Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Wednesday 27th February 2013

Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Wednesday 27th February 2013

Phuket’s daily world news round-up – Wednesday 27th February 2013PHUKET – Phuket gets air links to India, Malaysia
New direct flights from India and Malaysia are due to start, bringing hopes by officials for more visitors to the island province.

THAILAND – Temple to be demilitarised
Defence Ministers Sukumpol Suwanatat and Tea Banh went to the heart of the problem at the Preah Vihear temple, and quickly reached a decision to pull out troops and replace them with police as the International Court of Justice prepares to take up the thorny territorial issue. – Thai PM woos Hong Kong business sector to invest in Thailand
Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra today urged the business community in Hong Kong to invest in Thailand given the kingdom’s economic stability and a planned Bt2 trillion infrastructure development. – Malaysia ‘is crucial’
On the eve of the prime minister’s trip to Kuala Lumpur, the national security chief says Malaysia holds the key to peace in the deep South. – Ex-defence permanent secretary ‘unusually rich’
The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) has frozen about 65 million baht worth of assets held by former defence permanent secretary Gen Sathian Permthong-in and three others, after declaring the retired officer unusually wealthy. – Public advised to avoid Royal Plaza vicinity
Public advised to avoid Royal Plaza vicinity; Election Commission organising campaign to encourage voting in Sunday’s gubernatorial election; 50,000 expected to join event – Candidates promise a city free of graft
Less than a week before the March 3 Bangkok governors’ election, candidates yesterday expressed their vision on how they would rid Bangkok of corruption. – Immigration cracks down on hotels
Immigration police on Tuesday promised tougher action on operators of hotels who fail to notify them of foreign guests who come to stay at their place. – BoT Governor: unusual withdrawal rate at 2 banks unworrisome
The excessive withdrawal of deposits from two specialised state-operated banks–Bt4.8 billion in 20 days–will not affect the country’s financial institutions system, Bank of Thailand (BoT) Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul said today. – Central bank chief: Thailand’s growth likely over 4.9% this year
Thailand’s gross domestic product (GDP), reported at 6.4 per cent last year, was higher than projected, contributing to a positive outlook this year, Bank of Thailand (BoT) Governor Prasarn Trairatvorakul said yesterday.

ASIA – Cambodia reports eighth bird flu death
A 35-year-old man has become Cambodia’s eighth bird flu fatality this year, prompting concern about the spread of the virus in the country, a health official said Tuesday. – 125,000 cyanide doses spilled in Japan
Enough cyanide to kill 125,000 people has leaked from a factory in northern Japan, but most of it has been contained in snow. – China launches new stealth frigate
China’s navy takes delivery of the first of a new kind of stealth frigate, as tension continues with neighbouring countries over maritime borders. – Australian cyclone upgraded as winds lash coast
A major cyclone powering towards Australia’s resources-rich northwest coast was upgraded to a category four storm Wednesday as strong winds and heavy rains lashed the region.

UK – Britons die in Egypt balloon crash
The three British residents who died after a hot air balloon carrying tourists crashed near Luxor in Egypt, killing 19 people, have been named. – Rocket launcher and warhead seized
Police recover a rocket launcher and a warhead in west Belfast during an investigation into dissident republican terrorism. – 10 years on, Blair admits Iraq not good
The situation in Iraq is ‘not nearly’ what it should be, former British PM Tony Blair has admitted 10 years after the UK joined a US invasion of Iraq. – Ban smoking in cars, says health minister
Smoking should be banned in cars carrying children, says England’s public health minister.

AFRICA – Egypt suspends Luxor balloon flights
The Egyptian authorities suspend all hot air balloon flights near Luxor and launches an investigation following the deaths of 19 tourists in a crash. – ‘Heavy fighting’ in strategic Sudan border
Heavy fighting between government and rebel forces has broken out in Sudan, as rebels claim to have reached the trading centre of Kurmuk. – Deadly attack on Mali checkpoint
Seven people are reported killed in a car bomb blast in the northern Malian town of Kidal, thought to be aimed at a Tuareg group supporting French troops. – Poachers threatening African rhino species
Rhino poaching is threatening the population of the African animals, with one killed every 11 hours. – SA study: Donkey meat sold as beef
Donkey, water buffalo and goat meat, as well as soya, are found in 68% of processed meat tested by scientists in South Africa, without being declared.

EUROPE – Over 1,000 flights cancelled in Spain
More than 1,000 flights will be cancelled in Spain between March 4 and 8 due to a strike by staff of the biggest airline, Iberia, several carriers announced Tuesday. – Strauss-Kahn fails to ban book
A judge in France rejects a lawsuit filed by Dominique Strauss-Kahn which sought to stop the publication of a book written by a former lover. – Pope to hold final Vatican audience
Tens of thousands of pilgrims are to attend Pope Benedict XVI’s final general audience at St Peter’s Square, on the eve of his historic resignation.

LATIN AMERICA – Brazil dengue cases almost triple
Confirmed cases of dengue fever in Brazil rise by 190% so far this year with a new strain blamed for many of the infections, health authorities say. – Guatemala murder suspect is 10: police
A 10 year old boy is suspected of shooting dead a taxi driver in Guatemala City, the second killing in less than a week by so-called child assassins. – Mexico’s Pena Nieto enacts major education reform
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has enacted a major reform of the education system that includes new standards for hiring teachers. – Colombia coffee growers go on strike
Thousands of Colombian coffee growers demand greater subsidies to protect them against falling prices and a strong local currency.

MID-EAST – Battles erupt at Aleppo’s historic mosque
The area around an historic Aleppo mosque has been shaken by explosions as rebels battle the Syrian army in the country’s second city. – Gaza rocket lands near Ashkelon in southern Israel
A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip has landed in southern Israel – the first such attack since shortly after a ceasefire ended eight days of clashes in November, Israeli police say. – Saudis ‘buying arms for Syrian rebels’
Saudi-financed infantry weapons left over from the Balkan wars have been reaching Syria’s anti-regime fighters since December, the New York Times reports. – Iran satellite images raise nuclear fears
As Iran talked to world powers over its disputed nuclear drive, satellite images in a UK newspaper showed it may already be working on a “plan B”.

US – Obama warns budget cuts will hit defence
US President Barack Obama has urged Congress to take action to avoid deep spending cuts due to begin on Friday. – Hagel confirmed as defence secretary
The US Senate confirms Chuck Hagel as defence secretary, after four Republicans joined Democrats to approve a nomination mired in acrimony. – JP Morgan Chase takes job cuts up to 19,000
JP Morgan Chase has increased its planned job cuts to 19,000 by the end of next year. – Drinkers sue over ‘watered-down’ Bud
US beer lovers are suing Anheuser-Busch for allegedly watering down its Budweiser, Michelob and other popular American beer brands. – Bobby Brown sentenced to 55 days in jail
The late Whitney Houston’s ex husband Bobby Brown has been sentenced to 55 days for drink driving.


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