Asia Briefs: Malaysia praised for anti-laundering efforts

Malaysia praised for anti-laundering efforts

ZURICH • While Malaysia's premier faces tough questions over the origin of hundreds of millions of dollars transferred to his bank accounts, the country has tentatively received good grades for its anti-money-laundering efforts from a team of international experts.

A draft report by the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global body which monitors how countries fight illicit financial flows, said Malaysia had put in place a "robust policy framework" to combat money laundering. But it said the Asian country needed to be more effective in targeting high-risk offences and needed to pay more attention to transnational crime.

The draft, dated Aug 4 and marked for official use, said the FATF inspection team found the Malaysian government had a "strong political commitment and well-functioning coordination structures" to fight money laundering and that "significant resources have been allocated" to investigations in this field.

The FATF report, which is yet to be made public and could be subject to changes, comes as a high-profile financial scandal is undermining Malaysia's political stability and has hit its currency, the ringgit. REUTERS

Forbidden City to be opened up further

TIANJIN • Almost all of Beijing's Forbidden City will be opened to the public, under plans announced by the administrators to make accessible many parts that have been off limits.

Eighty per cent of the site, known in China as the Palace Museum, will be open from 2020, up from the current 65 per cent, and the long-term goal is 85 per cent, compared with 30 per cent 13 years ago, curator Shan Jixiang said at an international eco-city forum in Tianjin City yesterday.

Some administrative and ancillary facilities are being removed and old architecture renovated in preparation for the wider opening. XINHUA

Boy, 4, killed as Nepali cops fire on protesters

KATHMANDU • A four-year-old boy was among four people killed late on Tuesday when police in Nepal opened fire on a crowd of people demonstrating against a new national Constitution due to be introduced this week.

Police said they opened fire after protesters threw petrol bombs and stones at security forces, attacked police vehicles and vandalised a police station in the southern district of Rupandehi. AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 17, 2015, with the headline 'AsiaBriefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe