Oil spill reaches shoreline in eastern Thailand

Oil spill reaches shoreline in eastern Thailand

BANGKOK (REUTERS) – Some of the oil that leaked from an underwater pipeline in the Gulf of Thailand washed up on a beach in the country’s eastern province of Rayong late on Friday (Jan 28), a senior official said. The navy, which is working to contain the spill at sea, said it may take over a month to restore affected beach areas, following the leakage of an estimated 50,000 litres…

More vessels deployed to prevent oil slick from reaching beaches

More vessels deployed to prevent oil slick from reaching beaches

Ten additional vessels have been deployed in a major clean-up operation in the seas off Rayong following an oil leak late Tuesday, while fishing boats are laying booms to prevent the oil from reaching the beaches and the Moo Koh Samet-Khao Laem Ya national park, where it would harm coral reefs and marine species. The report from Rayong, issued at 11.40 am this morning (Friday), said slicks of crude oil…

President Halimah to visit China for opening of Winter Olympics

President Halimah to visit China for opening of Winter Olympics

BEIJING – Singapore President Halimah Yacob will be among dignitaries visiting China next week to attend the Winter Olympics opening ceremony, China’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Friday (Jan 28). This is Madam Halimah’s first overseas working visit since the pandemic started. Other dignitaries include Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand. “From Feb…

Philippines’ Marcos to Pursue Bilateral Deal With Beijing Over South China Sea

Philippines’ Marcos to Pursue Bilateral Deal With Beijing Over South China Sea

Phuket, Thailand and Asia News Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, the current frontrunner for the Philippines presidency, said this week that if elected, he will set aside the historic 2016 arbitral ruling on the South China Sea and negotiate directly with Beijing on long-running maritime and territorial disputes. The candidate laid out his position on the South China Sea in a series of media interviews this week, during which he said that…

Australia drugs regulator approves Covid-19 boosters for 16- and 17-year-olds

Australia drugs regulator approves Covid-19 boosters for 16- and 17-year-olds

SYDNEY (REUTERS) – Australia’s drug regulator on Friday (Jan 28) approved the use of Covid-19 vaccine booster shots for 16- and 17-year-olds as authorities urge people to get their third doses soon to mitigate the threat from the Omicron Coronavirus variant. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) said it had approved Pfizer’s vaccine for use as a booster in youths aged 16-17, joining the United States, Israel and Britain. Australia is…

British athletes must have freedom of expression in Beijing, Amnesty International demand

British athletes must have freedom of expression in Beijing, Amnesty International demand

British athletes’ rights to free expression must be upheld at the Beijing Olympic Games, Amnesty International has said. The UK chief executive of the human rights organisation, Sacha Deshmukh, has written to his counterpart at the British Olympic Association, Andy Anson, urging the BOA to avoid placing restrictions on athletes. Amnesty said campaign messages, such as the ‘Where is Peng Shuai?’ T-shirts and banners which were initially banned by organisers…

Well-known TV journalist will not go ‘unpunished’ for insulting me, says Erdoğan

Well-known TV journalist will not go ‘unpunished’ for insulting me, says Erdoğan

Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to ensure journalist Sedef Kabas is punished for allegedly insulting him. Ms Kabas was arrested on 22 January in Istanbul, after she used a proverb on live television that Mr Erdogan’s spokesperson described as “blatantly insulting”. “There is a very famous proverb that says that a crowned head becomes wiser. But we see it is not true…” she had said on 14 January…

Palang Pracharat party’s deputy leader Santi Promphat named new secretary-general

Palang Pracharat party’s deputy leader Santi Promphat named new secretary-general

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan, in his capacity as leader of the ruling Palang Pracharat Party (PPRP), has signed an order appointing Santi Promphat, a deputy leader, as the party’s new secretary-general, succeeding Thammanat Prompao, who was recently sacked, along with 20 other MPs, for making, what the party considered were, “unacceptable” demands. Santi, who is also the deputy finance minister, will remain in his new position until there is…

Australia’s ‘hermit kingdom’ maintains controversial plan to ‘crush’ Covid-19 despite Omicron

Australia’s ‘hermit kingdom’ maintains controversial plan to ‘crush’ Covid-19 despite Omicron

SYDNEY – In Australia, the state of Western Australia (WA) – dubbed the “hermit kingdom” in the country – is attempting an unusual experiment as it tries to remain one of the few places in the world with no Covid-19 cases. But the state government’s approach – and its decision to cancel long-awaited plans to open the state’s borders – has sparked furious debate. The premier, Mr Mark McGowan, announced…