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South Korea offers $6.3mn in aid for North via WHO SEOUL: South Korea announced Monday $6.3 million in humanitarian funding for North Korea through the World Health Organisation, the second such aid package in just over a month.The South's Unification Ministry said it had also approved aid shipments to the North by a dozen South Korean civic groups worth 2.35 billion won ($2.12 million).South Korea cut off government-to-government aid and trade with North Korea in 2010 after a series of incidents including the sinking of a South Korean naval vessel.Indirect support also plunged, but has been revived under the "trust-building" policy of President Park Geun-Hye who took office in February.A $6.0 million dollar payment to the UN children's agency working in North Korea was announced at the end of July.A few weeks ago, the United Nations appealed for $98 million to finance emergency food, health and sanitation projects being run by the five of its agencies with offices in Pyongyang.The ...

Malaysia PM to hold news conference at 6 pm KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak will hold a news conference at 6 pm (1000 GMT) on Monday, state news agency Bernama said, without giving further details.Government officials last week said Najib is scheduled to chair a fiscal policy meeting in the country's administrative capital of Putrajaya and will make a statement.Like many other emerging economies, Malaysia's financial markets have been mauled in recent weeks by concerns about the government's fiscal position and by ...
Kim Dotcom plans New Zealand political party WELLINGTON: Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom announced Monday he will launch a political party in New Zealand to contest next year's elections, drawing a scornful response from Prime Minister John Key.Dotcom said his plans were still embryonic but the yet-to-be-named party would launch on January 20, the second anniversary of an armed police raid on his Auckland mansion which resulted in him being charged with online piracy."WOW! I'm getting so many encouraging messages about my plans ...
Japan influence grips Indonesia as companies flood in JAKARTA: In front of a crowd of thousands, two sumo wrestlers charged at each other with full force, their bodies colliding with a tremendous smack that echoed through the arena in the Indonesian capital Jakarta.The first official sumo tournament to be held outside Japan in five years saw wrestler Kotoyuki take an early advantage against his opponent with a series of quick stinging slaps to the chest and a steady push forward."I love sumo I've ...
Top China official under investigation: Xinhua BEIJING: A high-ranking Chinese official who oversees state-owned firms is being probed for "serious disciplinary violations", official media reported Sunday, as the country's new leaders intensify a clampdown on corruption.The investigation of Jiang Jiemin follows several graft cases against top officials and the dramatic trial of fallen Communist Party heavyweight Bo Xilai for alleged bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power.In a brief dispatch, the state-run Xinhua news agency said Jiang "is being investigated over suspected ...
Strike over unpaid wages hits Cambodia war crimes court PHNOM PENH: Some 100 staff at Cambodia's war crimes court for former Khmer Rouge leaders went on strike over unpaid wages on Sunday in a fresh blow to the UN-backed body. The tribunal's 250 Cambodian workers, including judges and prosecutors, have not been paid since June, amid cash shortages and delays that caused United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday to appeal for international donors to step in.Tribunal spokesman Neth Pheaktra told AFP that staff ...
Major construction at North Korea rocket test site: website SEOUL: Fresh satellite imagery shows North Korea has embarked on a major new construction programme at the facility where it launched a long-range rocket in December, a US research institute said.The construction includes what could be a possible new launch pad for testing mobile ballistic missiles, the US-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University posted on its 38 North website Friday.Work has been under way at the Sohae Satellite Launching Station, commonly referred to as Tongchang-ri, ...

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