Asia Briefs: N. Korea practising to blow up targets in South

N. Korea practising to blow up targets in South

SEOUL • North Korea was practising to blow up South Korean ports and airports with nuclear warheads during its most recent ballistic missile launches, Pyongyang said yesterday.

The test firing of three missiles on Tuesday, in violation of existing United Nations resolutions, was seen as an angry reaction to the planned deployment of a US missile defence system in South Korea.

The launch of two short-range Scud missiles and one medium-range Rodong missile was condemned by the United States, Japan and South Korea, all of which vowed a collective diplomatic response.


Pakistan 'plans to outlaw honour killings soon'

ISLAMABAD • Pakistan plans to pass long-delayed laws against "honour killings" within weeks, said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's daughter yesterday.

Ms Maryam Nawaz Sharif's remarks come in the wake of the high-profile murder of the outspoken social media star, Ms Qandeel Baloch.

The Bill will go before a parliamentary committee as early as today, said Ms Maryam.


Questions remain after Taiwan tour bus disaster

TAIPEI•Taiwanese authorities ordered several tour buses off the road yesterday after one bus caught fire and killed all 26 people on board on Tuesday.

Questions remain over why the emergency doors and windows did not open.

According to local reports, bodies were found stacked at the escape routes at the back of the bus, which was full of Chinese tourists.

The bus caught fire, then crashed into an expressway barrier while on its way to Taipei's main airport in Taoyuan.


Air pollution in China worsening: Greenpeace

BEIJING • Air pollution levels rose in nearly a third of Chinese cities monitored in the second quarter of this year, environmental group Greenpeace said yesterday.

Air quality worsened year on year in 103 cities from April to June, or nearly 30 per cent of all cities that were monitored, Greenpeace said.

China's cities are plagued by severe pollution caused by power stations that burn coal, heavy industries and vehicle use. The issue has become a major source of discontent.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 21, 2016, with the headline 'Asia Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe