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Nepal death toll jumps to 9 as 5 more foreign trekkers found dead KATHMANDU: Five more foreign trekkers have been killed in Nepal's Himalayas, taking the death toll from a snowstorm and avalanche to nine, including eight foreigners and one local, officials said Wednesday."A chopper search has located the bodies of five people, including four Canadians and an Indian, killed in an avalanche, bringing the total number of dead to nine," police official Ganesh Rai, who is charge of rescue efforts, told AFP.Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2014 ...

Abe seeks talks with Putin; No TPP proposals with Obama TOKYO: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday he hopes to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the upcoming Asia-Europe summit."I would like to create the opportunity for talks with President Putin," Abe told reporters before leaving for the multilateral summit in Milan.A Kremlin official said last week that a bilateral meeting at ASEM was possible. Abe and Putin are already expected to have talks on the sidelines of an Asia-Pacific summit next ...
Hong Kong tension rises as police officers suspended over beating of protester HONG KONG: Hong Kong authorities said police allegedly involved in the beating of a pro-democracy protester would be removed from their positions after footage of the overnight incident went viral, sparking outrage from some lawmakers and the public.Police said they arrested 45 protesters in the early hours of Wednesday, using pepper spray on those who resisted, as they cleared a major road in the Chinese-controlled city that had been barricaded by pro-democracy demonstrators with concrete ...
Hundreds of HK police use sledgehammers and chainsaws to dismantle protest barriers HONG KONG: Hundreds of Hong Kong police used sledgehammers and chainsaws to dismantle pro-democracy barricades near government offices and the city's financial centre on Tuesday, a day after clashes broke out as anti-protest groups tried to reclaim roads.The police operation was the latest in two days to dismantle barricades after two weeks of protests, with the stalemate fuelling frustrations in the Asian financial hub and draining public support for the pro-democracy movement.Police, criticised for using ...
Japan lawmakers to visit controversial war shrine TOKYO: Dozens of Japanese politicians, possibly including cabinet ministers, are poised to visit a Tokyo shrine condemned by China and Korea as a symbol of Tokyo's militarist past, as it begins its autumn festival this week.A cross-party group of national lawmakers plans to go to Yasukuni Shrine en masse on Friday as it kicks off the four-day festival.However, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who infuriated Beijing and Seoul by visiting the shrine in December last year, ...
South Korea says it can't ban leaflet launches into North SEOUL: South Korea said Monday it would re-examine the issue of activists floating anti-Pyongyang leaflets into North Korea after an exchange of fire on the border, but stressed it could not simply ban the practice.North Korea has long condemned the launch of large bundles of leaflets attached to giant helium balloons as a provocation, and last Friday it attempted to shoot some down with large-calibre machine guns.A number of rounds fell over the border, prompting ...
New Zealand to tighten laws on foreign fighters WELLINGTON: New Zealand will tighten laws to address the potential threat posed by "foreign terrorist fighters" returning to the country from conflict hotspots such as Iraq and Syria, Prime Minister John Key said Monday.Key said current laws did not address the risk posed by radicalised fighters returning to New Zealand after exposure to the Islamic State (IS) organisation, also known as ISIS or ISIL."We know that a small number of New Zealanders have travelled overseas ...

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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-19.98 bln
Exports $25.13 bln
Imports $45.11 bln
WeeklyOctober 27, 2014
Reserves $13.464 bln