclear power station on Tuesday, a step forward in Japan’s fraught process of reviving an industry left idled by the Fukushima catastrophe in 2011.

Satsumasendai, a town of 100,000 that hosts the two-reactor Kyushu Electric Power […]

Backlash after Hong Kong police release video of Occupy protesters’ ‘violent behaviour’

Backlash over video said to show the ‘hate and violence’ of Occupy protesters as lawmakers accuse security chief of ‘political propaganda’

South China Morning Post, By Tony Cheung , Shirley Zhao and Clifford Lo, October 28

Security chief Lai Tung-kwok yesterday attempted to lift the lid on “hate and violence” by Occupy protesters with a […]

Suspect in beheading of US journalist Daniel Pearl released

BBC, October 24

One of the suspects in the murder of American journalist Daniel Pearl has been set free by an anti-terrorism court in Pakistan.

Qari Hashim was arrested in 2007 and held in jail in Hyderabad, a southern city in Pakistan, during his trial.

The court acquitted Mr Hashim because of a lack of […]

Joko Widodo sworn in as Indonesian president

BBC, October 20 Joko Widodo, the charismatic outsider who won Indonesia’s presidency, made a call for national reconciliation and unity as he was sworn in.

Popularly known as Jokowi, the 53-year-old took the oath of office at a ceremony held at parliament in Jakarta.

He was then cheered through the streets as he made his […]

Typhoon Vongfong injures dozens in Japan

BBC, October 12 Typhoon Vongfong, the strongest storm to hit Japan this year, is moving north towards the country’s main islands, leaving at least 30 injured in Okinawa.

Flights were cancelled amid pounding winds and rain, while hundreds of thousands had to evacuate their homes.

The storm is due to make landfall on Kyushu island […]

300,000 Evacuated as Cyclone Hudhud approaches Indian coast

ste.india   BBC, October 11

A mass evacuation is taking place in India’s south-eastern coast a day before Cyclone Hudhud is expected to hit land.

Around 150,000 people have already left their homes in the coastal state of Andhra Pradesh. The cyclone, classed as “very severe” by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), is expected […]

Cave Paintings in Indonesia May Be Among the Oldest Known

New York Times, By John Noble Wilford, October 8

There is nothing like a blank stone surface to inspire a widely shared urge to make art.

A team of researchers reported in the journal Nature on Wednesday that paintings of hands and animals in seven limestone caves on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi may be […]

Narendra Modi calls for International Yoga Day

TNN, By Chidanand Rajghatta, September 28

New York – Yoga got a strong leg up on the world stage when Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for observing an International Yoga Day, describing the ancient science as “India’s gift to the world.”

Modi’s unexpected reference to yoga during in his UN General Assembly speech came when […]

Fukushima nuclear meltdown worse than initially reported – TEPCO

Russia Today, August 7

The meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant’s third reactor building was even worse than initially believed, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) has announced.

In fact, the power company’s new appraisal of the Fukushima No. 3 reactor building shows that all – or nearly all – of the fuel rods […]

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