Fri, Dec 22, 2006 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

AGENCIES

■ Malaysia
Floods cause evacuations

Around 50,000 people have been forced to evacuate their flooded homes in the south as the region suffered its heaviest rainfall in a century, news reports said yesterday. The rains, blamed on Typhoon Utor, triggered large-scale flooding, cut off several towns in the southern state of Johor, shut down power and water supplies and disrupted train services. One passenger bus fell into a ravine early yesterday in the southern town of Kota Tinggi but none of the six people on board were injured.

■ Cambodia

Former top cop in custody

A former police chief convicted of masterminding the murder of a judge was flown back to Cambodia yesterday, soon after he lost a court ruling in Malaysia, police said. Cambodia has sought custody of Heng Peo, who was sentenced in absentia to 18 years in jail on charges of organizing the murder of a judge in April 2003. Heng Peo says he was wrongly accused. Heng Peo arrived in Cambodia on a special flight from Malaysia.

■ Malaysia

Memorial plan protests

The opposition yesterday protested against plans to tear down a monument to ethnic Chinese who resisted Japanese occupation, saying it was a sign of the government's disregard for the community. About a dozen members of the Chinese-dominated Democratic Action Party gathered at a private cemetery in western Negeri, Sembilan State, where the monument was erected this year. Party Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng said the government had misinterpreted the "honorable intentions" of the Chinese and instead accused them of being communist sympathizers.

■ Thailand
Old airport may re-open

The government is mulling reopening Bangkok's old international airport, just three months after it closed to make way for the much-heralded Suvarnabhumi airport, an official said yesterday. Almost three months after opening, the new airport has lingering problems led by inadequate bathrooms and seating areas, dirtiness and safety concerns for female flight attendants, who have complained of sexual harassment by construction workers at the site. Low-cost airline operators have asked airport officials to let them move back to Don Muang, saying the new airport has become congested and their costs rose after relocation to Suvarnabhumi.

■ Japan

Top tax official resigns

A top tax official who was handpicked by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe resigned yesterday after he was caught living with his mistress, not his wife, at a government apartment. The resignation of Masaaki Homma, chairman of the Tax Commission, was a personal decision and did not reflect pressure from Abe, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuhisa Shiozaki said. Homma, considered a business-friendly tax expert, was chosen to help spearhead Abe's push for tax reform. Calls for Homma's resignation erupted after the Weekly Post magazine reported earlier this month that he had been living in a plush government apartment in Tokyo with the woman.

■ China

Man kills two schoolkids

A man attacked a group of schoolchildren with a knife in Xinjiang, killing two of them and injuring three others plus their teacher, Xinhua news agency reported yesterday. The man dashed towards the pupils and their teacher when they were about to cross the street in front of their school on Wednesday afternoon, it reported. One pupil died on the spot and another died in hospital, it quoted police as saying. Another three children and the injured teacher were in stable condition, Xinhua said. Police arrested a 38-year-old man but said the motive for the attack was still unknown.

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