A 6,800-ton South Korean ferry was hoisted to the surface last week nearly three years after it capsized and sank in violent seas off the country's southwestern coast, an emotional moment for the nation as it searches for closure to one of its deadliest disasters. More than 300 people — most of whom were students on a high school trip — died when the Sewol sank on April 16, 2014, touching off an outpouring of national grief and soul searching about long-ignored public safety and regulatory failures.
In other images from the Asia-Pacific region last week, about 50 farmers and activists opposed to a cement factory in Indonesia's Central Java province encased their feet in concrete during a dayslong protest in Jakarta, the capital. Farmers in the village of Kendeng have battled against plans for the factory for years, saying it could taint their water.
Indonesian police fired tear gas to disperse hard-line Muslims protesting against the construction of a Catholic church in a satellite city of Jakarta. Several hundred protesters from a group called Forum for Bekasi Muslim Friendship staged a rowdy demonstration in front of the Santa Clara church in Kaliabang, a neighborhood of Bekasi city, after Friday prayers.
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte met with Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, completing a series of get-acquainted visits with the members of the 10-country Association of Southeast Asian Nations, which the Philippines is chairing this year. During Duterte's visit, the Philippines and Thailand signed agreements on cooperation in agriculture, tourism, and science and technology.