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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2557

Monthly archive

Bangladesh people will reject extra-constitutional rule - US State Dept. Official

A United States official yesterday said the people of Bangladesh will reject any military takeover or extra-constitutional rule and work hard to protect democracy. "I trust that the people of Bangladesh will reject that option and work hard to protect its long tradition of democracy,' Oscar DeSoto, a senior US State Department official, said during website chat with some Bangladeshi journalists. His comment came when asked if the US has any role to play in protecting democracy in Bangladesh from any extra-constitutional move in the wake of failure of political leadership to resolve their election disputes.

U.N. Urged to Host World Summit on Nukes

By Thalif Deen - Inter Press Service

An international commission on nuclear, biological and chemical weapons has urged the 191-member U.N. General Assembly to convene a world summit on disarmament, non-proliferation and terrorist use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). The proposed summit of world leaders should also discuss and decide on reforms to improve the efficiency of the U.N. disarmament machinery and make it more effective, says a report by the 14-member commission headed by Hans Blix of Sweden, a onetime head of the U.N.'s arms inspection team in Iraq.

China’s middle-class dream shattered: millions of graduates face unemployment

This summer will be a huge disappointment for millions of Chinese university and college graduates. After spending a fortune, usually of their parents’ money, on school fees, and years of hard work, most of them will not even find a job. A number of Chinese government departments acknowledged this fact last month. A report by the National Development and Reform Commission, the former central planner, warned that China faces serious challenges this year because there will be no work for 60 percent of the 4.13 million new graduates. Only 1.6 million jobs will be available for them—down 22 percent from the previous year.

Richard Boucher expressed US belief in a negotiated settlement in Sri Lanka

United States Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Richard Boucher was yesterday equally critical of both the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam as well as the Government of Sri Lanka. Richard Boucher was speaking after a meeting with the Sri Lankan President, Mahinda Rajapakse, and Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera, on a brief stop-over in the capital Colombo. Boucher said: "The LTTE must renounce terror in word and deed, stop the violence and recognize that the only solution to the conflict is a political one."

Diplomatic travel arrangement a ‘must’ for LTTE to participate in the Talks in Oslo

Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam has tentatively agreed to participate in the forthcoming talks proposed to be held in Oslo, Norway. The talks are scheduled to be held on the 8th and the 9th of June. S.P. Tamilselvan, Head of the Political Division of the LTTE while speaking to the media revealed their position after a meeting with the Head of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission Wolf Hendrickson. Monitoring Mission Head Wolf Hendrickson confirmed the LTTE’s participation in Oslo talks and added that he had visited Kilinochchi to discuss the arrangements for the talks.

EPDP hits out at the Co-chairs for the escalation of violence by the LTTE

In a statement issued by the EPDP it has denied the allegation made by the Co-chairs that they are responsible for the recent escalation of violence. Pointing a finger directly at the LTTE for the escalation of violence the EPDP has said that the International Community is following the disinformation campaign launched against it by the LTTE. EPDP also points our that the International Community must accept its share of blame for the escalation of violence by LTTE, targeting the Tamil community and destabilizing the peace process.

Fowzie despises Hakeem's entry into the government

By Quintus Perera - Asian Tribune

A H M Fowzie, Minister of Railways, Transport, Petroleum and Petroleum Resources Development said that if Muslim Congress Leader RAuf Hakeem is taken to the folds of the government, Hakeem would destroy the government and therefore he never approves Hakeem's entry into the government. He told this to a group of journalists at a press briefing held in his Ministry last week, in an answer to a query by a journalist whether the rumor that was spreading that Rauf Hakeem is to join the government was true.

Meghalaya banned screening of "Da Vinci Code"

By Raymond R Kharmujai – Asian Tribune

Meghalaya government has banned screening of the Hollywood blockbuster "Da Vinci Code" in this predominantly Christian state.
On Thursday, the multi-coalition government took this decision based on the report submitted by the seven District Magistrates of the State. In their report submitted to the General Administrative Department Minister, HDR.Lyngdoh, the District Magistrates suggested the government not to screen Ron Howard film owing public opposition to screen the film in theatres.

Stringent security measures imposed in Muttur

By Munza Mushtaq – Reporting from Colombo for Asian Tribune

Amidst threats issued to the Muslim community by an alleged LTTE auxiliary force who demanded these civilians to vacate their villages last week, Army officials assured that around the clock protection is being given to the villages in Muttur, situated in the eastern province's Trincomalee District. "Defence authorities have taken up necessary measures to apply stringent security measures to these villages in Trinco," sources attached to the Army headquarters told the “Asian Tribune.”

Has the UNSC become a Paper Tiger?

By Prof. Kanbawza Win

The Burmese military thugs have shown their true color, by not showing even the semblance of leading the country to democracy by not releasing, the Burmese democracy icon Daw Suu, not to mention stopping the ethnic cleansing of the Karen and releasing other prominent political prisoners as aging U Win Tin or Ma Suu Suu Nway. They seem to think that they can lie all the people all the time but their actions speaks louder than words. The day after US Senate unanimously adopted # 484 a resolution on Burma at UN Security Council to take action, General than Shwe stage a diplomatic coup by unraveling the long-heated demand by the world body and international rights group to meet with Suu Kyi within 24 hours. It was a perfect timing and very beneficial to the Junta.

Australia doubles number of scholarships to the Asia and Pacific region

Sunil C. Perera - Reporting from Colombo

The Australian High Commissioner Dr. Greg French says the government of Australia would double the number of scholarships to the Asia-Pacific region.
Under a new 1.4 billion Australia dollar scheme, scholarships will be provided over 19,000 in the next five years for education cooperation in the Asia and pacific region. Leaders in the region will be also be targeted for study in Australia through a new ‘Australian Leadership Awards Scheme.’

Bangladesh industrial sector flares up again

At least 30 people were injured on Wednesday in clashes between workers and officials of a readymade garment factory in the Dhaka export processing zone at Savar. In the morning several hundred workers of A-1 garments factory started a work abstention program to press home their 11-point charter of demands. More than 100 workers from Youngone, Spot-ex and Shine Fashion, a sister concern of Ring Sign Industry of South Korea, expressed solidarity with the demands and also went on work abstention. The workers also staged demonstrations.

Refugees International Calls for More Aid to Displaced People and Vulnerable Populations in Burma

Dire humanitarian conditions in Burma require an increase in aid from the United States and other donors, Refugees International concluded in a new report. Ending the Waiting Game: in Burma argues that the crisis in Burma has reached a point where displaced people and other vulnerable populations simply cannot wait any longer for outside assistance, including health services, education, food production and building the capacity of civil society organizations in the country. U.S. sanctions against Burma's military regime currently prevent the provision of significant humanitarian aid.

Worries about nuclear waste

By A Science Commentator - Syndicate Features

Even chances of the so-called civilian nuclear cooperation ‘deal’ between as India and the US becoming a reality remain uncertain it may be a good thing to start paying attention to the problem of nuclear waste management. Though India has said it will not want any change in the original ‘deal’ with the US, one alternation that it might not mind is insertion of a specific clause that requires the US to assist India in safer disposal of nuclear waste. In the event of the ‘deal’ clearing all the hurdles it is certain that the use of nuclear energy in India will increase many fold and with it will increase the problem of safely disposing the used nuclear fuel. While nuclear energy is considered to be the ‘cleanest’, countries that have built nuclear reactors have to worry about ways of disposing of the ‘waste’ as it does not become inert after use and the danger of radiation remains for thousands of years.