07/21/2022, 09.23
ASIA TODAY
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Exiled ex premier Thaksin promises to return to Thailand

Today's headlines: Uruguay wants a free trade agreement with China; Japanese parliamentary delegation to visit Taiwan next week; Turkish bombing in Iraqi Kurdistan kills nine civilians; Journalist Zubair freed in India; Rais on fundamentalist schools in Uzebekistan.

THAILAND

Exiled former premier Thaksin Shinawatra has announced that he will return to Thailand. His is a response to the challenge issued to him by the current Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha, a former coup general.

CHINA-SOUTH AMERICA

Uruguay has announced that it is ready to conclude a free trade agreement with Beijing. The move drew criticism from Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay, neighbouring countries that are Montevideo's partners in the Mercosur single market. For years, the Chinese have been seeking trade agreements in the region to secure raw materials and grain.

JAPAN-TAIWAN

A delegation of seven Japanese parliamentarians will visit Taiwan next week. It will be led by Shigeru Ishiba and Yasukazu Hamada two former defence ministers. The visit will provoke inevitable criticism from Beijing, which considers the island a 'rebel' province.

IRAQ-TURKEY

Baghdad accuses the Turks of firing artillery shells in Iraqi Kurdistan, killing nine people and wounding 23 incuding a child; the victims were all tourists: they were in a park in the border town of Zakho. Ankara defended itself by saying that Kurdish PKK guerrillas were responsible for the attack.

INDIA

The Indian Supreme Court released on bail a journalist arrested last month for a tweet that police said had fomented clashes between Hindus and Muslims. Mohammed Zubair, co-founder of the fact-checking site Alt News, is a well-known critic of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

RUSSIA

The hieromonk Ioann (Kurmojarov), dismissed and reduced to a lay state by the Novosibirsk eparchy because of his intervention against the war in Ukraine at the beginning of July, for which he was arrested, will remain in a maximum security prison until his final trial. The decision was made by a court in St. Petersburg.

UZBEKISTAN

The Uzbek Directorate for Combating Terrorism arrested a person in the Andižan region who organised two clandestine schools for the religious instruction of minors. The man arrested did not have a title or a permit. Over the past two years, he had instructed about thirty Uzbek and Kyrgyz boys according to the extremist manuals 'Kurjoni-karim' and 'Muallimi Sonij'.

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