Asia Pacific Headlines

  • Flooding hits New Zealand tourist hubs of Wanaka and Queenstown

    Heavy rain has led to rivers bursting their banks, forcing the closure of shops and restaurants Streets in the South Island tourist towns of Wanaka and Queenstown were slowly going under water on Friday, after Lake Wanaka and Lake Wakatipu burst their banks earlier in the week, flooding businesses and sewerage systems. Water and large debris closed the main street of Wanaka, a popular spot with Instagrammers thanks to its famous tree that appears to have grown out of the lake. On Friday...

    the Guardian
  • McDonald's NZ launches 'not quite vegetarian' McVeggie burger

    McVeggie patty is fried with same equipment used to cook chicken but chain hopes some vegetarians will be OK with that McDonald’s has rolled out a vegetable-based burger in New Zealand but the McVeggie comes with a curious caveat: it is not quite vegetarian. While each ingredient in the burger is suitable for vegetarians, the company has said, the patty – which is crumbed and contains mixed vegetables and cheese – is fried with the same equipment used by McDonald’s to cook chicken, so “may not...

    the Guardian
  • 'Atrocity of the century': Uighur activist urges Australia to take tougher stance against China

    Rushan Abbas says countries doing business with China are enabling its mass detention of 3 million people, including her sister A leading Uighur activist, Rushan Abbas, has urged Australian MPs to take a stronger stance against the Chinese regime, while backing controversial comparisons between the state’s authoritarianism and Nazi Germany. Abbas, who met with MPs in Canberra on Thursday and held a roundtable at the US Embassy on the plight of the Uighur Muslim minority in western China’s...

    the Guardian
  • I shall taunt you a second time: North Korea threatens Trump ‘dotard’ insults

    North Korea warns of new round of barbs after US president revived his ‘Rocket Man’ nickname for Kim Jong-unDotard or Rocket Man – who said what?North Korea has threatened to redeploy its arsenal of formidable insults against Donald Trump, referring to him once more as a “dotard” if he continues to use nicknames like “Rocket Man” for Kim Jong-un. The threat, issued by the first deputy foreign minister, Choe Son-hui, has a serious undertone. The last time the two leaders were exchanging epithets,...

    the Guardian
  • North Korea threatens to resume calling Trump ‘dotard’

    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea threatened Thursday to resume insults of U.S. President Donald Trump and consider him a “dotard” if he keeps using provocative language, such as referring to

    AP NEWS
  • The Whistleblower review – mining industry thriller stuck in a hole

    This energetic, pan-Pacific adventure lurches from one exotic location to another, jettisoning logic at every turn At once wild and hopelessly clunky, this prospective pan-Pacific blockbuster about skulduggery in the mining industry proves far less notable for what it has to say about business than for the kind of business it represents. A Chinese-Australian co-production, Xue Xiaolu’s thriller aims to sell back to the west what traditionally gets exported east: pricey locations, filled with...

    the Guardian
  • China envoy warns of 'destructive forces' trying to undermine US ties

    Ambassador Cui Tiankai claimed ‘fake news’ about Hong Kong and Xinjiang was being spread to create conflict China’s envoy to the United States has said the two countries were trying to resolve their differences over trade, but warned that forces were trying to drive a wedge between the two. Cui Tiankai, speaking at a dinner hosted by the US-China Business Council on Wednesday, said US-China ties were at a critical crossroads due to trade frictions, but it was possible to return to a better path....

    the Guardian
  • New Zealand's first pornography report finds ‘problematic’ amount of coercion

    Government’s chief censor says storylines featuring male persistence would be adopted by younger viewers in their own sex lives More than a third of all pornography watched in New Zealand depicts non-consensual sexual activity, a study by the chief censor has found, in the first report of its kind into the country’s sexual viewing habits. Censor David Shanks said the findings were important because, increasingly, young people were using the internet as their first and primary tool to learn...

    the Guardian
  • Samoa measles outbreak: families fly red flags to request vaccinations

    Workers told to stay home during two-day drive to control virus that has killed 62 people Samoa’s main streets were eerily quiet on Thursday as the government stepped up efforts to curb a measles epidemic that has killed 62 people. The government told most public and private workers to stay home for two days and shut down roads to nonessential vehicles as teams began going door-to-door to administer vaccines. Continue reading

    the Guardian
  • Boris Johnson suggests Huawei role in 5G might harm UK security

    PM signals he is preparing to shut Chinese firm out after lobbying from Donald Trump Boris Johnson has cast doubt on whether the UK will allow Huawei to invest in its 5G network, suggesting it might “prejudice” the Five Eyes intelligence relationship, after Donald Trump applied pressure for other countries to adopt the US ban. In his strongest signal so far that he is preparing to shut Huawei out of the network, Johnson told a press conference at the Nato leaders’ meeting that security concerns...

    the Guardian
  • Radiation hotspots 'found near Fukushima Olympic site'

    Greenpeace calls for fresh monitoring of region where nuclear disaster occurred Greenpeace has said it detected radiation hotspots near the starting point of the upcoming Olympic torch relay in Fukushima. Japan’s environment ministry said the area was generally safe but it was in talks with local communities to survey the region before the 2020 Games, which open on 24 July. Continue reading

    the Guardian
  • Dead birds and rashes: Hong Kong residents fear teargas poisoning

    Police have fired 10,000 canisters in protests, sparking health scare over possible harmful effects Angel Chan is more cautious about where she takes her two children, aged three and five, to play these days. “Police have thrown teargas all over the city – some of my friends say their children have come out in rashes,” Chan said. “I simply don’t know where to find a safe spot any more.” Continue reading

    the Guardian
  • Anger in China as US House passes Uighur crackdown bill

    Beijing 'resolutely opposes' resolution, which among others seeks to sanction Communist Party leader in Xinjiang.

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  • Kim Jong-un rides to sacred peak on white horse – in pictures

    The North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, rode a white horse up a sacred mountain on his second symbolic visit to the site in less than two months. Photos showed Kim, his wife and top lieutenants, on horseback as they travelled to snow-covered Mount Paektu, the highest peak on the Korean peninsula Continue reading

    the Guardian
  • The eerie blue glow of Bangkok at night – in pictures

    From the shanty towns of Khlong Toei to the hidden parts of Chinatown, Cody Ellingham walked Thailand’s capital every night for five weeks to photograph the city for his book Bangkok Phosphors Continue reading

    the Guardian
  • AP Exclusive: 629 Pakistani girls sold as brides to China

    LAHORE, Pakistan (AP) — Page after page, the names stack up: 629 girls and women from across Pakistan who were sold as brides to Chinese men and taken to China. The list, obtained by The

    AP NEWS
  • Markets in tailspin amid fears US-China trade deal is in peril

    Asian markets plunge after Trump comments about trade deal delay made worse by possible Xinjiang sanctions Global financial markets have gone into a tailspin amid mounting concern that the US and China are not going to conclude an interim trade agreement before a new set of American tariffs hit Chinese goods on 15 December. Asian markets saw heavy selling on Wednesday after Donald Trump said a trade deal could wait until next year’s presidential election, scotching widely held expectations that...

    the Guardian
  • Elon Musk: pedo guy insult was 'not classy' but not meant literally

    Billionaire entrepreneur admits he ‘would say very little at all if I just said sense’ When Elon Musk took the stand on Tuesday, the question was whether he defamed a British cave explorer by calling him a “pedo guy”, but at times it seemed the real issue was more fundamental – the fragility of male egos. “This is a case about insults between two men,” said Musk’s attorney, Alex Spiro, in his opening statement to the jury in a federal courthouse in Los Angeles on the first day of the trial....

    the Guardian
  • China gene-edited baby experiment 'may have created unintended mutations'

    He Jiankui’s original research, published for the first time, could have failed, scientists say The gene editing performed on Chinese twins to immunise them against HIV may have failed and created unintended mutations, scientists have said after the original research was made public for the first time. Excerpts from the manuscript were released by the MIT Technology Review to show how Chinese biophysicist He Jiankui ignored ethical and scientific norms in creating the twins Lula and Nana, whose...

    the Guardian
  • US House approves Uighur Act calling for sanctions on China's senior officials

    Legislation in response to crackdown in Xinjiang prompts angry response from Beijing The US House of Representatives has overwhelmingly approved a bill that would require the Trump administration to toughen its response to China’s crackdown on its Muslim minority in Xinjiang, drawing swift condemnation from Beijing. The Uighur Act of 2019 is a stronger version of a bill that angered Beijing when it passed the Senate in September. It calls on the president, Donald Trump, to impose sanctions for...

    the Guardian
  • Climate change to steer all New Zealand government decisions from now on

    James Shaw says environmental factors will be ‘at the forefront of our minds’ when major decisions are madeWe are expanding our coverage of New Zealand. Please help us by supporting our independent journalismA climate change “lens” will now be applied to all major decisions made by the government, New Zealand’s climate change minister has said, as floods and bushfires wreck havoc around the country in the first week of summer. Minister James Shaw said cabinet “routinely” considers the effects of...

    the Guardian
  • US Congress condemns China for crackdown on ethnic Muslims

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress overwhelmingly approved a bill Tuesday aimed at pressuring China over a brutal mass crackdown on ethnic Muslims in the far west of the country, legislation that follows

    AP NEWS
  • North Korea says choice of 'Christmas gift' is up to US amid missile tensions

    Pyongyang, which had given US till end of year to change position, says ‘dialogue touted by US

    the Guardian
  • South Korean pop star and actor Cha In Ha found dead aged 27

    Cha becomes third young Korean star to die in space of two months South Korean pop star and actor Cha In Ha has been found dead at the age of 27 , the third young Korean star to die in the space of two months. Cha, who was a member of the K-pop group Surprise U and also had a fledgling acting career, was found at his home. His South Korean talent agency Fantagio saying it was “filled with grief at this news that is still hard to believe”. Continue reading

    the Guardian