Student arrested for post
A student has been arrested for allegedly posting obscene remarks about the father of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Facebook, police said yesterday. Police picked up Al Nayeem Jubaer, 19, from his village at Horinakundu, 200km west of Dhaka, on Monday after scores of angry ruling party activists stormed his house. “We arrested him for making obscene remarks about the birth of Bangabandhu,” local police chief Abul Khaer said, using the nickname of the nation’s founding leader, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the father of Sheikh Hasina. “We have learned that Jubaer’s father is a [opposition party] Jamaat-e-Islami official,” he said, giving no further details about the remarks posted on Facebook. The post was not showing up on Jubaer’s page yesterday. According to Khaer, Jubaer told police he was a victim of password theft, alleging that someone broke into his account on the social networking site.
Beijing demands release
Beijing yesterday called for the immediate release of 29 Chinese workers held by Sudanese rebels, as it dispatched a team to the African nation to help defuse the situation. “China calls on all sides to remain calm and exercise restraint, ensure the safety of Chinese personnel and quickly release the Chinese personnel out of humanitarian concerns,” Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Liu Weimin (劉為民) said. The workers were captured when rebels in the South Kordofan state attacked their camp on Saturday. They have been described as hostages by the military, but rebels say they were side victims of fighting with government troops.
Nuclear ambitions denied
President Thein Sein has denied his country is trying to obtain nuclear weapons from North Korea, describing allegations of a covert program as “unfounded.” “We are not acquiring nuclear weapons from North Korea,” the Straits Times newspaper yesterday quoted him as saying in an interview during a four-day state visit to Singapore. “These allegations are unfounded and based on suspicion by some Western countries.” A 2010 UN report accused Pyongyang of supplying banned nuclear and ballistic equipment to Myanmar, Iran and Syria.
Toddlers have palms read
Several kindergartens in Shanxi Province are charging parents 1,200 yuan (US$190) for a palm-reading test that they claim can predict their toddlers’ intelligence and potential, Xinhua news agency said. Many parents have flocked to palm readers for the test, used in kindergartens in the province and designed for children above the age of three months, the report said. According to the company that designed the tests, Shanxi Daomeng Culture Communication Co, the reading of palms helps “determine the children’s innate intelligence and potential,” Xinhua reported. However, some experts have dismissed the idea of the palm-reading technology. “This technology remains unaccounted for,” Xinhua quote a pediatrics expert as saying.
Police recruited for Xinjiang
Authorities in the Xinjiang region plan to recruit 8,000 extra police officers, a government official said yesterday, as they beef up security in the area. Hou Hanmin (侯瀚民), a spokeswoman for the Xinjiang government, said that authorities planned to employ the first batch of new officers — about 4,000, or half of the proposed total — this year.