Sewol ferry salvage may drag on till 2017
SEOUL • South Korea says efforts to lift the Sewol ferry that sank more than two years ago may drag on into next year, with salvage operations hampered by poor visibility and the sheer scale of the undertaking.
The 6,825-ton vessel was carrying 476 people when it capsized and sank off the south-western island of Jindo in April 2014, killing 304 people.
The wreck lies 40m beneath the surface, Maritime Minister Kim Young Suk said in a TV interview on Sunday.
Bangladesh hangs Islamist extremist
DHAKA • The prison authorities in Bangladesh's southern city of Khulna have executed a senior Islamist extremist, whose banned group has been linked to an attack in July on an upmarket Dhaka cafe in which 22 people, mostly foreign hostages, were shot and hacked to death.
Asadul Islam, 42, a leader of the Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh, was hanged on Sunday for his role in a 2005 blast that killed two judges.
Japan panel meets on abdication wish
TOKYO • A six-member advisory panel held its first meeting yesterday to discuss a critical issue: Emperor Akihito's wish to abdicate in a few years' time, The Japan Times reported. Japan's post-war Constitution does not provide for the monarch's abdication.