Asia Briefs: Thai politicians accused of sedition

Thai politicians accused of sedition

BANGKOK • Three politicians from the party ousted by Thailand's generals were charged yesterday with sedition for holding a press conference, as dissent grows before the fourth anniversary of the junta's 2014 coup.

The military filed a case after senior Puea Thai figures railed against the coup organisers at their party's headquarters last week, blasting the generals for breaking repeated promises to restore democracy.

The military now says it will allow elections next February but has refused to lift its ban on politics or on gatherings of more than five people.


China's mosques told to raise its flag

BEIJING • All Chinese mosques should raise the national flag to "promote a spirit of patriotism" among Muslims, the country's top Islamic regulatory body has declared, as the Communist Party seeks to tighten its grip on religion.

Flags should be hung in a "prominent position" in all mosque courtyards, the China Islamic Association said in a letter published last Saturday on its website. Mosques should also publicly display information on the party's "core socialist values", and explain them to devotees via Islamic scripture so that they will be "deeply rooted in people's hearts", it added.


Nipah virus kills 3 in south India

NEW DELHI • A deadly virus carried mainly by fruit bats has killed at least three people in southern India, sparking a statewide health alert yesterday.

Eight other deaths in Kerala state are being investigated for possible links to the Nipah virus, which has a 70 per cent mortality rate. Nipah was first identified in Malaysia in 1998. It spread to Singapore and over 100 people were killed in both places. On that occasion, pigs were the virus hosts, but they are believed to have caught it from bats.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 22, 2018, with the headline 'Asia Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe