Top Asian News 4:06 a.m. GMT
BANGKOK (AP) — Aside from his kingly duties — and they were immense — Thailand's late King Bhumibol Adulyadej took time during his 70-year reign to compose music (and jam with some of the world's jazz legends), build sailing craft (and win an international yachting race), paint surrealistic oils and have some 20 patents registered for an assortment of inventions. Here's a look at the many avocations pursued by Bhumibol, who died last week at the age of 88: ___ MUSICIAN "He is simply the coolest king in the land," declared American jazz great Lionel Hampton of Bhumibol's talent on the saxophone.
BANGKOK (AP) — For Thailand's royalists — and there are millions of them — King Bhumibol Adulyadej will probably long remain embedded as a potent, father-like figure who guided them through turbulent decades and espoused ideals of national harmony, labor on behalf of the poor and the virtues of an agrarian society vanishing in the wake of headlong modernization. But how such affection and the king's ideals will impact the country's turbulent political arena and day-to-day life remains to be seen. That depends on how successfully Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn ultimately fills his father's shoes, how the ruling military regime shapes the vacuum left by the politically powerful king and whether Thais translate some of Bhumibol's admonitions — like not succumbing to rampant greed, corruption and environmental exploitation — into practice.
BEIJING (AP) — China's state news agency says this week's visit by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte points toward a restoration of trust between the sides following recent tensions over their South China Sea territorial dispute. Xinhua said that Duterte's arrival on Tuesday would be a step toward ending years of estrangement between the countries. Duterte has said he wants to reduce contacts with treaty ally the U.S. in favor of closer ties with the rising Asian superpower. Xinhua said Duterte's visit shows the "bad blood between Beijing and Manila has finally begun to give place to good faith." It said a verdict issued by an international arbitration panel in the Netherlands that denied China's claims in the South China Sea had no bearing in discussions between the sides.
NEW DELHI (AP) — A fire broke out late Monday at a private hospital in a city in eastern India, killing at least 23 people, India's federal health minister said. Minister J.P. Nadda disclosed the death toll from the fire at the Sum Hospital in the city of Bhubaneswar in an interview with the Times Now TV news station. Doctors at two local hospitals told the Press Trust of India news agency that 22 people were dead on arrival at their facilities. They said more than 20 people were being treated for injuries. The slight discrepancy in casualty figures could not be resolved.
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — A U.S. Navy warship will visit New Zealand next month for the first time since the 1980s, ending a 30-year-old military stalemate between the countries that was triggered when New Zealand banned nuclear warships. New Zealand Prime Minister John Key announced Tuesday that he had given clearance for the destroyer USS Sampson to visit during celebrations marking the Royal New Zealand Navy's 75th anniversary. The visit marks a continued thaw in military relations between the countries that had turned frosty when New Zealand enacted its nuclear-free policy in the mid-1980s. The policy prevents ships that have nuclear weapons or are nuclear powered from visiting.
HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Vietnam is bracing for Typhoon Sarika as the death toll from flooding in the central part of the country triggered by heavy rains rose to 31. The typhoon with sustained winds of 165 kph (103 mph) and gusts of up to 200 kph (124 mph) is moving toward northern Vietnam at 15 kilometers per hour (9 miles per hour), the national weather forecast center said Tuesday. It warned that heavy rains are expected Tuesday night and Wednesday in the northeast of the country. The government has urged ships and vessels to stay away from the typhoon path in the South China Sea and take shelter.
TOKYO (AP) — International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach is set to meet Tokyo's outspoken governor pushing for changes to some of the planned venues for the 2020 Games. Bach arrived Tuesday in Japan amid growing tension between Olympic organizers and Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike over her cost-cutting proposals. They include moving a rowing and canoeing venue relocation to northern Japan after the estimated costs for the current site rose to seven times more than the initial estimate. Koike's proposal is based on a review by a panel of independent experts who reviewed venues and costs. Tokyo organizers object to a possible change, arguing the venue should remain at the planned Sea Forest Waterway.
BANGKOK (AP) — A Thai woman accused of insulting the country's late king was forced to kneel before his portrait at a police station on the tourist island of Samui as several hundred people bayed for an apology. The woman's arrest and public shaming on Sunday was the latest of several such incidents since King Bhumibol Adulyadej died last week after a reign of 70 years, plunging Thailand into intense mourning. Two police officers led 43-year-old Umaporn Sarasat to a picture of Bhumibol in front of Bophut police station, where she knelt and prayed, both on the way into the station and the way out.
BANGKOK (AP) — Pop-up clothes dyeing centers are a new phenomenon in the Thai capital as black apparel becomes too expensive for many following the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The Thai government has declared national mourning for Bhumibol, who died Thursday, and some clothing sellers have been quick to hike prices for black garments. Others have run out of stock. Vats of black dye were boiling nonstop Monday at a free dying station set up in downtown Bangkok by a tractor importing company. Volunteers rushed to write down names and contact information from a stream of visitors bringing in colored clothes.
BEIJING (AP) — For Yu Shuiping and other Chinese veterans, the country they served has yet to show its gratitude. Fed up with paltry pensions and benefits, they're taking to the streets, hoping to shame the government into recognizing what they say is its obligation to those who battled in harsh conditions along the country's borders. While largely peaceful, the sporadic protests amplify concerns over labor unrest and threaten to undermine rank-and-file support for Communist Party leader Xi Jinping's campaign to modernize the world's largest-standing military by attracting better qualified and more highly motivated soldiers. "We support the party and the government, and we don't oppose the party or hate society," Yu said in a phone interview from his home in the central province of Hunan.