Malaysia's last bachelor crown prince married a Thai science graduate in a traditional Muslim ceremony witnessed by royal dignitaries from both countries and dubbed a fairytale wedding by the local media. \nTengku Muhammad Faris Petra Sultan Ismail Petra, 35, who is next in line to be the sultan of northeastern Kelantan state, wedded Kangsadal Pipitpakdee, 23, at Kelantan's royal palace late Monday in glittering rites known as "akad nikah," or the solemnizing of marriage. \nThe prince recited a sacred oath of marriage in front of a senior cleric and then exchanged rings with Kangsadal, who is the daughter of Viroj Pinitpakdee, a former member of Parliament from the southern Thai province of Pattani. \nThailand's Queen Sirikit, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak and Thai Foreign Minister Surakiart Sathirathai were among the guests at the wedding in Kelantan, a staunchly Islamic state that borders southern Thailand. \nOther details were not immediately available because media outlets were barred from the ceremony. \nHowever, preparations for the event electrified Kelantan's residents and received wide coverage. The Star newspaper called it a "fairytale wedding," while the New Straits Times announced that Tengku Faris would be a "royal bachelor no more." \nTengku Faris was Malaysia's last remaining unmarried crown prince. Nine of the country's 13 states have sultans as ceremonial rulers who take turns to be the king of Malaysia. \nKangsadal, also a Muslim, took the name of Tengku Zubaidah following the wedding. She received a crash course on local customs and royal life over the past three months. \nThe couple reportedly met two years ago at a wedding in Bangkok. \nBanners proclaiming the occasion lined the streets of Kelantan's capital, Kota Bahru. Some roads were closed to the public to ensure that VIP vehicles could proceed smoothly to the palace. \nKangsadal was raised in Pattani, one of three Muslim provinces in predominantly Buddhist Thailand. She later furthered her studies at Bangkok's Mahidol University.
French authorities yesterday said that they would close a Paris mosque as part of a clampdown on radical Islam that has yielded over a dozen arrests following the beheading of a teacher who had shown his pupils a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed. The mosque in a densely populated suburb northeast of Paris had disseminated a video on its Facebook page days before Friday’s gruesome murder, railing against teacher Samuel Paty’s choice of material for a class discussion on freedom of expression, a source close to the investigation said. The French Ministry of the Interior said the mosque in Pantin, which has
LONGSTANDING NEUTRALITY: The US request came as it vied for influence in Southeast Asia with China, but Indonesia has never let foreign militaries operate there Indonesia this year rejected a proposal by the US to allow its P-8 Poseidon maritime surveillance planes to land and refuel there, four senior Indonesian officials familiar with the matter have said. US officials made multiple “high-level” approaches in July and August to Indonesia’s defense and foreign ministers before Indonesian President Joko Widodo rebuffed the request, the officials said. Representatives for Indonesia’s president and defense minister, the US Department of State’s Office of Press Relations and the US embassy in Jakarta did not respond to requests for comment. Representatives for the US Department of Defense and Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs Retno Marsudi
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday night said that he has no problem with being held responsible for the many killings under his crackdown on drugs, and that he is ready to face charges that could land him in jail, but not charges of crimes against humanity. Duterte’s televised remarks were among his clearest acknowledgement of the prospects that he could face a deluge of criminal charges for the bloody campaign he launched after taking office in the middle of 2016. Police have reported that at least 5,856 drug suspects have been killed in raids and more than 256,000 others arrested since
WEIGHING THE RISKS: One biogeochemist said that the known risks of disease from not sterilizing baby bottles outweighed that of microplastics Bottle-fed babies might ingest more than 1 million pieces of microplastics each day, new research showed on Monday, highlighting the abundance of plastics in our food products. There is growing evidence that humans consume huge numbers of the tiny particles, formed when larger pieces of plastic break down, but very little is known about the knock-on health consequences. Researchers in Ireland looked at the rate of microplastic release in 10 types of baby bottles or accessories made from polypropylene, the most commonly used plastic for food containers. They followed official guidelines from the WHO on sterilization and formula preparation conditions. Over a 21-day