Phuket’s daily morning world news round-up – Tuesday 21st August 2012

Phuket’s daily morning world news round-up – Tuesday 21st August 2012PHUKET – Gutted Phuket pub’s operating hours checked
The Tiger Discotheque in Phuket, which was gutted in a fire that killed four people last week, has been declared off-limits, while an independent group of architects has recommended demolishing the structure’s second floor and a deck.

Bangkok Post – Illegal decorations
A fire-safety expert says the Tiger Disco in Phuket, where four people died, had adequate exits, but used highly inflammable material for decorations.

Bangkok Post – The milk of human cruelness
As officials continue to grapple with drug smuggling into the gang-controlled Nakhon Si Thammarat prison – even in milk cartons – police believe an honest prison warder was killed by a convict just days out of the jail.

Bangkok Post – 2012 GDP growth 5.5-6.0%
Gross domestic product (GDP) in the second quarter of the year expanded by 4.2 per cent, after expanding a revised 0.4 per cent in the previous quarter, National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB) secretary general Arkom Termpitayapaisit said on Monday. – Reopening the bitter wounds of 2010 strife
The government, the opposition Democrat Party and the Army are engaging in a strange interplay which could put the reconciliation process in jeopardy. – Thaksin ends visit, US on defensive
Fugitive ex-PM heads for Korea after sparring with yellow shirts and raising awkward questions for US over visa. – Drought puts 400,000 rai of Buri Ram ricefields at risk
An unseasonal drought is on the verge of destroying more than 442,000 rai of rice crops in seven districts of the northeastern province of Buri Ram. – Government has 15 days to resolve rubber price problem
Rubber planters in Thailand’s southern provinces on Monday set a 15-day deadline for the government to resolve the declining price of rubber.

Bangkok Post – Online fraudster arrested
Bangkok police have arrested a 33-year-old married man believed to have conned more than 100 women of their valuables over three years and sleeping with some of them.

ASIA – Burma abolishes media censorship
The Burmese government announces it is ending pre-publication censorship of the country’s media, the latest in a series of political reforms. –  Indonesian quake death toll rises to six
Six people have died, including a nine-year-old boy, and 43 are injured following Saturday’s earthquake in central Indonesia. – Sri Lanka stops 83 on two Aust-bound boats
Sri Lanka’s navy has stopped two trawlers that were about to leave for Australia carrying 83 would-be asylum seekers. – Park wins nomination in S Korea
Park Geun-hye, the daughter of South Korea’s former leader Park Chung-hee, is nominated as the presidential candidate of the governing party. – China property prices rise in July boosted by rate cuts
Property prices in China rose in July amid cuts in borrowing costs and after some local governments eased restrictions on purchases.

UK – Britain under pressure on Assange case
Britain has not responded to the Union of South American Nations’ expression of “solidarity” with Ecuador for granting asylum to Julian Assange. – NHS encouraged to expand abroad
High-profile NHS hospitals in England are to be encouraged by the government to set up profit-making branches abroad to help fund UK services. – Virgin to fly London-Manchester
Virgin Atlantic is to introduce a new short-haul service between London Heathrow and Manchester from next March – the airline’s first domestic route. – Obesity ‘hastens brain decline’
Being overweight is not just bad for people’s waistlines but for their mental abilities too, suggests a study of more than 6,000 Britons. – Cod and Haddock demand ‘exceeds UK sea supply’
The UK would have run out of fish for the year by now if it relied on stocks from its own waters, a report suggests.

AFRICA – Somali MPs in landmark meeting
Somalia’s first formal parliament in more than 20 years is sworn in in the capital, Mogadishu, with the new MPs preparing to elect a new president. – Strike-hit South Africa mine idle
The South African mine where police shot dead 34 striking workers reopens but produces no ore, as owners extend the deadline for strikers to return. – Last of 20 men convicted for Mandela plot
A South African trial has ended with the conviction of the last of 20 men accused of high treason for a plot to kill Nelson Mandela and drive out blacks. – Somali Olympic runner ‘drowned’
Somali Olympic athlete Samia Yusuf Omar reportedly drowned trying to reach Europe on a migrant boat from Libya.

EUROPE – Germany puts pressure on Greece PM over bailout targets
Greece must stick to its agreed bailout conditions, Germany says, at the start of a week in which Greece is expected to ask for more time to make cuts. – Deadly blast hits Turkish city
A suspected car bomb in the south-eastern Turkish city of Gaziantep leaves at least eight people dead, security sources and media say. – Wildfire sweeps across Greek island of Chios
Greek firefighters are battling a large forest fire sweeping across the eastern Aegean island of Chios.

LATIN AMERICA – Deadly riot in Venezuela prison
A riot in a prison south of Venezuela’s capital, Caracas, leaves at least 20 people dead, government officials say.

MID-EAST – US warns Syria on chemical arms
President Barack Obama says the use of chemical weapons by Syria would change his calculations on US military action in the conflict. – Gaddafi son set to go on trial in Libya
Libya says it will put Muammar Gaddafi’s son on trial, defying a demand by the International Criminal Court.

US – US seizes $150m ‘linked to Hezbollah money-laundering’
The US authorities say they have seized $150m (£95m) from a bank allegedly linked to a money-laundering scheme of the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah. – US denies Assange witch-hunt claims
The United States has denied what it calls Julian Assange’s “wild” assertion that Washington is orchestrating a “witch-hunt” for him. – Apple most valuable company ever
Apple becomes the most valuable company of all time, with a market value of $623bn (£397bn), surpassing Microsoft’s record. – Scott ‘had inoperable brain cancer’
Hollywood director Tony Scott was reportedly suffering from inoperable brain cancer when he jumped to his death from a Los Angeles bridge. – Michael J. Fox will return to TV: NBC
Michael J. Fox’s new series, based loosely on his personal life, has a 22-episode commitment from NBC and is set to premiere in autumn 2013. – Augusta gets first female members
Augusta National Golf Club will have female members for the first time in its 80-year history.

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