Myanmar: Aung San Suu Kyi's condition 'extremely worrying'
Today's headlines: Tehran blocks internet to obscure pro-Mahsa Amini protests; Japanese government ready for reshuffle, more women; There has been no news of the Chinese Defence Minister for a fortnight; Jakarta wants to ban business transactions on social media; Hindu leader instigator of violence against Muslims in Haryana state arrested; Russian Minister of Economic Development proposes visa facilitation for Middle Eastern countries to encourage tourism.
The son of Nobel Prize winner and Burmese politician Aung San Suu Kyi, held under arrest following the military junta's coup in February 2021, describes his mother's health conditions as “extremely worrying.” According to Kim Aris, the now 78-year-old former leader struggles to eat, suffers from vomiting and dizziness and the military has repeatedly denied her advice from a doctor outside the prison. At the same time, army air and artillery strikes have killed 450 civilians in 2023.
Tehran has imposed heavy restrictions and widespread blocks on the internet, to obscure news of protests or demonstrations marking the first anniversary of the killing of Mahsa Amini at the hands of the morality police. The blackout of the internet has caused heavy restrictions on many activities based on online sales, as told by a leather bag trader who complains of losses of up to 80%. Social media and messaging, which in the past were channels for spreading the protest, were also targeted.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida intends to replace the foreign and defense ministers in a major reshuffle, which will increase the number of women in the executive. The change comes at a time of tension in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly with North Korea and China. The 70-year-old Yoko Kamikawa, former Justice Minister, should take over at the helm of Tokyo's diplomacy.
AFGHANISTAN - UN
The UN returns to attack the Taliban in power in Afghanistan, accusing them of a "shocking level of oppression" against women and girls, whose freedoms have been profoundly disrupted since they came to power in August 2021. The study is targeted and work, with “serious repercussions” for millions, said Volker Turk, United Nations high commissioner for human rights.
For two weeks there has been no news from the Chinese Defense Minister Li Shangfu, who disappeared from the radar of the official news and without public appearances. Unconfirmed rumors speak of "misconduct" (corruption) and he could soon be replaced, as happened to other prominent senior officials coinciding with the start of President Xi Jinping's third term in power.
Jakarta wants to ban goods transactions on social media, as part of new commercial legislation. E-commerce vendors allegedly use predatory pricing on platforms and are threatening the offline markets of Southeast Asia's largest economy. In 2022, Indonesia, with 270 million inhabitants, carried out online transactions worth 52 billion dollars.
Police have arrested Mohit Yadav, known by the alias Monu Manesar, leader of a radical Hindu group that fights for the defense of cows, who is on the run after being accused of inciting Hindu violence against Muslims in the state of Haryana, in northern India. He is also a suspect in a double murder case in neighboring Rajasthan. In the riots in two districts of Haryana, which broke out after a procession, seven people died and over 70 were injured.
RUSSIA - M. EAST
Russian Minister of Economic Development Maksim Rešetnikov reports that the government has proposed a visa-free entry regime into the country for citizens of Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia (and Malaysia). The aim is to ensure that "foreign tourists fall in love with our country: in your life you must go to Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kazan and the Far East at least once".