Wed, Sep 07, 2005 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ China
Dress code for cabbies

In a bid to spruce up the city's image, Nanjing authorities are banning taxi drivers who are bald, wear their hair too long, have moustaches or wear too much make-up, media said yesterday. The new rules are part of a 10-point plan to smarten up the city ahead of next month's 10th National Games, the news Web site www.sina.com.cn said yesterday, citing the Nanjing Morning Post. "Male taxi drivers cannot have long hair or strange hairstyles, cannot be bald and cannot grow moustaches or goatees," the report said. "Women drivers must not use too much make-up and should wear appropriate clothes." The report did not mention penalties for drivers that break the rules.

■ Hong Kong

Suspected gangsters quizzed

Police questioned 50 suspected triad members yesterday who were arrested outside a newly opened mortuary as they prepared to fight for control of the funeral business racket with rival gangsters. The arrests were made on Monday by some 60 anti-triad officers after learning that rival gangs were preparing to battle for supremacy at the Kwai Chung Mortuary in Kowloon. A police spokesman said the victorious gang would have assumed the right to prey on grieving relatives visiting the morgue to identify dead loved ones, touting the business of legitimate undertakers and claiming a cut of earnings.

■ China

Better anti-abuse laws urged

The government needs to pass legislation specifically against domestic violence, law experts were cited as saying by state media yesterday, criticizing current laws as being inadequate in protecting women. Experts said present legislation that refers to domestic violence was too abstract, the Xinhua news agency said. Chen Mingxia, a law researcher with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, says the definition of domestic violence fails to clearly outline whether psychological damage, economic control and verbal threats qualify. The coverage also does not extend to divorced couples or lovers, she said.

■ Malaysia

Unpopular coin recalled

The government will withdraw the frequently counterfeited and little-used 1 ringgit coin (US$0.25) as legal tender on Dec. 7, and has urged people to exchange their stock of the coins for bank notes. A statement dated Monday posted on the Web site of the central bank said people can turn in their coins at designated banks from today until Dec. 6. The one-ringget bank note will continue to be legal tender, said the statement by Bank Negara. The heavy, gold-colored one-ringget coin, minted and first issued in 1989, was never popular because of its weight.

■ Bangladesh

Two-day weekend mandated

The government has ordered two-day weekends, starting this Friday, as part of an austerity drive to save fuel, officials said yesterday. But workers who were used to working six days a week will have to stay on the job an hour longer, from 9am to 5pm, to make up for the extra day off. Offices have customarily closed at 4pm.

■ Afghanistan

A dozen insurgents killed

US and Afghan government forces killed 12 insurgents and captured nine in a operation in the south aimed at stopping militants from disrupting the Sept. 18 general election, the US military said yesterday. No Afghan or US troops were hurt, the US military said.

■ Archives
Historical records at risk

Federal troops have prevented specialists from rescuing some of the most historic documents in the city's history, from original land grants to slave sale records and title records. The New Orleans Notorial Archives hired Munters Corp, a Swedish document salvage firm that freezes and then freeze-dries records to slowly remove moisture from them, to rescue the documents. But Munters refrigerated trucks were turned away by troops as they tried to enter the city, said Stephen Bruno, the archives' custodian.

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