UN concerned by Malaysian security law
KUALA LUMPUR • The United Nation's human rights body yesterday said it was "gravely concerned" by a new Malaysian security law coming into force next week that grants the government extraordinary emergency powers.
The government rammed the National Security Council Act through Parliament last December, giving it powers to declare virtual martial law in any area deemed to be under security threat. The law allows the government to suspend civil liberties in certain areas.
Shopkeeper 'kills couple over 30 cents'
NEW DELHI • An axe-wielding shopkeeper hacked a couple to death in northern India on Thursday after they failed to pay a debt of 15 rupees (30 Singapore cents), the police said.
A police officer said the couple, who belonged to the so-called low-caste Dalit community, had bought goods from the shop last week with a promise to pay the 60-year-old owner within a few days. "Their refusal to pay made him angry and he killed them," he said. The owner was arrested soon after the incident.
Driver in Taiwan tour bus crash 'was drunk'
TAIPEI • The driver of a tour bus which crashed and caught fire in Taiwan, killing dozens of Chinese tourists, was drunk when the accident happened, investigators said yesterday. Tests on the remains of the driver - who died in the crash, along with 25 others - found an alcohol concentration of 1.075mg per litre of breath, prosecutors said in a statement.