Asian Breaking News Circa 2017


For several years Asian Breaking News brought its readership aggregated news from around the world.
Content is from the site's 2017 archived pages providing a glimpse of what this site offered its visitors.


Syrian Army recaptures Palmyra from Islamic State

March 3, 2017


picture provided by SANA on March 26, 2016. , Reuters


Syrian Army recaptures Palmyra from Islamic State Most IS combatants withdrew from Palmyra, according to a war monitoring group Most IS combatants withdrew from Palmyra, according to a war monitoring group The General Staff of the Syrian Army on Thursday said it had recaptured the ancient city of Palmyra from the extremist group Islamic State (IS). The city, which is home to Greco-Roman ruins on the United Nations cultural body's World Heritage list, had been the scene of heavy fighting for months, Efe news agency reported. "Units from our armed forces, in cooperation with our allies, have recovered the city of Tadmur (Palmyra in Arabic) and the surrounding area," said the Syrian Army command in a statement published by the state news agency, SANA. The units led by Iranian and Russia entered the city on Thursday three months after IS took it over. According to the army, driving the extremists from the city, whose ancient ruins are a UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural … [Read more...]

Nintendo launches new Switch game console

March 3, 2017

Nintendo launches new Switch game console Company is aiming to sell more than 2 million consoles in its first month Company is aiming to sell more than 2 million consoles in its first month Nintendo's Switch console goes on sale today in a global launch seen as key for the Japanese video game giant to reverse flagging sales and compete with Sony's top-selling PlayStation 4. The USD 299 unit, which works both at home and on-the-go, blends the Super Mario maker's history in the console business with its fledgeling mobile gaming strategy, which got a big brand win after Pokemon Go's success last summer. Kyoto-based Nintendo is aiming to sell more than two million Switch consoles in its first month. Strong demand for the new unit would help Nintendo close the book on poor sales of its last console, Wii U -- the disappointing follow-up to the smash hit Wii, which sold over 100 million units worldwide after its launch a decade ago. Switch has a removable screen that lets players dock it … [Read more...]

Pak tribal teen vying for prestigious award Pakistan

March 3, 2017

LONDON: A young Pakistani girl campaigning against early and forced marriages in tribal regions is amongst the finalists of 2017 Commonwealth Youth Awards for her courageous work. Hadiqa Bashir, 15, is amongst the 17 young change makers from 13 countries running to be named Commonwealth Young Person of the Year at an awards ceremony which will be held here in two weeks. The Commonwealth Youth Awards for Excellence in Development Work celebrate outstanding adolescents and young adults aged 15–29 from Asia, the Pacific, the Caribbean and Americas, Africa and Europe, who are leading initiatives ranging from poverty alleviation to peace-building. The Commonwealth Secretariat told The News that Hadiqa Bashir has been inspirational in her work and approach. Hadiqa campaigns against early and forced marriages in tribal regions of Pakistan, including Swara, a cultural practice in which young girls are married to elder persons. She has attended and led many rallies against forces … [Read more...]

Al Habtoor City Hotel Collection set for Taste of Dubai festival

March 3, 2017


The chefs of the signature restaurants at The St. Regis Dubai, W Dubai – Al Habtoor City and The Westin Dubai, Al Habtoor City - part of the Al Habtoor City Hotel Collection hotels - are preparing for the 10th edition of the Taste of Dubai 2017 festival, which will take place from March 9 to 11. J&G Steakhouse, The St. Regis Dubai offers a collection of American classics with a modern touch in a warm and inviting dining environment. The handpicked menu items will offer a choice of Wagyu slider with aged cave cheddar and iceberg and tomato chutney, Black truffle and comte cheese fritter, or Braised beef cheek, purple potato and carrot and cumin puree. Namu, W Dubai – Al Habtoor City features an authentic taste of Japanese and Korean rivalry. Spectate the best views of the Arabian gulf on the 31st floor and the thrilling live stations in the restaurant. Try the Jab Chea – sweet potato noodles with gan-jang and black fungus, Namu steamed bun with grilled wagyu short …

Taste of Dubai is Dubai’s ultimate gathering of the culinary world and the most popular al fresco food event. Dubai offers plenty of festivals throughout the year for those who come from afar to experience and enjoy its multiculturalism and traditions. Taste of Dubai is one of Dubai’s biggest food festivals and the city’s most appetizing affair where food lovers and food aficionados come to explore and enjoy both local and international food culture. The three-day festival that runs through March 9 – 11, 2017, celebrates diverse tastes, the international food scene, drinks and plenty of good music.

Whether you are a dedicated diner or an adventurous food lover, Taste of Dubai 2017 offers plenty to choose from. You can learn something new each day of the three-day festival from world-class chefs in the region and be inspired by their innovative cooking demonstrations and bespoke dishes, or if you are sure-handed you can take part in a live cookery class. You can also take your taste buds on a journey of high spirits by participating in beverage tasting, or spend the afternoon rubbing your shoulders with Dubai’s VIP socialites in the luxurious VIP lounge. In addition, there will be plenty of musical performances and live entertainment at the venue, including South Africa’s favourite band, 4The Music; homegrown musical talents, The Maplejacks; a band of Scottish Canadian musicians, The Boxtones; Caribbean singer and R&B artist Billy Ocean and many others.

An aside: Everyone in my family would consider themselves an adventurous food lover. Therefore it was not surprising when my mother delclared at the end of 2016 that she would take me and my younger sister to Dubai for the Taste of Dubai food festival.

We were thrilled but also jumped into high gear planning what clothes and wigs we would take with us. We belive that there should never be a bad hair day in our lives. Imagine my sister, mother, and myself crowded around a computer over the December holidays looking at Raquel Welch wigs and color rings. Computer monitors are notorious for deceiving viewers as to color. So before we order a wig, we always request a color ring of the brand that makes the style(s) we are interested in. I adore Requel Welch wigs and have bought many, but I couldn't fine the color ring I had ordered the last time I had bought one of that brand's wigs. So a request for not only a Raquel Welch wig color ring, but also a color ring for Ellen Wille (my sister's favorite brand) and Gabor (my mother's favorite brand) was sent to what I consider one of the better online wig stores, ElegantWigs. I love their customer service folks who are so patient and knowledgable. Needless to say, we had a fabulous time in Dubai, thanks Mom. And we received so many compliments from other women attendees on our chic, stylish hairdos- all of which were really wigs. We are already planning for next year. See you there.

Jazeera announces key sponsorship of heritage village

March 3, 2017


Kuwait-based Jazeera Airways announced today its key sponsorship of the Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Heritage Village. Held under the patronage of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, the village is part of the ongoing sixth edition of the Gulf Popular Heritage Festival which takes place from January 15 to March 15 and reflects Kuwait’s cultural heritage and the shared amity and traditions with the GCC neighbors. As a proud Kuwaiti airline, Jazeera Airways continues to support activities that honour Kuwait’s culture and history and firmly believes in Kuwait’s and neighboring countries’ ability to unite over the bond of shared values and history. The Heritage Village provides fantastic educational opportunities and a wide range of fun activities for children and adults alike visiting from Kuwait and from across the region. Highlighting Jazeera Airways’ role in the sponsorship, Dr. Mohamed Barakat, vice president, Marketing and Product, … [Read more...]

Low oil prices to shape GCC insurance market

March 3, 2017

Most of the insurers in the Gulf countries are likely to face moderate-to-high credit risk over the next 12-18 months, reflecting subdued economic growth on the back of weak oil prices and relatively high exposure to volatile investment assets, said a report. These factors are partly offset by the low insurance penetration across the region, which will help drive continued growth, and improving insurance regulation, stated leading ratings agency Moody's. The latter is a positive credit catalyst, but standards remain uneven across the region. According to Moody's, low oil prices are a headwind for the GCC insurance market in the short to medium term, as they hold back economic growth and weigh on government spending. Growth in GCC insurance premiums slowed to 14 in 2015 year on year (y-o-y) from 17 per cent in 2013, still far exceeding growth rates in advanced economies. The risk is greatest for insurers in Oman, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, reflecting those countries' oil dependence and … [Read more...]

Nissan launches all-new Kicks across Middle East

March 3, 2017

Nissan has launched the all-new Nissan Kicks compact crossover in the Middle East, its latest addition to the crossover segment. The all-new Nissan Kicks was first rolled out in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil during the 2016 Summer Olympics held there, and is poised to add a whole new dimension to the compact end of the crossover field in more than 80 countries, it said. Samir Cherfan, managing director of Nissan Middle, said: “The all-new Nissan Kicks was developed with the modern urban commuter in mind, with the aim of delivering the most innovative, stylish and functional crossover in its class. These commuters will appreciate the car’s ability to deal with the rough and tumble of the urban jungle courtesy of its advanced chassis control technology. They will also love the ease of parking thanks to the Around View Monitor and the amazing functionality of the 7-inch colour touchscreen. From the cosseting interior to the bold styling to the advanced technology, everywhere you look … [Read more...]

Jared Kushner joined Flynn meeting with Russian ambassador – American Politics

March 3, 2017

The White House acknowledged on Thursday that former Trump national security advisor pick Michael Flynn met with the Russian ambassador in December, and that Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, also took part in the meeting, The New York Times reported. The meeting, which lasted 20 minutes, took place at Trump Tower between Kushner, Flynn and Russian Ambassador Sergey I. Kislyak, and was meant to "establish a line of communication," explained Hope Hicks, a White House spokeswoman. The Times noted that it is "common and not improper" for officials in transition to meet with foreign dignitaries, but meetings between the Trump team and Russians are significant considering the FBI's current investigation into alleged Russian interference in November's US election. The Times also noted that this meeting came at just the time when the Obama administration was preparing to sanction Russia for said interference. Ms. Hicks added, "Jared has had meetings with many other foreign countries and … [Read more...]

Patel, Neesham return to NZ squad for South Africa series

March 3, 2017

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Off-spinner Jeetan Patel and allrounder Jimmy Neesham have been recalled to the New Zealand cricket team for the three-test series against South Africa, but no place has been found for explosive limited-overs batsman Martin Guptill. The 36-year-old Patel and batting allrounder Neesham missed New Zealand's recent test series against Pakistan and Bangladesh and last played in the five-day format against India late last year. The pair will replace opener Dean Brownlie and fast bowler Matt Henry in New Zealand's 13-man squad for the series which begins in Dunedin next Wednesday. Selector Gavin Larsen said Patel would bring variety to the New Zealand attack which faces a challenging time against a South Africa batting lineup which includes left-handers Quinton de Kock, J.P. Duminy and Dean Elgar. "Jeetan brings the ability to spin the ball away from the left-handers, which complements our other spinner in Mitchell Santner nicely," Larsen said. "He brings … [Read more...]

AP Weekly Sports Calendar Taiwan News

March 3, 2017

EDITORS: These are among the top sports events of the week. Coverage of most of these events will move on this circuit: thru 5, Mexico City — golf, WGC, Mexico Championship. thru 5, Belgrade, Serbia — athletics, European indoor championships. thru 5, Acapulco, Mexico — tennis, ATP-WTA, Mexican Open. thru 5, Sao Paulo —tennis, ATP, Brazil Open. thru 5, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia — tennis, WTA, Malaysian Open. North Sound, Antigua — cricket, West Indies vs. England, 1st ODI. thru 5, Waterkloof, South Africa — golf, European Tour, Tshwane Open. thru 5, Singapore — golf, US LPGA Tour, HSBC Women's Champions. thru 5, Lahti, Finland — skiing, Nordic world championships. thru 5, Las Vegas — rugby, world series, Las Vegas Sevens. thru 4, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates — triathlon, world series. thru 8, Bangalore, India — cricket, India vs. Australia, 2nd test. Auckland, New Zealand — cricket, New Zealand vs. South … [Read more...]


Baba Ramdev advertises his presence on TV 20 hours a day

February 1, 2017

MUMBAI: Baba Ramdev's Patanjali is fighting the foreign FMCGs by adopting a very cost effective media strategy that focuses on using news channels to advertise, using Baba Ramdev's personal credibility, and by highlighting the natural positioning of its products. Notwithstanding the free publicity that Ramdev gets on various TV channels, in 2016 alone, Patanjali Ayurved inserted as many as 1.14 million advertisements across television channels, as per data from viewership measurement agency BARC India. Consider this: Patanjali advertisements were displayed on TV channels for 7,221 hours across 161 channels. That translates into an average of 19 hours 43 minutes of advertising time every day. Interestingly, Patanjali is the fastest growing FMCG company in India. Within two years of its scale up, it has already crossed revenues of Rs 5,000 crore and the company claims it will end the current fiscal with revenues upwards of Rs 10,000 crore. It’s not only a high voltage media … [Read more...]

Ties between Russia and the Taliban worry Afghan, U.S. officials

February 1, 2017

KABUL (Reuters): Afghan and American officials are increasingly worried that any deepening of ties between Russia and Taliban militants fighting to topple the government in Kabul could complicate an already precarious security situation. Russian officials have denied they provide aid to the insurgents, who are contesting large swathes of territory and inflicting heavy casualties, and say their limited contacts are aimed at bringing the Taliban to the negotiating table. Leaders in Kabul say Russian support for the Afghan Taliban appears to be mostly political so far.But a series of recent meetings they say has taken place in Moscow and Tajikistan has made Afghanintelligence and defense officials nervous about more direct support including weapons or funding. A senior Afghan security official called Russian support for the Taliban a "dangerous new trend", an analysis echoed by the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General John Nicholson.He told reporters at a briefing in Washington last … [Read more...]

Uncertainty for homeowners as BuiltonCorp placed into voluntary administration

February 1, 2017

Work has stopped on about 110 residential home building sites as Perth builder BuiltonCorp is placed into voluntary administration. Administrators Con Cordis have announced the company owes about $16 million to 350 unsecured creditors, mostly subcontractors. They also said 38 jobs at the company had been axed, and a priority would be to return any unpaid entitlements to those workers. The administrators were also appointed to Builton Group, Builton Property Holdings and Aspireon Homes. "As we were only appointed yesterday, we are still in the process of investigating the companies' financial positions, but what is clear is that the companies are unable to continue to trade," Cor Cordis partner Dino Travaglini said. "Work was suspended on sites last week on approximately 110 residential homes under construction for private home owners." BuiltonCorp Pty Ltd had a turnover last financial year of $80 million. WA building industry 'on its knees' Owner of Anstey Cabinets Dennis te Wierik … [Read more...]

SA child protection worker psychometric testing in limbo

February 1, 2017

A new psychometric testing regime for South Australia's child protection workers has been put into limbo, with the public sector union lodging a dispute in the Industrial Relations Commission. The testing is already used for new applicants, but Public Service Association general secretary Nev Kitchin has concerns about 350 current residential care workers being put under the same scrutiny. "First and foremost, it is the welfare of the children that is paramount to everybody involved in this matter, but there are also very serious industrial rights and privileges that are entitled to employees," he said. "They [staff] have been through the wringer and yet again they feel they are being targeted as being the culprits." The crimes of paedophile carer Shannon McCoole exposed big weaknesses in the state's child protection system. The tougher testing regime comes after the Child Protection Systems Royal Commission, which recommended that new workers undergo psychological assessment. It did … [Read more...]

India budgets for recovery, and for the poor, after cash crunch –

February 1, 2017

Addressing parliament, Jaitley called his fourth budget one for the poor. Yet, while vowing prudent fiscal management, he also raised his 2017/18 federal deficit target to 3.2 percent of gross domestic product to cover his spending promises. Jaitley called India "an engine of global growth" but highlighted risks to its outlook from likely US interest rate hikes, rising oil prices and signs that globalisation is in retreat. Prime Minister Narendra Modi's surprise decision last November to scrap high-value banknotes worth 86 percent of India's cash in circulation has hit consumer demand, disrupted supply chains and hurt capital investments. The worst of the cash crunch is now over, however, and Jaitley said he expected it would not spill over into the fiscal year starting on April 1. A private manufacturing survey on Wednesday showed business was slowly returning to normal. Still, the finance ministry forecasts that growth could dip to as low as 6.5 percent in the current fiscal year to … [Read more...]

China’s manufacturing shows signs of stabilizing economy

February 1, 2017

CHINA'S manufacturing sector has expanded for the sixth month in a row, a sign the economy is stabilizing amid an uncertain global outlook. The country's manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) came in at 51.3 in January, 0.1 lower than in December, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) Wednesday. A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while below 50 reflects contraction. NBS statistician Zhao Qinghe said the readings in January had remained at a high level since 2012, which pointed to steady expansion of the manufacturing sector. The sub-index for production was 53.1, 0.2 lower than in December, while the sub-index for new orders was down 0.4 to 52.8. Zhao attributed the deceleration of production and new orders to the Lunar New Year holiday, which reduces work days. China reported 6.7 percent GDP growth in 2016, lower than in recent years but within the government's target range. Zhao noted that the sub-index for the high-tech manufacturing … [Read more...]

Landmark rulings on same-sex marriage see US Supreme Court move to the left

February 1, 2017

With four justices appointed by Democratic presidents and five by Republican leaders, the US Supreme Court is generally perceived as being weighted in favour of conservatives. But after two historic rulings in a week supporting progressive causes -- legalizing gay marriage across America and upholding President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul -- the conservatives are lashing out. They are slamming what they see as a blatant disregard of the law in favour of a win in the court of public opinion. Ultra-conservative justice Antonin Scalia called the 5-4 ruling in favour of legalizing gay marriage nationwide a “judicial putsch” that was “lacking even a thin veneer of law.” “Just who do we think we are?” asked Chief Justice John Roberts, who also opposed the gay marriage ruling. He said the ruling had “nothing to do with” the Constitution and blasted the decision as “an act of will, not legal judgment.” Scalia also … [Read more...]

Divided Hong Kong won’t pass gay marriage law ‘in my lifetime’, says equality watchdog chief

February 1, 2017

The head of Hong Kong’s equality watchdog cast doubt on the prospect of Hong Kong adopting a same-sex marriage law, saying this would likely not happen in his lifetime because the city remained divided on the issue. Dr York Chow Yat-ngok, 68, head of the Equal Opportunities Commision (EOC), said the watchdog had no power or mandate to propose such a law. Chow was commenting today during a Commercial Radio talk show about the impact of the US Supreme Court’s landmark decision [1] last week to legalise same-sex marriage nationwide and to deem it a fundamental right. The US ruling, decided by a 5-4 vote by Supreme Court justices, was hailed as a hard-won victory for LGBT rights [2], coming after decades of litigation and lobbying by gay rights activists. Asked if he thought Hong Kong would adopt the same attitude in his lifetime, Chow laughed and said: “I don’t know how long I will live. I am quite old now.” WATCH: Chinese gay and lesbian couples wed in … [Read more...]

Lunar New Year holiday celebrated across China People managing Spring Festival rush Duchess of Cambridge meets families at children’s hospice UK issues rooster coins for Chinese New Year Photo shoot blends art and style Top 10 most competitive cities in the world Premier Li gives villagers Spring Festival gifts

February 1, 2017

People watch performance at Qingjiangpu temple fair during Chinese Lunar New Year holiday in Huai'an city, East China's Jiangsu province, Jan. 30, 2017. [Photo/Xinhua] … [Read more...]

Trump picks new US Supreme Court justice, Democrats expected to resist

February 1, 2017

US President Donald Trump announced Tuesday night he has nominated judge Neil Gorsuch as the new justice for the Supreme Court, a move expected to meet with resistance from Democrats. "Judge Gorsuch has outstanding legal skills, a brilliant mind, tremendous discipline and has earned bipartisan support," said Trump in his first televised address from the White House. In a quick response, House Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi blasted Trump's choice as "a very hostile appointment" and "a very bad decision, well outside the mainstream of American legal thought." Gorsuch, a 49-year-old judge sitting on the 10th Circuit, US Court of Appeals in Denver, Colorado, is the youngest nominee in 25 years to the lifetime position. However, nasty partisan fights are expected ahead over Gorsuch's confirmation in the Senate, where Supreme Court nominees can be filibustered. Pelosi said Senate Democrats, holding 48 seats in the Senate, should apply the "strongest scrutiny" during Gorsuch's … [Read more...]