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In Brief

In Brief

Japan to begin review of GX rocket plans
TOKYO, Japan
Japan will review plans to produce a rocket to launch satellites that is being jointly developed by the government and the private sector, partly due to increased costs, the daily Yomiuri Shimbun reported yesterday.
The daily said the rocket, known as the GX, was due to be launched in the financial year starting April 2011, five years behind an initial plan.
Private investors were forced to look for a new engine manufacturer after a U.S. company that was initially due to provide the part stopped production, the daily said.
Communist rebels
MANILA, Philippines
Communist guerrillas attacked a central Philippine town hall yesterday, killing a pro-government militiaman and seizing several assault weapons in their latest defiance of a military-declared Christmas cease-fire, officials said.
About 50 New People's Army guerrillas bombed a steel door then barged into the Hinabangan town hall at dawn then took an M16 rifle and two grenades from a court room in the two-story building, regional police commander Chief Superintendent Abner Cabalquinto said.
They also took boxes of antibiotics and flu medicine in the mayor's office, he said.
Sri Lankan clashes
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka
Sri Lankan troops fought a series of clashes with Tamil Tiger rebels over the weekend, killing 22 rebels, destroying several bunkers and capturing an insurgent base, the military said yesterday.
Troops killed 8 Tigers early yesterday during a raid on a rebel bunker line on the far northern Jaffna peninsula, and three others in a clash in the northern district of Vavuniya, military spokesman Brigadier Udaya Nanayakkara said.
On Saturday, troops took control of a base on the Tigers' side of a heavily defended "border" that separates government from rebel-held territory, hours after capturing an insurgent checkpoint further west on the forward defense line, he said.
China anti-drug law
BEIJING, China
China is expected to pass its first anti-drug law this week to combat drug-related crimes and reduce the number of abusers, state media said yesterday.
Lawmakers yesterday began reviewing a final draft of the bill with revisions that included raising the age limit for compulsory rehabilitation to 16 from 14.
Opium, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine hydrochloride - commonly known as "ice" - as well as morphine and cocaine were listed as banned drugs in the draft, Xinhua said.
China has about 940,000 registered drug addicts, of which more than 740,000 were hooked on heroin, the official People's Daily said on its Web site www.people.com.cn last week.
Japanese security plan
TOKYO, Japan
Japan's government will drop a plan to create its version of the U.S. National Security Council, an agenda championed by former leader Shinzo Abe to increase his office's authority, reports said yesterday.
Before his abrupt resignation, Abe had called for a stronger premier's office to quicken response time in a potential crisis with North Korea and to better coordinate with the United States.


Updated : 2021-05-10 01:34 GMT+08:00