India to allow women to fly fighter jets
NEW DELHI • India's air force will soon have female fighter jet pilots, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha said yesterday.
"We have women pilots flying transport aircraft and helicopters. We are now planning to induct them into the fighter stream to meet the aspirations of young women of India," he said during Air Force Day celebrations. The air force had not allowed women to fly fighter jets due to fears that they may be tortured if captured in combat.
Pay rise for Cambodian textile workers
PHNOM PENH • Cambodia is to raise the monthly minimum wage in its crucial textile industry to US$140 (S$197) from next year, US$20 short of demands by trade unions long at odds with the government over pay.
The decision was made in a vote by representatives of the government, factories and unions, with the majority supporting an increase to US$135 a month from US$128. The government then raised that to US$140.
Pay for the 600,000 people who work in factories churning out clothes and shoes for the likes of Gap , Nike, Adidas, H&M and Inditex has been a thorny issue in the impoverished country.
Nepal in fuel plea to foreign oil companies
KATHMANDU • Nepal called on foreign oil companies yesterday to airlift fuel into the landlocked country to ease a nationwide shortage as supplies from India remain blocked by protesters.
Scores of trucks have been stranded at a key India-Nepal border checkpoint for almost two weeks, cutting off vital supplies and forcing fuel rationing, as ethnic minorities protest against the Himalayan nation's new Constitution.
The appeal comes ahead of a major festival when many Nepalis leave Kathmandu and travel back to their villages.