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US Tsunami warning centre issued tsunami alert in Taiwan.

The U.S. Tsunami Warning Center today issued a tsunami alert in Taiwan. It said hazardous tsunami waves were possible within 300 km of the epicentre along the coasts of Taiwan.  The alert was issued after the southeastern part of the island nation was hit by an earthquake of 6.8 magnitudes today. The US Geological Survey measured the earthquake at a depth of 10 km. Taiwan's weather bureau said the epicentre of the earthquake was in Taitung county which had seen a 6.4 magnitude quake yesterday and numerous aftershocks since then. Local media has reported that several buildings collapsed and trains derailed in Hualien County.  Taiwan’s fire department said all four people were rescued from a building housing a convenience store that collapsed in Yuli, while three people whose vehicle fell off a damaged bridge were rescued and taken to hospital. 

The Taiwan Railway Administration informed that about 20 passengers were evacuated after a train derailed in the area. No casualties have been reported so far.

International Day of Democracy 2022 observed.

The 2022 International Day of Democracy theme importance of media freedom to democracy, peace, and delivering on the Sustainable Development Goals is timely in reminding us that the press plays a crucial role in ensuring accountability of democratic institutions. The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated regression of democracy across the globe and we witnessed governments compromising fundamental freedoms and suppressing information to its people. In this process, many media actors were targeted by the state for simply doing their mandate. As we heal from the pandemic and as restrictions are gradually lifted we must demand and act towards the restoration of a free press, free expression, and widening of civic space. 

The Asia Democracy Network (ADN), on the occasion of the International Day of Democracy 2022, calls on all governments to ensure respect for freedom of press. Journalists should not be seen as a threat, rather partners  carrying a mandate to ensure transparent information and delivery of truth to the public. We reiterate that the media and press is the fourth estate and plays a vital role in ensuring a functioning democracy. The press serves as the citizens’ watchdog on every aspect of democratic governance and free flow of information.

Taking this opportunity, ADN furthermore calls upon the governments in Asia to ensure freedom of expression and widening space for all people. We strongly encourage the active development of strategies to combat misinformation and disinformation which has become an existential threat to the sustainability of democracy and human rights. Misinformation and disinformation must be addressed and it must start with education and not the criminalization of it. Educating the public must be prioritized and this must include relevant stakeholders among them civil society organizations and members of the press.

Lastly, ADN express their highest gratitude and solidarity to members of the press, civil society organizations, and all pro-democrats for their sacrifice and endless effort in keeping the powerful accountable despite all the challenges and threats they are often faced with.

Whole world mourns Queen Elizabeth's death.

Queen Elizabeth, Britain's longest-reigning monarch and the nation's figurehead for seven decades, has died aged 96, Buckingham Palace said on Thursday. "The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon," Buckingham Palace said in a statement. "The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow." Her eldest son Charles, 73, automatically becomes king of the United Kingdom and the head of state of 14 other realms including Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

Her family had rushed to be by her side at her Scottish home, Balmoral Castle, after doctors expressed concern about her health. She had been suffering from what Buckingham Palace has called "episodic mobility problems" since the end of last year, forcing her to withdraw from nearly all her public engagements. Queen Elizabeth II, who was also the world's oldest and longest-serving head of state, came to the throne following the death of her father King George VI on Feb. 6, 1952, when she was just 25. She was crowned in June the following year.

With the news of her dead spread across the whole world, Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi mourned her dead. He shared his condolence message and said that the meetings he had with Queen Elizabeth in the past, will keep linguering in his thoughts for the rest of his life. UNESCO and various other sections of the world mourned  her dead too.

65 killed due to earthquake at Sichuan province, China.

Landslides hampered traffic movement. Power connection and communication lines in villages near epicentre have been snapped. A 6.8-magnitude earthquake struck China’s mountainous Sichuan province on Monday, killing at least 65 persons, reported the Associated Press. The earthquake struck about 40 kilometres from Luding county, The Global Times reported. The county is situated on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau where tectonic plates meet making it prone to earthquakes. Seven earthquakes of more than 2.8 magnitude hit Sichuan within one hour on Monday. The effects of the earthquake were felt in the provincial capital Chengdu, which is 200 kilometres from the epicentre.

The earthquake triggered landslides and damaged buildings leaving many trapped inside the rubble, reported The Global Times. More than 5,000 residents have been rescued so far and a search for the missing ones is underway. Videos from Sichuan province show stones and sand rolling down from the mountains. The traffic movement was hampered due to the rubble. Power connection and communication lines were snapped in villages near the epicentre.

The local meteorological department has said that Luding county will get rains which could interfere with rescue efforts, reported Al Jazeera. Sichuan is already facing a drought. The water levels at hydropower reservoirs have been halved in a month, according to the Sichuan Provincial Department of Economics and Information Technology, reported the Associated Press The reduced hydropower generation in Sichuan has led to curbs on industrial power consumption, reported Reuters.

A Myanmar junta court sentenced ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi to three years in jail “with hard labour”.

A Myanmar junta court sentenced ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi to three years in jail “with hard labour” on Friday, for electoral fraud in the 2020 polls that her party won in a landslide, a source said. The latest sentence, handed down by the closed court, takes the total jail time the Nobel laureate and democracy figurehead is facing to two decades. She was “sentenced to three years’ imprisonment with hard labour”, a source with knowledge of the case said, adding that Suu Kyi, 77, appeared to be in good health. Her lawyers would appeal the ruling, the source added. Detained since a coup last year, Suu Kyi had already been convicted of corruption and a clutch of other charges by a closed junta court and sentenced to 17 years in prison.

Journalists have been barred from proceedings in the military-built capital Naypyidaw and her lawyers have been prevented from speaking to the press. Ex-president Win Myint, who was on trial for the same charge, also received a jail sentence of three years, the source said. A junta spokesman did not respond to a request for comment. The military alleged widespread voter fraud during the November 2020 election, won resoundingly by Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD), although international observers said the poll was largely free and fair. The military has since cancelled the result and said it uncovered more than 11 million instances of voter fraud.

Last month, junta chief Min Aung Hlaing said the military was being “lenient” on Suu Kyi and could have taken “more serious actions” against her. Myanmar was plunged into crisis following the military’s power grab last year, with swathes of the country ravaged by fighting and the economy in free fall. More than 2,200 people have been killed and 15,000 arrested in the military’s crackdown on dissent since it seized power, according to a local monitoring group.

Five Myanmar Natioals held from Churachanpur

Myanmar nationals at Ngathal Village area, CCP PS team conducted a search.

During the search 5 illegal Myanmar nationals (4 Male +1 Female) staying illegally were found.

They could not produce any documents of identity and citizenship therefore were arrested after observing due formalities.

A suo motto case ref FIR No 131(08)2022 CCP PS u/s 14 Foreigners Act has been taken up for further investigation.

Thai court sentences a Thai man to 50 years imprisonment for raping and killing a Myanmar woman

The Thai Kabin Buri court in Prachin Buri province sentenced a Thai man on Tuesday who raped and killed Myint Myint Khaine to 50 years imprisonment.

Thai news reported that the culprit had attended the court hearing virtually.
The victim, who disappeared from her house in the early morning on 14 November 2021, was found four days later, on the evening of 18 November, outside the Kabin Buri town.
The Thai authority arrested Mr Boonlai Buaman hours after Myint Myint Khaine's body was found on 18 November 2021.
Myint Myint Khaine came from Moebye township in southern Shan state, but she was an ethnic Karenni and had worked with the offender at the fish factory.
The lawyer of the victim's family is preparing to fight for securing compensation of up to Baht 5,000 per month for 40 years.

Myanmar regime is set to execute another 41 prisoners

Photo:Insein Prison Execution room
Two days after the execution of four political prisoners on Sunday, news has broken again in Yangon city that the junta regime is set to execute another 41 political prisoners.
A source, as it is claimed, cites prisoners themselves from Insein prison and provides critical information on the Insein prison’s authority in preparing to execute the 41 political prisoners.
The 41 prisoners are wearing yellow uniforms and are placed alongside other prisoners in a cell that houses 100 people.
Today, the 41 prisoners with yellow uniforms have been moved to a different cell in preparation for the execution.
Asked a political activist who is now in hiding and does not want to disclose his name, he says the matter is likely possible due to the junta regime’s losing diplomatic battles at the International Court of Justice.

Chindwin attempted to reach several contacts but was not successful. For this, Chindwin cannot independently verify the report.  

Source: Chindwin News Agency