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Asian News Digest, AS

Asian News Digest, AS

ASIA:

SKOREA-MERS VIRUS -- South Korea believes its MERS virus outbreak may have peaked, and experts say the next several days will be critical to determining whether the government's belated efforts have successfully stymied a disease that has killed seven people and infected nearly 100 in the country. SENT: 740 words, photos.

NEPAL-CONSTITUTION -- Nepal's main political parties have reached agreements on several disputed issues that could lead to the drafting of a much-delayed constitution in the Himalayan nation. SENT: 340 words.

VANUATU-PRINCE PHILIP MOVEMENT -- Standing under his sacred banyan tree, Albi Nagia sings as he cracks open a coconut with a few deft strikes from his bush machete. He chews the meat inside and spits it out in a shower, to the delight of the gathering chickens. He is praying to Prince Philip. Yes, that Prince Philip: the Duke of Edinburgh, Queen Elizabeth II's husband, who celebrates his 94th birthday on Wednesday. By Nick Perry. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

CHINA-EXAM DRONE -- The latest weapon in the fight against cheating on China's all-important college entrance exam is a six-propeller drone. The contraption flew over two testing centers in Luoyang city in central China's Henan province to scan for any unusual signals being sent to devices smuggled by students taking the annual test. SENT: 300 words.

INDIA-MAOIST REBELS -- Police killed at least 12 Maoist rebels in a clash in one of their strongholds in eastern India. The police attacked the rebels as they were on their way to extort money from several mining contractors in Palamau district in Jharkhand state. SENT: 150 words.

CHINA-SHOOTING -- Five people are killed, including two police officers, in a shooting in rural northern China. The early morning shooting in Hebei province's Suning county marked a rare incidence of gun crime in China, where private ownership of firearms is illegal. SENT: 140 words.

AUSTRALIA-TRUCK HITS CAFE -- Nineteen people were hurt after a pickup truck smashed into a cafe in northern Australia, sparking a fire that engulfed the building, police said. Officials were trying to figure out what caused the driver to veer off the road and into the Serves You Right Cafe in Ravenshoe, south of Cairns in Queensland state. SENT: 170 words.

SAMSUNG-SUCCESSION -- A U.S. hedge fund is challenging a takeover deal between Samsung companies designed to ensure control of the conglomerate passes to the grandson of its founder. Elliott Associates L.P., a U.S. hedge fund that is the third-largest shareholder in a Samsung group company Samsung C&T, said Tuesday it filed an injunction against the company and its board of directors to stop an "unlawful" takeover deal. By Youkyung Lee. SENT: 330 words, photos.

US & INTERNATIONAL

OBAMA - Acknowledging military setbacks, President Barack Obama says the U.S. still lacks a "complete strategy" for training Iraqi forces to defeat the Islamic State and urges Iraq to reach out to Sunnis. By Julie Pace and Nedra Pickler. SENT: 820 words, photos, video.

GERMANY-G7 -- The leaders of the Group of Seven wealthy democracies call for moving away from fossil fuels by the end of this century and warn Russia that sanctions will remain in place and could be toughened if a shaky ceasefire in Ukraine is not fully observed. By David Rising. SENT: 750 words, photos. With GERMANY-G7-THE LATEST. With CLIMATE-NO FOSSIL FUELS -- How likely is it that the world could move away from the use of fossil fuels by the end of the century? SENT: 680 words, photo.

ISRAEL-DIRTY BOMB - Israel built and detonated so-called "dirty bombs," explosives laced with nuclear material, to examine how such explosions would affect the country if it were to be attacked by the crude radioactive weapons, the Haaretz daily newspaper reports. SENT: 310 words.

MEXICO-ELECTIONS - Despite widespread disillusionment, Mexicans have given the ruling party coalition a majority in Congress that will allow President Enrique Pena Nieto to forge ahead with his reform agenda without compromising with opponents. By E. Eduardo Castillo and Peter Orsi. SENT: 750 words, photos.

TURKEY-ELECTIONS - For the first time since his party roared into power in 2002, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan appears to have lost control of his political fate after his party squandered a sizable political majority in an election he hoped would clear the way for him to expand his powers. By Desmond Butler and Suzan Fraser. SENT: 910 words, photos. With TURKEY-ELECTIONS-PARTIES (sent).

IRAN-REPORTER - The mother of detained Washington Post correspondent Jason Rezaian says that Iran has charged her son for simply "reporting on a country that he loves," as he addressed the judge overseeing his closed-door espionage trial. By Nasser Karimi. SENT: 640 words, photos, AP VIDEO IRAN US JOURNALIST.

APPLE'S SHOW - Apple announces its biggest push into streaming music yet, with a $10-a-month service called Apple Music that combines on-demand listening, a 24/7 radio station hosted by live DJs and a forum for artists to give fans behind-the-scenes content from upcoming releases. By Ryan Nakashima and Brandon Bailey. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 6:30 p.m. With APPLE SHOW-THE LATEST.

NASA-MARS TEST - NASA is using the skies around the Hawaiian island of Kauai to test new technology that it wants to use for landing larger spacecraft -- and eventually astronauts -- on Mars. SENT: 310 words.

SUPREME COURT-BORN IN JERUSALEM - Siding with the White House in a foreign-policy power struggle with Congress, the Supreme Court rules that Americans born in the disputed city of Jerusalem can't list Israel as their birthplace on passports. By Mark Sherman. SENT: 910 words, photo.

HEALTHBEAT-TICKS-5 THINGS, HFR - Lyme disease makes the headlines but new research highlights the latest in a growing list of tick-borne threats. By Medical Writer Lauran Neergaard. SENT: 700 words, photos.

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HOW TO REACH US: The editor in charge at the AP Asia-Pacific Desk in Bangkok is Scott McDonald. Questions and story requests are welcome.

The news desk can be reached at (66) 2632-6911 or by email at asia@ap.org. The Asia Photo Desk can be reached at (81-3) 6215-8941. Between 1600 GMT and 0000 GMT, please refer queries to the North America Desk in New York at (1) 212-621-1650.

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Updated : 2021-09-29 04:58 GMT+08:00