Asia this week: 8 – 14 July 2021

Summary of key events in Asia over the past week.

MFR Graphic

MFR Graphic

🇧🇩 Bangladesh

Dwarf cow draws thousands during strict lockdown

Thousands defy nationwide coronavirus lockdown to see Rani, a 20-inch tall cow whose owners claim it is the world's smallest.

At least 52 dead in blaze

Police have arrested the owner of the factory where at least 52 people died in a blaze, with children as young as 11 known to have been working there.

🇨🇳 China

America looks to set up 'red phone' to China

The Biden administration is examining the possibility of setting up an emergency hotline with the Chinese government reminiscent to the "red phone" established between the US and the Soviet Union during the Cold War, which allowed for direct communication with the Kremlin as a way to avert nuclear war.

🇮🇳 India

Modi reshuffles cabinet

PM Narendra Modi ejects 12 senior ministers, opting for a younger team, in a bid to improve his government’s image.

Hunger across country rocked by second wave of COVID-19

Those unable to access subsidised food see desperate conditions, as worst hunger in two decades reported.

Muslim women offered for sale in ‘auction’

Photographs of more than 80 Muslim women put up for sale on an app trigger outrage and calls for action.

India’s first Covid patient tests positive again

A medical student from  Kerala, the first in India to test positive, has been infected with the virus again.

🇲🇾 Malaysia

Cabinet ministers pledge support to PM

The backing comes a week after the United Malays National Organisation, the largest party in the ruling coalition, retracted support for PM Muhyiddin Yassin and demanded he step down for failing to control the worsening COVID-19 situation.

Virus-stricken vaccination centre shut down

A vaccination centre was shut down on Tuesday after more than 200 staff and volunteers tested positive for the COVID-19.

🇳🇵 Nepal

Sher Bahadur Deuba sworn in as PM

Sher Bahadur Deuba, leader of the Nepali Congress party, takes over as prime minister after top court reinstates parliament.

🇵🇰 Pakistan

Five Chinese trawlers detained for alleged illegal fishing

The trawlers were detained on suspicion of illegal fishing near the port city of Gwadar, with protests led by fisherman sweeping across the region among concerns of losing control of their fishing grounds to China.

Bus blast kills 13

Nine Chinese workers were among 13 killed on Wednesday when a blast on a bus sent it careering down a ravine in northwestern Pakistan..

🇸🇬 Singapore

Temasek fund hits record

The sovereign wealth fund posted a 25 percent increase in its portfolio value, its best for a decade, as asset values bounced back in the year to March.

Green broadbill declared ‘extinct’ spotted

A rare sighting of the once “extinct” green broadbill bird in Singapore creates stir among bird enthusiasts. The bird known for its highlighter-green plumage was spotted on the offshore isle of Pulau Ubin.

🇱🇰 Sri Lanka

Rajapaksa family influence grows with ministerial picks

Basil Rajapaksa is appointed finance minister by older brother President Gotabaya Rajapaksa further consolidating power within family currently ruling the country.

Economy in crisis as debt mounts

Cut backs on imports enforced as foreign exchange reserves dwindle, hindering the ability to repay a mountain of debt as the nation struggles to recover from the pandemic.

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