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North Korea fires ‘unidentified’ ballistic missile into sea off east coast

North Korea fired a ballistic missile into the sea on Tuesday, South Korea’s military said, the latest in a series of tests by Pyongyang over recent weeks apparently aimed at pressuring Washington and Seoul over stalled nuclear diplomacy.Seoul’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the “unidentified ballistic missile” was fired from Sinpo into the East Sea, also...

Evergrande’s debt crisis sates appetite for risk, forcing 206 plots to withdraw from China’s land auctions since September

Chinese local governments have withdrawn some 206 plots of land from auctions in major cities since last month as buyers tightened their finances after Evergrande’s debt crisis roiled the property market.The plots represented almost one-third of about 700 plots that were put up for sale in 22 cities including Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. Since September,...

Top Hong Kong delegate downplays talk of government divide over Covid-19 tracking system

A pro-Beijing heavyweight’s criticism of Hong Kong’s proposal for sharing a Covid-19 health code system with mainland China has sparked questions about whether a division exists between the pro-establishment bloc and the administration.But Tam Yiu-chung, Hong Kong’s sole delegate to the nation’s top legislative body, on Monday said he was only trying...

Chinese artist dumps 1,000 ‘golden rice grains’ across city to bring attention to food waste, performance backfires

A Chinese artist’s attempt to alert people to the severe problem of food waste in China instead angered the public when he threw 1,000 grains of “golden rice” into Shanghai’s Huangpu River and other parts of the city.The “golden rice” was not rice but rather 500 grams of pure gold shaped into tiny rice-like grains. The gold was estimated to be worth...

Hong Kong’s property mania inflates prices of even the tiniest flats, putting affordability beyond reach for most first-time buyers

A real estate bull market in Hong Kong, the world’s most expensive major city for 10 consecutive years until 2019, has trickled over to inflate the prices of even the smallest habitable homes.The average cost of new micro-apartments, or flats smaller than 200 square feet (18.6 square metres), rose to HK$25,512 per square foot in the first nine months...

Why transport issues are bigger headache for Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam than city’s housing crunch

A common assumption among political watchers is that housing has been a key failing of Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor’s administration.But it has emerged that transport has likely been an equally if not more problematic issue out of all the initiatives Lam raised in annual policy addresses during her four years in office.Railway project...

China’s military tests nurses in nighttime island landing simulation

The People’s Liberation Army is training military nurses using a boat simulator to prepare them for a combat situation involving an island landing.More than 300 nurses from an unspecified military hospital took part in the first round of training from July 2020 to February this year – the first time the PLA has conducted this type of simulation exercise...

Zalmay Khalilzad, US envoy who brokered Afghanistan exit, quits

Zalmay Khalilzad, the veteran US envoy whose months of hotel-ballroom diplomacy helped end the US war in Afghanistan but failed at preventing a Taliban takeover, resigned on Monday.In a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Khalilzad defended his record but acknowledged that he came up short and said he wanted to make way during the “new phase...

‘Deadly’ air strikes hit capital of Ethiopia’s Tigray

Ethiopia’s military launched air strikes on the capital of the war-battered Tigray region on Monday, a dramatic escalation in the year-long conflict.The government initially dismissed reports about the bombardments on Mekele as an “absolute lie” but state media later confirmed the air force had struck Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) targets.A...

Donald Trump sues to keep US Capitol attack records secret

Former US president Donald Trump on Monday sought to block the release of documents related to the January 6 Capitol insurrection to a House committee investigating the attack, challenging President Joe Biden’s initial decision to waive executive privilege.In a federal lawsuit, Trump said the committee’s August request was “almost limitless in scope”,...

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