December 20, 2018

Why are Kashmiris sharing photos of traditional dress?

Why are Kashmiris sharing photos of traditional dress? Image copyright Getty Images Image caption A man wearing a traditional pheran walks through heavy snowfall in Srinagar Officials in Indian-administered Kashmir have reversed an education department ban on employees wearing traditional dress to work, following an outcry on social media. "All officials visiting the office are advised to visit in proper dress code during any official visit. It is recommended that no official will visit this office wearing pheran, traditional trousers and slipper/plastic shoes," an 11 December circular said. In response, Kashmiri social media users protested by sharing images of themselves wearing the pheran - a traditional long coat or cloak worn by both men and women. The ban was later scrapped, though a separate local government proscription on wearing the pheran remains in place in the Civil Secretariat in Srinagar city. The outcry comes as Indian-administered Kashmir remains under direct rule from..
December 20, 2018

Japan ‘to leave whaling commission to resume hunting’

Japan 'to leave whaling commission to resume hunting' Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Commercial whaling has driven some whales to the brink of extinction Japan plans to leave the International Whaling Commission (IWC) to resume commercial hunting, media reports say. The government told its MPs of the decision, NHK reports. There has been no official confirmation of the move. Commercial whaling was banned by the IWC in 1986 after some whales were driven almost to extinction. For many years Japan has hunted whales for what it calls "scientific research" and to sell the meat, a programme widely criticised by conservationists. The Japanese government is expected to cite the recovery of certain whale species as justification for the move, although it's thought to be considering whaling only in its own waters. Officials in Japan say eating whales is part of its culture. A number of coastal communities in Japan have hunted whales for centuries, but consumption in..
December 20, 2018

Carlos Ghosn: Court rejects request to extend detention

Carlos Ghosn: Court rejects request to extend detention Image copyright Getty Images In a surprise move, a court in Japan has rejected a request to extend the detention of Nissan's former chairman Carlos Ghosn, paving the way for his release. Mr Ghosn has been charged with financial misconduct - accused of under-reporting his pay package over a five-year period. He was arrested in Tokyo in November after the allegations first surfaced. His detention could have been extended on separate charges until 30 December. However, in a shock decision the Tokyo District Court said on Thursday it had heard the prosecutors' request to keep Mr Ghosn in detention, and had rejected it. The move means he may be released as early as Friday. The court also rejected an extension to the detention of Greg Kelly, an aide to Mr Ghosn. Mr Ghosn, a towering figure in the auto industry, has previously denied the accusations made against him. His defence team has said they are invalid because they d..
December 19, 2018

Sydney seaplane crash: Passenger photos give clues to final moments

Sydney seaplane crash: Passenger photos give clues to final moments Image copyright PA and Facebook Image caption Victims (clockwise from top left) Richard Cousins, Emma Bowden, Will Cousins, Gareth Morgan, Heather Bowden, Ed Cousins Australian investigators have released the final pictures taken on board a seaplane which plunged into a river last year, killing six people. Five members of a British family and a Canadian pilot died in the incident north of Sydney on 31 December. Authorities are yet to release their findings on what caused the crash. But in an interim report released on Thursday, investigators said photos and witness accounts had helped them to reconstruct the flight's final moments. The DHC-2 Beaver was on a sightseeing flight when it nose-dived into the Hawkesbury River at Jerusalem Bay, about 50km (30 miles) from the city centre. Businessman Richard Cousins, 58, died alongside his 48-year-old fiancée, magazine editor Emma Bowden, her 11-year-old daughter Heather..
December 19, 2018

‘Alone in the world’: Canada squeezed by superpowers in Huawei dispute

'Alone in the world': Canada squeezed by superpowers in Huawei dispute Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (R) and Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau The arrest of Chinese telecoms executive Meng Wanzhou at the request of Washington sent the Chinese-Canada relationship spiralling into crisis. Caught between two superpowers, what are Canada's options? When Wenran Jiang heard the news that Canada had detained Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, he knew it spelled trouble. In an op-ed in a national Canadian newspaper he "called for all sides to cool down", the senior fellow at University of British Columbia's Institute of Asian Research told the BBC. "That was literally the second day the news broke, because I knew this was not easy to navigate." He predicted the 1 December arrest of the high-profile Chinese senior executive could "snowball out of control" and do "permanent damage to a delicate Canada-China-US relationship". ..
December 19, 2018

A third Canadian citizen has been detained in China

A third Canadian citizen has been detained in China Image copyright AFP Image caption Michael Spavor (L) and Michael Kovrig have been put under "compulsory measures" Canada has confirmed a third Canadian citizen has been detained in China. Canadian officials offered no further information on the individual detained, citing privacy laws. The news comes amid a growing dispute between both countries following the arrest of a senior Chinese telecom executive in Canada earlier this month. A government official said there is no reason to believe this latest case is linked to the cases of two other Canadians recently held in China. "Global Affairs Canada is aware of a Canadian citizen detained in China," spokesman Richard Walker said in a statement to the BBC. "Consular officials are providing assistance to the family." Former diplomat Michael Kovrig and businessman Michael Spavor were both detained in China shortly after the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, at the request of t..
December 19, 2018

Subtle Asian Traits: When memes become a diaspora phenomenon

Subtle Asian Traits: When memes become a diaspora phenomenon Image copyright SUBTLE ASIAN TRAITS Image caption Parents are often the target of humour on Subtle Asian Traits For many people of Asian descent living overseas, a Facebook group called Subtle Asian Traits has become a cultural phenomenon. Its jokes and memes - especially about life as a first-generation migrant - have made the page wildly popular. Almost a million people have joined the group since it began in September. The posts, which can be made by anyone, have also sparked conversations about cultural identity. Its rapid success has stunned the group's founders - nine Chinese-Australian high school students who live in Melbourne. "We were always sharing memes and jokes about Asian culture and growing up in a foreign country and kind of just wanted a place to share them together," co-founder Kathleen Xiao, 18, tells the BBC. Anne Gu, 18, another founder, says they were thrilled when the group hit 1,000 members but..
December 19, 2018

Korean Air ‘nut rage’ flight attendant awarded $18,000

Korean Air 'nut rage' flight attendant awarded $18,000 Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The Korean Air "nut rage" incident sparked a national debate about the Korean business system Korean Air has been ordered to pay nearly $18,000 (€16,000; £14,000) to a flight attendant who was subjected to abuse in a "nut rage" incident. Park Chang-jin was forced to apologise on his knees after he served nuts to the daughter of the airline's chairman in a bag rather than a bowl in 2014. He was then ejected from the plane, which was about to take off. Mr Park, who was also demoted over the incident, had sued Korean Air for "physical and psychological suffering". He also claimed that his demotion to an ordinary cabin crew position was unfair punishment for speaking out about the incident to the media. On Wednesday, he was awarded compensation by a court in Seoul for his treatment on the day of the delayed flight in December four years ago. However, the figure was less than Mr..
December 19, 2018

Sympathy for overworked Taiwan man who ploughed into Ferraris

Sympathy for overworked Taiwan man who ploughed into Ferraris Image copyright New Taipei City Police Department Image caption The damages are not covered by Lin Chin-hsiang's car insurance policy A young Taiwanese man who dozed off in his car and crashed into three Ferraris got the shock of his life when he was told it would cost 12 million Taiwan dollars ($390,000; £310,000) to pay for the repairs. But a public outpouring of support and donations to help him pay what at first seemed an insurmountable sum has stunned the 20 year old. Lin Chin-hsiang's predicament has gripped Taiwan and the response from the public reflects growing dissatisfaction with the island's widening wealth gap, which has left many low-income families like Mr Lin's struggling to make ends meet. The young man from a single parent family dropped out of college earlier this year to help his mother at the family's shop that sells incense and gold paper money (burned during worship) in New Ta..
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