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Monks shot dead in Thai south

Gunmen in Thailand’s deep south shot dead two Buddhist monks and wounded two others inside a temple, police said yesterday, capping a week of deadly violence as Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha vowed to “punish” those responsible. Black-clad assailants with rifles on Friday evening crept intoFULL STORY

Burmese army kills 13 in Rakhine

The Burmese army on Friday said it killed 13 ethnic Rakhine fighters in counterstrikes after the well-armed group carried out deadly attacks on police posts earlier this month. Rakhine State has seen new levels of violence in the past few weeks between the Arakan Army (AA)FULL STORY

Indonesia to release cleric

Abu Bakar Bashir, the militant Muslim cleric and alleged mastermind of the 2002 Bali bombings, is to be granted early release from jail on humanitarian grounds, Indonesian President Joko Widodo said on Friday. Bashir, 81, who is considered the spiritual leader of the Islamist group JemaahFULL STORY

Henry Sy, tycoon who started as shoe seller, dies at 94

Henry Sy (施至成), who became a billionaire by parlaying a shoe store into the biggest retailer in the Philippines, has died. He was 94. He died in his sleep yesterday morning, his daughter, Teresita Sy-Coson, and SM Investment s chairman Jose Sio said. Sy had a netFULL STORY

Lebanon urges league to readmit Syria

Lebanon on Friday used an Arab economic meeting to urge the Arab League to restore Syria’s membership, calling it a “historic shame” to keep the Arab country out of the forum. Lebanese Minister of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants Gebran Bassil spoke to Arab ministers at aFULL STORY

Afghan Taliban deny report of talks with US special envoy Khalilzad in Pakistan

The Afghan Taliban rejected reports in the Pakistani media that they were prepared to resume meetings with US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad in Islamabad and repeated their refusal to deal directly with the Afghan government. Pakistani newspapers and television stations reported that a meeting in IslamabadFULL STORY

White cop who shot black teen jailed

The white Chicago police officer who gunned down a black teenager in 2014 was on Friday sentenced to nearly seven years in prison, bringing an end to a historic case that centered on a shocking dashcam video and fueled the national debate over race andFULL STORY

Canada defies Chinese threats over possible ban

Canada will not be deterred by Chinese pressure, Canadian Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said on Friday after China threatened reprisals if Huawei was banned from supplying equipment for 5G networks. There are accusations that the telecom giant is controlled by the Chinese Communist Party orFULL STORY

Mueller disputes report on Trump lawyer testimony

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s office on Friday took the rare step of disputing a news report on his Russia investigation, saying a BuzzFeed article alleging that US President Donald Trump directed his former lawyer to lie to the US Congress is “not accurate.” Trump’s lieutenants hadFULL STORY

FEATURE: Lingerie looking for new bottom line after #MeToo

“We haven’t yet found a better way of selling knickers than a beautiful bottom,” said Sarah Stagliano, one of a new breed of French lingerie designers grappling with how to make exciting underwear in the age of #MeToo. With G-strings and push-up bras losing their allureFULL STORY

Researchers call for law to protect sharks in Hawaii

Two shark researchers who came face to face with what could be one of the largest great white sharks ever recorded are using their encounter as an opportunity to push for legislation that would protect sharks in Hawaii. Ocean Ramsey, a shark researcher and conservationist, toldFULL STORY

World News Quick Take

UNITED STATES Restaurant sign approved Officials in a New Hampshire city have approved a restaurant sign that initially was removed over concerns that it sounded like profanity. The name of the Vietnamese restaurant in a public building next to City Hall in Keene is a play onFULL STORY

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