Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Wednesday 28th November 2012

Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Wednesday 28th November 2012

Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Wednesday 28th November 2012PHUKET – Nepal ex-crown prince arrested
A former crown prince of Nepal has been arrested in Phuket and charged with possession of marijuana.

THAILAND – Government chief whip affirms coalition parties ready for vote
Government chief whip affirms coalition parties ready for vote on no confidence motion against 4 ministers; Parliament Speaker sets vote for 9.30am. – Democrats vow to take rice case to NACC
MP shows proof of suspicious money transfers, raises doubts about Chinese company involved in deal; Pheu Thai says Democrat worry about its own deals prevented it from seeking impeachment. – Rice exporters urge government to air information on rice pledge scheme
Rice exporters urge government to air information on rice pledge scheme, government-to-government deals; fear surplus stocks will flood market, sink prices – Dubious debate remarks
Pheu Thai MP Prasit Chaisrisa ignited a fiery side issue when he hurled a sexual comment at opposition MP Rangsima Rodrassami – by coincidence on the day the Malaysian parliament banned sexist remarks in the House. – Give us answers, Abhisit tells PM
Always pointing out that Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra had rarely answered MPs’ questions in Parliament, the opposition on the third and final day of the censure debate yesterday tried to pressure the premier to answer its questions by herself. – Flood spending under fire
The government came under heavy fire over alleged irregularities in the spending of its 120-billion-baht flood rehabilitation and prevention budget during the last day of the censure debate yesterday. – MP sleuths: outrageous graft uncovered
Opposition Democrat MPs yesterday backed their allegations against the government with findings from their own investigations – something new for a censure debate, as the Opposition is often accused of relying too much on information from the mass media. – Flood of corruption
Democrats told parliament of apparent graft involving billions of baht in government rehabilitation contracts – but provided no names to the censure debate. – Protective measures
The army chief suggests a solution to teachers’ fears of being killed by southern terrorists on the way to and from class – just sleep at the schools. – Army chief says teacher killing is insurgent attempt to discredit authorities
Army chief says teacher killing is insurgent attempt to discredit authorities; instructs 4th Army Region Commander to step up security protection for educators – Thailand severely exposed to long-term catastrophe costs: study
Thailand is among 17 high-growth economies that are severely exposed to the long-term costs of catastrophic events, given their annualised US$168-billion (Bt5.15-trillion) in-surance deficit. – Police defend media arrest
A police spokesman attempted to make peace with the press on Tuesday after protests that riot police arrested two photographers during tear gas attacks near the Pitak Siam protest last Saturday. – DSI to explain 3G probe Wednesday
The Department of Special Investigation will hold a press conference on Wednesday to reveal its initial findings of an investigation into possible irregularities in the Oct 16 auction of 3G spectrum.

ASIA – Japan PM promises to end nuclear power
Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda promised to rid Japan of nuclear energy in coming decades as he set out his party’s platform before next month’s general election. – China ‘not currency manipulator’
The US decides not to declare China as a currency manipulator but says that the yuan remains “significantly undervalued”. – Worries about overweight monks
Sri Lanka’s health ministry announced plans to draw up new guidelines for donating food to the country’s venerated Buddhist monks amid concerns about their weight and health. – Concerns raised over python trade
The global trade in python skins from South East Asia is often illegal and threatens the survival of some species, says a new report. – Tibetan students protest, as four more self-immolations reported
A crowd of Tibetan students has protested in Qinghai province, activists say, as four more self-immolations were reported.

UK – Don’t curb freedom, Leveson urged
More than 80 MPs and peers are urging Lord Justice Leveson not to recommend statutory regulation of the press in his report on media standards. – Late British MP abused boys in 1960s
British police say a high-profile MP who died two years ago physically and sexually abused boys in care homes. – Alcohol minimum price plan to be unveiled
Ministers are due to unveil plans later for a minimum price for alcohol in England and Wales as part of a drive to tackle problem drinking. – ‘New’ universities set to be created in England
About a dozen “new” universities are set to be created in England in both the private and state sectors. – Cycle and walking ‘must be norm’ for short journeys
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence said people should shun their cars if a trip could be done in 15 or 20 minutes on foot or bike. – Shakespeare’s Globe to get indoor theatre
Shakespear’s, the open-air London playhouse that helped win modern audiences over to all-weather outdoor theatergoing, is embracing the great indoors.

AFRICA – Mass Cairo protest against Mursi
Tens of thousands of Egyptians take part in a rally in Cairo against President Mohammed Mursi, who last week granted himself sweeping new powers. – Nigeria gunmen open fire in pub
Gunmen reportedly dressed as soldiers indiscriminately open fire on customers in a pub in central Nigeria, killing several civilians, officials say. – Congo rebel pull-out conditional
DR Congo rebels set conditions for the withdrawal from the eastern city of Goma after earlier reports that they would pull out by Tuesday afternoon.

EUROPE – Portugal passes another austerity budget
The parliament of recession-struck Portugal has passed a budget promising another year of austerity measures. – French party splits over leader
Francois Fillon sets up his own faction of the UMP party in the French parliament, demanding a repeat of the conservative party’s leadership ballot. – France upsets US over Palestine UN vote
France is the first major European power to voice approval of a Palestinian move to upgrade its status at the United Nations. – Gas leak blamed for Germany fire
A gas leak started a fire which killed 14 people at a workshop for disabled people in south-western Germany, investigators say. – Protesting farmers spray European Parliament with milk
Angry farmers protesting at falling dairy prices in the EU have sprayed fresh milk at the European Parliament and riot police in Brussels.

LATIN AMERICA – Argentina debt default ‘likely’
The ratings agency Fitch says that Argentina, which is locked in a court battle in New York over its debt, will probably default on what it owes. – Sao Paulo officials negligent on human rights – Amnesty
Authorities in Brazil’s Sao Paulo state are failing to provide security or justice for victims of human rights violations, Amnesty International says. – Chavez back to Cuba for treatment
Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez says he will have treatment in Cuba, where he had cancer therapy, to recover from the recent election campaign. – Mexico’s Pena Nieto meets Obama
Mexican president-elect Enrique Pena Nieto tells Barack Obama that reducing violence will be his main priority after taking office on Saturday. – Amazon deforestation ‘at record low’
The destruction of Amazon rainforest has reached its lowest level since monitoring began 24 years ago, the Brazilian government says.

MID-EAST – Syrian planes bomb olive press factory
As Syrian planes bombed an olive press factory, killing farmers, rebels carried out hit-and-run attacks on checkpoints in Damascus. – Graph suggests Iran working on bomb
A diagram obtained by The Associated Press shows that Iranian scientists have run computer simulations for a nuclear weapon that would produce more than triple the explosive force of the World War II bomb that destroyed Hiroshima. – Red Sea mining to begin in 2014
Sudan and Saudi Arabia are targeting a 2014 start for deep-water mining of a Red Sea basin believed rich in gold and copper, Sudan’s mines minister said as Khartoum seeks to replace lost oil revenues.

US – US envoy admits Benghazi error
Republicans go on the attack as a US envoy tipped to replace Hillary Clinton admits releasing incorrect information after a raid on a consulate in Libya. – Tobacco firms told to admit lying
A US judge orders tobacco firms to pay for a public campaign laying out decades of “past deception” over smoking risks. – US seeks expanded Indonesia military ties
The top US diplomat for East Asia says military ties with Indonesia have not grown fast enough. – US women challenge combat rules
Four US servicewomen file a suit through the American Civil Liberties Union against a ban on women being deployed in most combat roles. – US lottery fever over $500m prize
The second-largest lottery jackpot in US history reaches $500m ahead of Wednesday’s prize draw thanks to massive ticket sales.


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