China to send millions of students to rural areas
BEIJING • China aims to send millions of students to work as volunteers in rural communities and set up entrepreneur organisations as it renews a push to narrow a yawning gap between rural and urban regions.
The drive reflects the ruling Communist Party's desire to raise the status of rural areas, where 577 million people live, to avert a risk of social unrest, boost consumption and investment, and rein in growth of big cities.
In a March 22 document, the Communist Youth League said it aimed to organise more than 10 million volunteering trips by 2022.
200m pigs in China to be culled due to swine fever
BEIJING • Up to 200 million pigs could die or be culled from being infected as African swine fever spreads through China, Rabobank said. It is by far the highest such forecast yet, underscoring the gravity of the epidemic in the world's top pork producer. The drop would drag down China's pork output by 30 per cent this year from last year, Rabobank said in a statement late on Thursday.
Japan court extends Ghosn's detention
TOKYO • The Tokyo District Court said yesterday it had extended Carlos Ghosn's detention period by eight days, giving prosecutors until April 22 to bring formal charges against the former Nissan Motor boss or let him go.
Ghosn was arrested for the fourth time last week on suspicion that he had tried to enrich himself at Nissan's expense, to the tune of US$5 million (S$6.8 million).
Suicide blast in Pakistan market kills 18, injures 48
QUETTA • A suicide bomb ripped through an outdoor market in Pakistan yesterday, killing at least 18 people, half of them ethnic Hazaras, officials said, in an attack apparently aimed at minority Shi'ite Muslims.
Some 48 people were wounded in the blast in the south-western city of Quetta, the capital of the resource-rich Baluchistan province, officials said.