Asia Briefs: Duterte seeks to extend martial law

Duterte seeks to extend martial law

MANILA • Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will ask Congress to extend martial law in the volatile southern island of Mindanao to quell an insurgency, Cabinet officials said yesterday.

Mr Duterte placed the restive region under military rule on May 23 after Islamist militants took over parts of the city of Marawi. Martial law is due to expire on Dec 31.


Naked selfie duo freed from Thai jail

BANGKOK • Two American men who were arrested in Thailand for posting naked photos on Instagram have reportedly been released from jail and are heading home to San Diego.

Mr Joseph Dasilva, 38, and Mr Travis Dasilva, 36, were arrested at Bangkok's Don Mueang International Airport last month after images on their Travelling Butts Instagram account showed them dropping their trousers at various religious sites in Thailand.

The married couple were arrested as they tried to depart on Nov 28 after their photos went viral.


3 terror suspects caught in East Java

JAKARTA • Indonesia's counter-terrorism police have arrested three suspected terrorists in East Java province.

One suspect, identified only by his initials MM, was apprehended at his residence in the Semampir area. Police did not reveal the terror group he is allegedly affiliated with.

Meanwhile, Antara also reported that two other suspected terrorists were arrested in the province.


Bangladesh wants to 'wipe out' bank

DHAKA • Bangladesh's Finance Minister said he wants to "wipe out" a Philippine bank that was used to channel US$81 million (S$110 million) stolen from the Bangladeshi central bank's account with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York last year.

He made the comments after Bangladesh Bank said it had asked the New York Fed to join a lawsuit it was considering against Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC), seeking damages over the incident. The money was stolen by hackers, sent to accounts at RCBC and then disappeared in the Philippine casino industry.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 11, 2017, with the headline 'Asia Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe