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Posts Tagged ‘task’

Badminton: Top seeds faces tough task at Asian Games

In Uncategorized on November 2, 2010 at 1:44 pm

S.Korea to set up task force on international marriages

In Uncategorized on July 23, 2010 at 11:18 am

SEOUL, July 23, 2010 (AFP) – South Korea will set up a task force to reform the international matchmaking business following the fatal stabbing of a Vietnamese woman by her mentally ill husband, officials said Friday.


The task force will be manned by officials from the ministries of justice, gender equality, culture and foreign affairs, the prime minister’s office said.


It will discuss measures ranging from changing how international marriage brokerage businesses are run to helping foreign spouses settle in Korea.


Thach Thi Hoang Ngoc, 20, was beaten and stabbed to death by her 47-year-old husband on July 8, eight days after she arrived in the southern port city of Busan.


The man told police he had heard a “ghost’s voice” urging him to kill the bride when they quarrelled. He had been treated 57 times for schizophrenia since July 2005, police said.


Prime Minister Chung Un-Chan called for tighter control over international marriage brokerages and a budget increase for facilities supporting multicultural families.


Ngoc’s family will receive 30 million won (25,020 dollars) in compensation, Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported.


More than a third of South Korean fishermen and farmers who married last year chose immigrant brides, some because they were unable to find local women happy to lead a rural lifestyle.


Official figures show foreigners — mostly from China or Southeast Asia — were brides in 1,987 marriages to farmers and fishermen in 2009, 35 percent of the total.


The figures showed 47 percent of the foreign brides came from Vietnam, 26 percent from China and 10 percent from Cambodia.


Also on Friday, a court in Busan sentenced three brokers to up to one year in prison on charges of illegally arranging marriages between Koreans and Vietnamese women.


Matchmaking agents arrange short overseas trips for Korean bachelors to find candidates.


Activists say some foreign brides, coaxed by false promises or deceptive advertising, end up living with spouses who have few assets or who are ill, alcoholic or just difficult.

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Source: SGGP

For US, a delicate task in Thai upheaval

In Uncategorized on May 21, 2010 at 9:16 am

WASHINGTON, May 20, 2010 (AFP) – The United States faces a delicate task as Thailand teeters on the edge, trying to encourage reconciliation in its longstanding ally without putting at risk its own influence.


Few non-Western countries have relationships with the United States as deeply rooted as Thailand’s. The kingdom then known as Siam famously offered elephants to then-president Abraham Lincoln to fight the Civil War; more recently, Thailand provided critical support for the Vietnam War and sent troops to Iraq.

Thai Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij delivers a speech during an internatilonal conference on the Future of Asia in Tokyo on May 21, 2010. Asian political, diplomatic, business and academic leaders attend the two-day symposium, entitled The Future of Asia. AFP PHOTO

The US alliance was scarcely an issue for the protesters who took over the heart of Bangkok for almost two months, or for the government and army that launched a deadly crackdown this week, leading to a wave of arson and looting.


But with Thailand’s divisions raw, experts said the United States must tread carefully to avoid alienating either the Bangkok elite or so-called “Red Shirt” protesters who feel disenfranchised in the kingdom’s politics.


Joshua Kurlantzick, a Thailand expert at the Council on Foreign Relations, said a policy of interacting only with the elite could give rise to an anti-US firebrand among the Red Shirts akin to Venezuela’s leader Hugo Chavez.


Kurlantzick said the United States has been more even-handed than in 2006, when George W. Bush’s administration was gentle in its criticism of the coup that ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, now an icon for many Red Shirts.


“I think US policy this time around has been more cautious, which is good, given that in the long run we don’t know who is going to be in charge in Thailand,” Kurlantzick said.


Some experts were skeptical that Thaksin — a billionaire, Texas-educated mogul who assisted Bush in his controversial policy of flying terror suspects to interrogation sites — could turn into a Chavez-like militant.


A more realistic concern would be an erosion of US influence in Thailand that allows China to exert a greater role, said Ernie Bower, director of the Southeast Asian Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.


“There are risks for a potential backlash if we picked a side and somehow the other side came into power,” Bower said.


“I don’t know if anyone can call where this will go over the next five to 10 years, and the Chinese don’t have that burden,” he said.


Bower recalled that China enjoyed an image boost in Asia after the 1997 financial crisis that followed the collapse of the Thai baht, as the United States became associated with International Monetary Fund austerity measures.


“The Chinese have the luxury of watching where the chips fall. They could easily be a back-seat driver — if the United States makes a mistake, they can sweep up and say, ‘We didn’t make that mistake,'” he said.


President Barack Obama’s administration — which has made relations with Southeast Asia a priority — has already had to dodge fire as it navigates Thailand’s complicated crisis.


Thailand earlier this month summoned the US ambassador after Kurt Campbell, the assistant secretary of state for East Asia, met Red Shirts on a brief visit to Bangkok — a step the government likely feared would bestow legitimacy on the protest movement.


The United States, however, has been reaching out to all sides. General Anupong Paojinda, head of the army, paid a quiet trip early this year to Washington for wide-ranging talks, diplomats said.


Walter Lohman, director of the Asian Studies Center at the conservative Heritage Foundation, said that Red Shirt protesters were discredited after the images shown around the world of Bangkok’s glitzy downtown ablaze.


“What interest were they serving when they set the stock exchange on fire? What is the message that sends?” Lohman said.


But he said that the United States — and, most important, the Thai government — realized that well-intentioned and reasonable figures were also among the Red Shirt movement.


“The United States can open some lines of communication, but beyond that I don’t think the US has a role to play,” Lohman said. “Essentially, this is something the Thais will have to work out themselves.”

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Source: SGGP

Danish tanker rescued from Somali pirates: task force

In Uncategorized on April 5, 2010 at 11:25 am

MANAMA, April 5, 2010 (AFP) – A Danish tanker escaped a pirate attack in the Gulf of Aden after a French patrolling aircraft forced the Somali attackers to flee, the multi-national anti-piracy force said Monday.


The tanker MV Torm Ragnhild sent a distress call after pirates on two skiffs fired rifles and rocket-propelled grenades at it along an “internationally recommended transit corridor” on Sunday, the Combined Maritime Forces said.


A nearby French aircraft flew to the location where the Danish-flagged ship was trying to evade the attackers by speeding up, zig-zagging and spraying its fire hose, it said in a statement.


“The skiffs broke off their attack after sighting the aircraft,” it said, adding a Japanese aircraft spotted the pirates’ mother ship in the vicinity, identifying it as an Indian-flagged dhow named Safina Al-Gayatri.


The Turkish warship TCG Gelibolu shadowed the Safina as it carried the skiffs to Somalia’s coast, where the pirates abandoned the dhow, said the force, which is based with the US-Navy 5th Fleet in Manama, Bahrain.

A handout photo made available on April 4, 2010 by the EU Navfor Somalia shows the EU Navfor warship HNLMS Tromp (L) as pirate boats on April 2 try to make on approach on it. AFP photo

“Everything went like clockwork. The operation was professionally executed, and another piracy attack was successfully prevented,” said the task force’s commander, Singaporean Rear Admiral Bernard Miranda.


“The Gulf of Aden and the Somali Basin is a huge area… Close coordination and cooperation is extremely critical to optimise the counter-piracy resources in the area,” he said in the statement.


The narrow escape came after a South Korean oil tanker with 24 crew members on board was seized in the Gulf of Aden on Sunday as it headed from Iraq to the United States.


Despite the increased international military presence off Somalia’s coast — Africa’s longest — pirates raked in an estimated 60 million dollars last year.


Alongside the European Union, the United States and other national navies deployed warships off the coastline in December 2008 to protect shipping and secure maritime routes in the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean.

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Source: SGGP

Danish tanker rescued from Somali pirates: task force

In Uncategorized on April 5, 2010 at 11:24 am

MANAMA, April 5, 2010 (AFP) – A Danish tanker escaped a pirate attack in the Gulf of Aden after a French patrolling aircraft forced the Somali attackers to flee, the multi-national anti-piracy force said Monday.


The tanker MV Torm Ragnhild sent a distress call after pirates on two skiffs fired rifles and rocket-propelled grenades at it along an “internationally recommended transit corridor” on Sunday, the Combined Maritime Forces said.


A nearby French aircraft flew to the location where the Danish-flagged ship was trying to evade the attackers by speeding up, zig-zagging and spraying its fire hose, it said in a statement.


“The skiffs broke off their attack after sighting the aircraft,” it said, adding a Japanese aircraft spotted the pirates’ mother ship in the vicinity, identifying it as an Indian-flagged dhow named Safina Al-Gayatri.


The Turkish warship TCG Gelibolu shadowed the Safina as it carried the skiffs to Somalia’s coast, where the pirates abandoned the dhow, said the force, which is based with the US-Navy 5th Fleet in Manama, Bahrain.

A handout photo made available on April 4, 2010 by the EU Navfor Somalia shows the EU Navfor warship HNLMS Tromp (L) as pirate boats on April 2 try to make on approach on it. AFP photo

“Everything went like clockwork. The operation was professionally executed, and another piracy attack was successfully prevented,” said the task force’s commander, Singaporean Rear Admiral Bernard Miranda.


“The Gulf of Aden and the Somali Basin is a huge area… Close coordination and cooperation is extremely critical to optimise the counter-piracy resources in the area,” he said in the statement.


The narrow escape came after a South Korean oil tanker with 24 crew members on board was seized in the Gulf of Aden on Sunday as it headed from Iraq to the United States.


Despite the increased international military presence off Somalia’s coast — Africa’s longest — pirates raked in an estimated 60 million dollars last year.


Alongside the European Union, the United States and other national navies deployed warships off the coastline in December 2008 to protect shipping and secure maritime routes in the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean.

d
Source: SGGP

Government defines inflation control as top major task

In Uncategorized on July 1, 2008 at 4:45 pm

The government at the June regular meeting on July 1 defined the top major task in the remaining months of this year is still how to curb inflation.

Under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, the cabinet members and authorities from two major cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City discussed solutions to stabilise macro economy, ensure social security and sustainable development.

They stressed the need to continue with the tightening monetary policy from the central to grass-root levels, adding that flexibility is also necessary in management in order to rein in inflation, stabilise economy but also accelerate production.

According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), Vietnam obtained a GDP growth rate of 6.5 percent in the first half of 2008 despite difficulties and impacts from the world economy’s downturn.

MPI said Vietnam got a bumper winter-spring rice crop with an output of 18 million tonnes, 1 million tonnes over the same period last year.

The industrial production value increased by 16.5 percent, the agro-forestry-fishery production value, 4.5 percent in the reviewed period.

In addition, the export turnover surged by 30 percent year-on-year to reach 29.7 billion USD, helping narrow trade deficit.

Foreign direct investment increased in both capital attraction and disbursement with 31.6 billion USD registered in the past six months. “Investors are confident in medium and long-term investment in Vietnam ,” asserted the MPI.

The country had another good news as its inflation index signaled a slowdown with the June consumer price index (CPI) rising by 2.14 percent, the lowest rate in the past six months, the MPI reported.

The MPI also pointed to existing difficulties and weaknesses, including the slowdown of economic growth rate of 5.85 percent in the second quarter of 2008. Meanwhile, the country’s trade deficit is staying at a high level, 14.8 billion USD or nearly a half of export turnover.

It also mentioned the monetary market’s fluctuation, the instability of the stock market and the unceasing hike of prices.

The government will continue its discussions on solutions to complete socio-economic tasks for 2008 on July 2.