Author: Thawda Ag

he Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Monday advised Filipino travelers to “exercise extreme caution”due to the ongoing crisis in Myanmar and illegal recruitment activities. According to BI, Myanmar is alert level 2, also known as the restricted phase due to conflicts. “This means that only documented overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) are allowed to travel to Myanmar, with stringent protocols and safeguards in place,” BI Commissioner Norman Tansingco said in a statement. The precaution stemmed from the repatriation of four Filipinos who fell victim to illegal recruiters. They arrived in Manila from Yangon, Myanmar on November 21. The BI said that…

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Last week, Thailand’s Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin made his first visit to the headquarters of the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) at Ruen Ruedi Palace in Bangkok. In addition to serving as prime minister and finance minister, Srettha also serves as director of ISOC, which was set up in the 1960s as part of a broader effort to not only surveil potential communist threats but also extend the influence of the Thai military into broader areas of society. ISOC’s less than stellar reputation was reflected in a social media post by Adisorn Piengkes, the chief government whip for the Pheu Thai Party in Parliament,…

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Berlin (25/11 – 90) Eight United Nations experts are awaiting a response from Tajik authorities to a letter expressing concern about the fate of convicted journalists and civil activists. UN experts and special rapporteurs in their letter demanded an explanation from Dushanbe regarding reports of gross violations of the rights of nine convicted journalists and bloggers, as well as civil activists. The letter dated 12 May 2023, is published here. UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, Mary Lawlor has visited Tajikistan earlier to address the human rights violations in the country. In their appeal, which UN experts…

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Attacks on journalists have become a frequent occurrence in Tajikistan in recent years. Why are those responsible for attacks on journalists remain unpunished? Berlin (23/11 – 67) November 2 is the “International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists”. The date was chosen in commemoration of the assassination in Mali of Claude Verlon and Ghislaine Dupont, two French journalists, on November 2, 2013. The 2023 observance seeks to raise awareness of the main challenges faced by journalists and communicators in the exercise of their profession, and to warn of the escalation of violence and repression against them. Attacks on…

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BEIJING, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) — China’s top anti-graft official, Li Xi, held talks with Tran Cam Tu, a member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee and head of the Committee’s Inspection Commission, in Beijing on Monday, vowing to enhance inter-party exchanges and deepen anti-corruption cooperation. Li, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and secretary of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, said that China is willing to strengthen high-level exchanges with Vietnam, enhance political mutual trust, continue the traditional friendship,…

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Paris (08/11 – 75) Sri Lanka’s economic and political crisis of 2022 left the country bankrupt. Ranil Wickremesinghe took over as President of Sri Lanka in July 2022 when the country was in the middle of its worst economic and political crisis since independence in 1948. His predecessor, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, had been forced out of power after facing mass protests prompted by 12-hour power cuts and persistent fuel and food shortages. The nation was bankrupt.Wickremesinghe brought in the International Monetary Fund and has focused on reaching macroeconomic stability and driving tough but much-needed structural reforms. Today, as Sri Lanka embarks…

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In its “Vietnam Macro Monitoring” report in September, the WB said the consumer price index (CPI) grew from 3 percent in August to 3.7 percent in September, continuing a sharp upward trend that started in June Inflation was due to higher prices of food and foodstuffs as well as housing and construction materials. Additionally, the price of transport services contributed 0.3 percentage points to CPI inflation due to the new round of oil price increases registered during July-September this year. In stark contrast, core inflation which excludes food, fuels, and government-administered prices, continued to soften from 4 percent in August…

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Copenhagen (26/10 – 76.9) UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Nazila Ghanea called on Tajikistan to adapt and review its laws, policies, and practices regarding religion or belief following her 10-day visit. She stated that the implementation of religious freedom and belief in the country is a cause for concern. During a press conference at the UN office in Tajikistan, she also urged Tajikistan’s authorities to “leave the past behind and protect freedom of religion and belief.” Ghanea stated, “This will contribute to development, peace, and understanding in the country. The shadow of civil war looms over…

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Earlier this month, activists urged Indonesian authorities to investigate potential sales by state-owned arms makers to Myanmar via an alleged shell company owned by the son of a junta minister. The allegation is far from the first or only such case that has shed light on a covert regional trade network funneling crucial resources to the Myanmar junta, which seized power in 2021 and plunged the country into violent civil unrest. The coup two years ago drew condemnation from countries across the world, and the United Nations General Assembly passed a non-binding arms embargo prohibiting the supply of weapons to…

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The counterterrorism expert and author of “Sri Lanka’s Easter Sunday Massacre: Lessons for the International Community” explains how religious extremism manifested in Sri Lanka’s deadliest terror attack. On April 21, 2019 – Easter Sunday – a coordinated series of bombings ripped through Sri Lanka, targeting churches and luxury hotels. Over 260 people were killed, making it the deadliest terrorist attack ever suffered by Sri Lanka. The attack has continued to resonate in Sri Lankan society and politics, as the public demands to untangle questions of responsibility: Why was the attack not prevented, and what can be done to stop the…

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