06/24/2022, 09.59
ASIA TODAY
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Iraq, parliament replaces al Sadr deputies

Today's headlines:  UN fears cholera outbreak in Afghanistan following quake;  Court exonerates Narendra Modi from the 2002 Gujarat riots; Thailand drops final restrictions against covid; Russian filmmaker expected in Milan, Italy, arrested.

 

IRAQ

After the resignation of 73 members of parliament prolonged Iraq's political crisis, vacant seats were filled yesterday by candidates with the second highest number of votes received during the October elections. This is strengthening pro-Iranian factions opposed to the government of Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr.

MYANMAR

Depoed Myanmar democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi has been transferred to solitary confinement. She had been held under house arrest at an unknown location in the capital Naypyidaw for the past year. The 77-year-old former Nobel laureate is reportedly being cared for by three female prison staff.

AFGHANISTAN

Earthquake survivors in Afghanistan told the BBC they have no shelter and nothing to eat. The United Nations fears a cholera outbreak. One man who was not present because he works as a laborer in Karachi, Pakistan, reported losing 20 members of his family. There are no tents: some for protection have only a tarp held up by sticks.

INDIA

India's Supreme Court upheld a ruling that cleared Prime Minister Narendra Modi of complicity in the 2002 Gujarat riots. The petition was filed by Zakia Jafri, widow of former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, who was killed during the riots. More than 1,000 people, mostly Muslims, had died and a train fire killed 60 Hindu pilgrims. Modi, at the time prime minister of Gujarat, has been accused of doing little or nothing to stop the anti-Muslim riots.

THAILAND

Bangkok has lifted the last restrictions against Covid-19: wearing masks will now be voluntary, while bars and pubs can stay open late. Nightclubs in the country's major tourist destinations had been allowed to reopen earlier this month, but a midnight closure has been imposed. Southeast Asian nations are now competing to attract visitors.

JAPAN

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's coalition is expected to retain its majority in the July 10 election for the upper house of parliament despite a drop in support for the government. This is according to an Asahi newspaper poll published today. Kishida's Liberal Democratic Party and its ally Komeito are expected to win at least 68 of the 125 seats up for grabs and retain a majority.

RUSSIA

Russian border guards stopped filmmaker Aleksandr Sokurov, one of the few men of culture to have publicly spoken out against the war in Ukraine and a member of the Human Rights Council, at the border with Finland. The director was expected in Milan for an international conference, and was forced to return home to St. Petersburg.

UZBEKISTAN - AZERBAIJAN

The presidents of Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan, Mirziyoyev and Aliev, signed a Declaration on Deepening Strategic Partnership and Intensifying All-Round Cooperation at the end of Aliev's visit to Tashkent, with 18 annexes of inter-ministerial and inter-regional cooperation between the two countries, at the production level and in many other areas.

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