PHUKETWAN recognises the importance of Asean with the Economic Community approaching and marks what's happening around the region with a column, Asean Today, that will cease when Phuketwan closes on December 31.
abcnews.go.com The embattled speaker of Indonesia's House of Representatives, Setya Novanto, resigned over his involvement in one of the biggest political scandals in years, in which he allegedly sought kickbacks from a giant US-owned gold and copper mine in exchange for helping it extend its operating contract.
asiafoundation.org A study, conducted by the Open Institute, and supported by The Asia Foundation and USAID/Development Innovations, found that overall smart phone penetration is now at 39.5 percent. The rapid growth in smart phones is closely linked to the blistering pace of Cambodia's economic growth, averaging seven percent in the past five years and poised to soon graduate to lower middle-income status.
straitstimes.com A man has set the police on his own teenage son, after the boy stole his smartphone that apparently had a RM100,000 (S$32,649) piece of software in it. Even the police were taken aback by the demands of the man, who showed no emotion as officers remanded the 14-year-old boy.
rt.com Typhoon Melor has hit the Philippines, killing at least thirteen people and forcing thousands to flee. The disaster also caused significant damage in several of the country's provinces.
reuters Myanmar jade miners say they cannot stand up to Chinese tycoons who buy influence and invest in modern heavy machinery like Caterpillar and Komatsu earth-excavators. Processions of giant trucks, with eight-foot high wheels, are a common sight in the area and all belong to Chinese firms.
channelnewsasia.com Madonna's official website indicates a concert is scheduled here for February 28, although ticketing details have yet to be announced.
AP The US is calling for Laos to immediately resolve the case of prominent activist Sombath Somphone whose abduction three years ago sent a ''chilling message'' to Laotian people and civil society. The State Department statement came as the top US envoy for East Asia prepares to travel to communist-governed Laos, which next year will chair the Southeast Asian regional bloc, a key diplomatic partner for Washington.
inquirer.net An Australian military surveillance plane has flown near disputed areas of the South China Sea, it emerged on Wednesday, with the crew heard warning China's Navy it was on a freedom of navigation mission.
rfa.org Authorities in Vietnam detained dissident lawyer Nguyen Van Dai on charges of ''propaganda against the state,'' according to his wife and state media, one week after masked assailants beat him in what he called a reprisal for educating members of the public about their human rights.