According to a UNODC report, the drug trade is “changing illicit drug markets traditionally focused on the trafficking of opiates”. The basic ingredient comes from a plant, ephedra, which grows naturally in the country, but it is much more expensive than chemical precursors legally available. Small-scale Afghan poppy growers are the main losers.

Today's headlines: Afghan Taliban against Islamabad for closing Torkham crossing; Manila wants a tariff cut on imported rice to curb price escalation. India's Silicon Valley paralyzed by vehicle strikes; Japanese premier announces government reshuffle and "drastic" economic measures; In Israel, artists and film and TV personalities revolt over industry cooperation agreement between Tel Aviv and Moscow; The "Tiger Valley" park in Tajikistan will enter among UNESCO heritage sites.

| 11/09/2023

Today's headlines: Russia tries to enlist Cubans for the war in Ukraine; China proposes a ban on clothes that 'hurt the nation's sentiment'; Japan joins moon race; Myanmar sentences a photojournalist to 20 years in prison; Bangladesh in throes of worst dengue epidemic ever recorded.

| 07/09/2023

Today's headlines: Aung San Suu Kyi has been refused outside doctor; Two giant pandas from Edinburgh Zoo will return to China by the end of the year; The president of Taiwan on official visit to eSwatini; Israel blocks the export of goods from Gaza; The border markets between Tajikistan and Afghanistan reopen; The Ukrainian Orthodox Churches adopt the Gregorian calendar instead of the Julian calendar.

| 05/09/2023

The Islamic Emirate rejects Amnesty International's accusations that surveillance equipment will erode privacy and the right of association. Over the past two years, the suicide rate among women has been twice that of men. The International Committee of the Red Cross this week plans to hand over more than 30 hospitals to the former religious “students”.

| 02/09/2023
by Vladimir Rozanskij

Rosa Otunbaeva, former president of Kyrgyzstan and current UN special representative for relations with Afghanistan, took stock of the situation in an interview. Acknowledging the Taliban even some successes, but recalling that in rural areas living standards "seem to remain in the Stone Age." "We have to learn about each other's limitations, and think about the future of Afghans and all peoples."

| 01/09/2023

Today's headlines: Terry Gou to run in upcoming Taiwanese presidential elections; Taliban bans women from entering the most famous and oldest national park for non-compliance with hijab regulations; China still addicted to cigarettes, smokers one-third of world total; At least four killed in Vietnam quarry collapse; Pyongyang approves return of expats unable to return since 2020 Covid closures; in Novosibirsk new anti-migrant raid.

| 28/08/2023
Editor's choices
by Gianni Criveller
Father Gianni Criveller, a missionary who carried out his ministry for years in Greater China, is the new editor-in-chief of AsiaNews. In greeting readers, he writes that, while taking on a “precious legacy and demanding responsibility”, ...
| 01/10/2023
A Human Rights Watch report highlights the conditions young workers face scrapping ships, one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. Scrapping yards employ children as young as 13, violating international standards, polluting the sea, and covering ...
| 28/09/2023
Jailed on 31 December 2020, Lai will go on trial under the national security law on 18 December after repeated postponements. His son Sebastian is concerned about his health. A group of 67 human rights organisations write to Biden asking him to bar Hong ...
| 26/09/2023
by Santosh Digal
According to Philippine government estimates, by 2023 the number of migrants working abroad will reach 2 million. The Church remembers their sacrifices and envisages the creation of a personal prelature for their pastoral care in the world. Along with ...
| 25/09/2023
Bishop Yang Yongqiang of Zhouchun and Yao Shun of Jining are on the list of members released today a couple of weeks before the synod opens. They were picked by the local Church in agreement with the authorities and appointed by Pope Francis. ...
| 21/09/2023
by Dario Salvi
The cardinal relects on the the tumultuous weeks since the withdrawal of the presidential decree under pressure from self-styled leaders (in the pay of Tehran). A  "more subtle" threat hangs over the community, but with the same logic as Isis: drive ...
| 19/09/2023
by Alessandra De Poli
In August, the UN Food and Agriculture Agency reported a 9.8 per cent price hike over July despite an overall drop in food prices. Rice is vulnerable to extreme climate events, like those that devastated Pakistan and China last year, but the recent increase ...
| 12/09/2023
The archbishop of Bologna continues the mission entrusted to him by Pope Francis. If, as some media reports suggest, he will meet Premier Li Qiang, this will be the first high-level meeting between a top Church official and the head of government of ...
| 12/09/2023
“L’Asia: ecco il nostro comune compito per il terzo millennio!” - Giovanni Paolo II, da “Alzatevi, andiamo”