June 10, 2018

Trump Kim summit: Stop romanticising a dictator, say North Korea artists

Trump Kim summit: Stop romanticising a dictator, say North Korea artists Image copyright SONG BYEOK The once-elusive Kim Jong-un may be emerging as something of an international statesman, but North Korean artists in Seoul who personally suffered under his leadership tell the BBC's Heather Chen and Minji Lee that peace talks won't change a man they call a tyrant. For several years, Song Byeok played an instrumental role in North Korea's propaganda machine. The painter from Hwanghae province was noticed by the ruling elite and chosen to be a state artist. Mr Song painted vivid, striking images showing anti-American and Japanese slogans, happy workers and of course, the Kim dynasty. "As a propaganda artist, you are expected to portray North Korea and its leaders as being the best in the world," says Mr Song, at his apartment in Seoul. "In North Korea, art can only be beautiful. The homeless do not exist and everyone is chubby as they are well-fed." This picture could n..
June 10, 2018

‘The week that changed the world’: How China prepared for Nixon

'The week that changed the world': How China prepared for Nixon Image copyright Corbis Historical/Getty Images After a false start, the meeting between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is back on track for 12 June in Singapore. It will be one of the most important encounters between former enemies, with echoes of President Nixon's 1972 visit to China. There are many similarities. China at the time was totally isolated from the outside world amidst the chaos of the Cultural Revolution, having had no formal relationship with the US for more than two decades. And just as Kim Jong-un has been telling the North Korean people that they need to co-exist peacefully with the US, the Chinese government had to convince its people that it was necessary to welcome the Americans to the heart of the third world revolution. The BBC's Yuwen Wu was a young student in 1972 and reflects on how China prepared for what Nixon described as "the week that changed the wo..
June 10, 2018

Anthony Bourdain: Vietnam noodle bar owner’s shock at chef’s death

Anthony Bourdain: Vietnam noodle bar owner's shock at chef's death Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionMichelin chef Masa Takayama talks about his late friend Anthony Bourdain The owner of a noodle restaurant in Hanoi where Anthony Bourdain enjoyed a $6 meal with Barack Obama in 2016 says she is shocked over the chef's death. "I was surprised and sad when I heard about [Bourdain]," Nguyen Thi Nga told AFP news agency in Hanoi. Her restaurant, Bun Cha Huong Lien, soared to fame after Bourdain ate there with then-President Obama in an episode of the celebrity chef's TV show. Bourdain was found dead in his hotel room on Friday in an apparent suicide. Eat out on Tuesdays and other Bourdain tips Why Bourdain's travel shows had global appeal Ms Nga, who helps run the restaurant in the Vietnamese capital, remembered Bourdain as a "nice, friendly and folksy person". "He praised our bun cha dish and its fish-sauce broth, he loved Vietnamese food..
June 9, 2018

Deadly stabbing on Japan bullet train

Deadly stabbing on Japan bullet train Image copyright Reuters Image caption Emergency services arrived at Odawara station to assist those injured in the stabbing A man has been arrested on suspicion of killing a passenger and injuring two others in a knife attack on a bullet train in Japan, police say. The fatal stabbing occurred at about 22:00 local time (13:00 GMT) on Saturday on board a Shinkansen train travelling from Tokyo to Osaka. Police detained the suspect after storming the carriage when the vehicle stopped at Odawara station. The train was carrying more than 800 passengers at the time of the incident. Officials say a male passenger taken to hospital with neck wounds later died from his injuries. The other two victims are both women, according to local media. Apology after train departs seconds early Japan country profile What happened? Image copyright Getty Images Image caption A bullet train at Odawara Station The suspect, named as Ichiro Kojima, 22, was arrested on sus..
June 9, 2018

The other Balochistan: Six stories of life in a conflict zone

The other Balochistan: Six stories of life in a conflict zone Image caption People in Balochistan's capital Quetta try to lead normal lives despite the threat of violence Pakistan's poorest province, Balochistan, is often in the news because of targeted killings, suicide attacks and abductions. The BBC's Shumaila Jaffery met people in the capital Quetta trying to lead normal lives. The secret life of a bank managerYasir is lead singer of underground rock band Malhaar. Bank manager by day but rocker by night, he must keep his passion for music hidden as he lives in a conservative Muslim society where it's taboo to sing and dance. He and his friends gather in the evening in a basement room and play rock tunes to warm up but then get going with Bollywood songs. They're mostly students who use their spare cash to buy musical instruments and equipment. "My customers at the bank wouldn't like it," says Yasir between takes. "I try not to share my music on my o..
June 9, 2018

Trump: Kim has one shot at peace at Singapore summit

Trump: Kim has one shot at peace at Singapore summit Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionDonald Trump on how he'll know if Kim Jong-un is serious about talks US President Donald Trump has said next week's summit with Kim Jong-un is a "one-time shot" at peace. A meeting between Mr Trump and the North Korean leader Mr Kim will take place on Tuesday in Singapore. Mr Trump described the summit as a "mission of peace", but said that the two leaders were in "unknown territory in the truest sense". Mr Trump has now departed the G7 meeting of world leaders in Canada for the summit. Speaking to the media before his departure, Mr Trump said the North Korean leader could do "something very positive for his people, for himself, his family". Washington hopes the talks will kick-start a process that eventually sees Mr Kim give up his nuclear weapons. The meeting that could change the world Human rights not on the table How Kim the outcast became popular The two lead..
June 9, 2018

Trooping the Colour: Guardsman first to wear turban

Trooping the Colour: Guardsman first to wear turban Image copyright PA Image caption Coldstream Guards soldier Charanpreet Singh Lall wearing a turban during a rehearsal for Trooping the Colour A Coldstream Guards soldier is set to become the first to wear a turban during the Trooping the Colour parade. About 1,000 soldiers will take part in the ceremony which marks the Queen's official birthday, on Saturday. Guardsman Charanpreet Singh Lall, 22, a Sikh from Leicester, said he hoped it was looked upon as a "new change in history". He said he expected it would encourage those from different religions and backgrounds to join the Army. Image copyright PA Image caption Gdsm Lall was born in India but moved to the UK as a baby "I hope that people watching, that they will just acknowledge it and that they will look at it as a new change in history," he said. "I hope that more people like me, not just Sikhs but from other religions and different backgrounds, that they will be encourage..
June 9, 2018

Taliban agree three-day Eid ceasefire in Afghanistan

Taliban agree three-day Eid ceasefire in Afghanistan Image caption The Taliban have extended their reach across the country The Taliban have announced a three-day ceasefire with Afghan government forces for Eid, later this month, but it will not apply to foreign forces. The group directed its fighters to stop all offensive operations during the holiday, although it said they would defend themselves if attacked. This is the first time the Taliban have agreed a ceasefire since the 2001 US-led invasion. The government announced a unilateral ceasefire earlier this week. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said the Taliban move was an opportunity for the militants to realise "their violent campaign" was "not winning them hearts and minds but further alienating the Afghan people from their cause". Government forces will not stop fighting other militants, like the Islamic State (IS) group. Taliban 'threaten 70% of Afghanistan' Who are the Taliban?
June 9, 2018

India women pay tribute to Bollywood star Sridevi through cosplay

India women pay tribute to Bollywood star Sridevi through cosplay Image copyright Nisha Susan Image caption Channelling Sridevi's famous "snake" dance from the 1986 movie Nagina Traditional saris paired with "Charlie Chaplin" moustaches, elaborate fruit headgear and sparkly outfits were out in all their glory when 500 women from the south Indian city of Bangalore attended a recent cosplay event to honour Bollywood superstar Sridevi. Sridevi's death in February came as a huge shock to her millions of fans in India and around the world. Starring in 300 films over five decades, she was one of India's most iconic actresses. Often described as the country's first female superstar, she is widely credited with paving the way for other women in the industry. And her influence on millions of female cinema goers was immense. Image copyright Darshana Dave Image caption A tribute to Anju - one of the twins Sridevi portrayed in the movie Chaalbaaz Journalist Nisha Susan, the..
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