Najib under investigation, Seoul and Tokyo work together, and more


 

The Asia Brief begins this week with a look the trouble facing Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak. Accused of receiving more than $700 million in illegal funds, several offices have been raided, accounts frozen, and some are even calling for the Prime Minister to step down. The podcast also takes a look at the newest Japanese UNESCO World Heritage Sites and the political wrangling conducted by Seoul and Tokyo to ensure a successful bid. Host Steve Miller also provides an update on the defamation charge against Japanese reporter Tatsuya Kato, how the Philippines is taking charge and handling a ferry sinking, a regional MERS update, and more.

If you enjoyed the podcast, please share it with your friends and if you haven’t, subscribe. Subscribing is free and when you do, the next episode is delivered automatically to you. You can subscribe on our website, AsiaNewsWeekly.net, or in your favorite podcast application.

You’ll be able to keep up with news from the region by following Asia News Weekly on Facebook or Twitter and if you have comments, questions, or feedback, be sure to drop a line to podcast@asianewsweekly.net.

Let The Rainbows Fly: Korean Pride


Hot on the heels of the landmark US Supreme Court decision to allow same-sex marriages nationwide, Seoul held its Pride Parade despite thousands of opponents arriving on scene in an attempt to shut it down.

The Korea Queer Culture Festival celebrated its 16th year during the month of June, but there was a time when it was legitimately questioned if the event would take place. Squaring off against not only “Christian” opposition groups, but also authorities, the event culminated in a thriving Korean Pride Parade that brought out thousands on both sides of the issue.

Asia Now is a special feature of the Asia News Weekly podcast.

If you enjoyed the podcast, please share it with your friends and if you haven’t, subscribe. Subscribing is free and when you do, the next episode is delivered automatically to you. You can subscribe on our website, AsiaNewsWeekly.net, or in your favorite podcast application.

You’ll be able to keep up with news from the region by following Asia News Weekly on Facebook or Twitter and if you have comments, questions, or feedback, be sure to drop a line to podcast@asianewsweekly.net.

2015 Korean Queer Culture Festival Parade



June 28th marked the 16th Korean Queer Culture Festival and its associated Pride Parade. This year, I took the the streets with my iPhone and broadcast the parade live on Periscope (hence the vertical orientation).

Here is this year’s parade from my perspective from start to finish.

2015 Lotus Lantern Parade



Buddha’s birthday is here once again on May 25th and with it is the annual Seoul Lotus Lantern Festival. This year, the parade seemed a little shorter, but still had the amazing dragons at the end. This time, I was able to capture them using my iPhone 5S.

Overall, the phone did quite well. The slow motion effect was done in Final Cut X at 15%.

Stories from Asia: Hong Kong Protests and Plastic Surgery

This week’s special Asia News Weekly features two previously released Asia Now episodes. The first is an interview with Bruce Lui who was in Hong Kong during the protests. The second features interviews with physicians in Seoul’s plastic surgery center.

Hey podcast listeners. I’m taking some time off this week with my family in town. However, this week, I’m presenting two Asia Now episodes still relevant to the region. I’ll be back next week with a regular episode.

To begin this week’s special podcast, I’m presenting an interview I conducted on December 2nd with Bruce Lui, a Senior Lecturer at Hong Kong Baptist University’s School of Communication. We discussed the pro-democracy movement and I began our conversation by asking him to describe the mood of the protests from its inception up through the crackdowns and signaled the movement’s end.

Next is an Asia Now episode from the summer, where I spoke with physicians in Seoul’s plastic surgery capital, getting their opinion on the controversial practice.

Keep up with news from the region by following Asia News Weekly on Facebook or Twitter. You can also send an email to the show with your comments, questions, and feedback. Just drop a line to podcast@asianewsweekly.net. .

Subscribe to this and other podcasts at AsiaNewsWeekly.net or in your favorite podcast application, like iTunes or Stitcher. Subscribing is free and when you do, the next episode is delivered automatically to you.

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City investigates new sinkhole, FTA expected to be signed, PM pledges to improve inter-Korean ties, and Kim Jong-un invited to Bandung

The Korea Times Podcast

Today on The Korea Times Podcast: Seoul officials investigate why two people fell through a sidewalk and South Korea and China look to ink their FTA this week. Plus New Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo promises to improve inter-Korean relations and Kim Jong-un gets an invite to the Asian-African Conference.

TAB: No Gay Rights Charter in Seoul


Just as North Korea faces condemnation for its human rights violations, Seoul sidesteps an equally important issue. Are some human rights more valuable than others? Why can’t Seoul support gay rights?

The Seoul Metropolitan Government Sunday announced it was indefinitely postponing the charter of human rights for citizens of Seoul after fierce protests from gay rights opponents.

The proposed charter was designed to increase awareness of human rights issues at a time when organizations were taking a close look at North Korea. However, a clause in the proposed charter sparked controversy and lingering oppression. The document stated a person “has the right not to be discriminated against based on his or her sexual orientation or sexual identity.”

This debacle raises an interesting question: Does Seoul’s failure to pass a human rights charter eliminate the the nation’s moral position on North Korea’s Human Rights abuses? Granted the violations in the DPRK are egregious, but what does it say about a nation who doesn’t safeguard the rights of all its citizens?

The Asia Brief is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Download the show notes here.

TAB: Protesters clash in Hong Kong, Seoul Mayor champions same-sex marriages, and more


Protest groups clash in Hong Kong, Is Beijing getting ready to remove Leung, Seoul Mayor supports marriage equality, Vongfong sets its sights on Tokyo, and 12 get death sentences in Xinjiang.

It’s Tuesday, October 14, 2014, and this is The Asia Brief.

A new dawn breaks in Hong Kong, bringing with it more questions as to what will ultimately resolve a tense situation that every day seems to bring about new twists and turns. After yesterday violent confrontations between Occupy Central members and anti-protesters, questions have emerged as who is organizing them. Reports are also surfacing that Beijing might have been responsible for outing CY Leung’s business deal and is moving with trying to wrap up the protests by next Monday.

Vongfong has been downgraded to a tropical storm and is expected to reach Tokyo today. Thus far is has resulted in the injury of at least 50 and forced the evacuations of 450,000. Flights and trains continue to be disrupted.

In a surprising bit of news from the largely conservative South Korea, Seoul’s mayor, Park Won-soon, says he hops his country will be the first in Asia to recognize same-sex marriages.

Chinese courts have handed down sentences from July events in Elixku and Huangdi. Twelve have received death sentences, while many more were given additional prison terms.

Thank you for joining me today. Follow the Asia News Weekly Twitter and Facebook feeds for more news throughout the day.

The Asia Brief is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Show Notes

Thumbnail: Alcuin Lai