Top Asian News 6:50 a.m. GMT




  • In World
  • 2017-11-11 06:50:38Z
  • By Associated Press

DANANG, Vietnam (AP) - Trade ministers from 11 Pacific Rim countries announced an agreement Saturday on pushing ahead with a free-trade deal whose destiny was uncertain after President Donald Trump dropped it. "We have reached an agreement on a number of fundamental parts," Vietnam's trade minister, Tran Tuan Anh, told reporters in the coastal resort city of Danang, on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. But more work must be done before leaders of the countries involved can endorse the plan, said Anh and his Japanese counterpart, Toshimitsu Motegi. The 11 counties remaining in the trade pact rejected by Trump in January have been working to revise the deal to allow them to proceed without U.S.

DANANG, Vietnam (AP) - President Donald Trump stood before a summit of Asian leaders keen on regional trade pacts and delivered a roaring "America first" message Friday, denouncing China for unfair trade practices just a day after he had heaped praise on President Xi Jinping in Beijing. "We are not going to let the United States be taken advantage of anymore," Trump told CEOs on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference. "I am always going to put America first, the same way that I expect all of you in this room to put your countries first." The president - who pulled the United States out of the Pacific Rim trade pact known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership - said the U.S.

President Donald Trump is crossing paths - again - with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Trump and Putin chatted Saturday as they strolled to a brief photo op at the Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort in Danang, Vietnam. Chinese President Xi Jinping flanked Trump's other side. Trump stood in the second row for the photo. Trump and Putin shook hands Saturday morning as leaders of the 21-nation Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation opened their meetings. That followed a Friday night handshake and small talk at the summit's welcome gala. The White House says the two will not hold a formal meeting in Vietnam.

MANILA, Philippines (AP) - Southeast Asia started banding its unwieldy cluster of fledgling democracies, monarchies and authoritarian regimes into an EU-like collective half a century ago, but the diverse region of 620 million people remains hampered by conflicts, poverty, human rights crises and other issues. It has nevertheless evolved into an important arena of discourse, power plays and influence that gathers world leaders in annual summits. Leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations will mark the 10-nation bloc's 50th anniversary with handshakes, unity photo-ops and pageantry in a gala dinner on Sunday. They'll gather for two days of summitry under tight security in Manila starting Monday and meet world leaders led by President Donald Trump to tackle a slew of security worries.

NEW DELHI (AP) - As thick smog crept over India's capital this week and smudged landmarks from view, Nikunj Pandey could feel his eyes and throat burning. Pandey stopped doing his regular workouts and said he felt tightness in his lungs. He started wearing a triple layer of pollution masks over his mouth. And he became angry that he couldn't safely breathe the air. "This is a basic right," he said. "A basic right of humanity." Pandey is among many people in New Delhi who have become more aware of the toxic air in recent years and are increasingly frustrated at the lack of meaningful action by authorities.

GENEVA (AP) - Sri Lanka's government faced increasing pressure Friday to answer for alleged human rights violations following an Associated Press investigation that found more than 50 men who said they were raped, branded or tortured as recently as this year. The men's anguished descriptions of their abuses come nearly a decade after Sri Lanka's civil war ended and days ahead of a review of the Indian Ocean nation by the U.N.'s top human rights body. Doctors, psychologists, lawmakers and rights groups have appealed to the United Nations to investigate the new allegations published by The Associated Press on Wednesday. The AP reviewed 32 medical and psychological evaluations and interviewed 20 men who said they were accused of trying to revive a rebel group on the losing side of Sri Lanka's 26-year civil war.

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) - Another Australian lawmaker announced his resignation on Saturday over a constitutional ban on dual citizens sitting in Parliament, triggering a second by-election that could cost the government its fragile grip on power. John Alexander revealed on Monday that he was waiting on advice from the British Home Office on whether he had inherited citizenship from his English-born father who migrated as a child in 1911. On Saturday, the 67-year-old former professional tennis player told reporters the "balance of probability of evidence is that I most likely am" a dual citizen. "The obligation that I have is that once I do not hold the view that I'm solely Australian, I must resign," Alexander said.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - The United States and South Korea on Saturday started joint naval exercises that will involve three U.S. aircraft carriers in what military officials describe as a clear warning to North Korea. The four-day drills that began in waters off South Korea's eastern coast come as President Donald Trump continues a visit to Asia that has been dominated by discussions over the North Korean nuclear threat. The battle groups of the USS Ronald Reagan, the Theodore Roosevelt and the Nimitz will successively enter the exercise area during the drills that run until Tuesday, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said.

ISLAMABAD (AP) - Pakistan's Foreign Ministry says Islamabad on "humanitarian grounds" has allowed the wife of an Indian naval officer who faces death penalty for espionage and sabotage to meet with him. In a statement late Friday, the ministry said Pakistan has informed the Indian High Commission about its decision. The development came months after the wife of Kulbhushan Jadhav requested Pakistan to allow her to meet with him. Jadhav was arrested in March 2016 and has been convicted and sentenced to death by a military tribunal. Pakistan says Jadhav was working for the Indian spy agency, called RAW. Jadhav in a mercy petition has asked Pakistan to spare his life, but authorities have not taken any final decision yet.

URBANA, Ill. (AP) - For more than four months, Ronggao Zhang has walked to his missing daughter's apartment almost every day. At first, he stood outside, hoping she would show up one afternoon. But even after he was told she'd been kidnapped and was presumed dead, he's continued his routine. "It brings peace and comfort to my heart," Zhang explained in Mandarin, through a translator. His daughter, Yingying Zhang (ying ying zahng), a 26-year-old visiting scholar at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, disappeared June 9 on her way to sign an apartment lease. A former graduate student has been charged with kidnapping and killing her.

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