But a hoped-for surge in tourist numbers has failed to materialise, blamed in part on tensions between Nepal's giant neighbours India and China. Lumbini saw close to a million visitors in 2022, according to the Lumbini Development Trust - and it was this number the government was betting on when it spent $76m (£61m) to build the Gautam Buddha International Airport, which opened in May last year.
Indonesia is set to launch Southeast Asia’s first high-speed railway, largely funded by China (September 30, 2023, AP)
Indonesia is launching Southeast Asia’s first high-speed railway, a key project under China’s Belt and Road infrastructure initiative that will cut travel time between the capital and another major city from the current three hours to about 40 minutes. […] The Chinese-made bullet train, called “Whoosh,” will connect Jakarta with Bandung, the heavily populated capital of West Java province.
The author of a new book on Cambodia reflects on the long career of the former PM and international attempt to foster democracy in a conflict-torn nation.
The main land crossing on the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan re-opened on Friday after a closure of nine days following shooting between guards on both sides, a senior Pakistani official told Reuters. Thousands of travellers and hundreds of trucks laden with goods were stranded last week by the closure of the Torkham border crossing, at the western end of the fabled Khyber Pass.
Thailand's Pita quits as leader of election-winning party after failed PM bid (September 15, 2023, Reuters)
Thailand's Pita Limjaroenrat resigned on Friday as leader of the progressive Move Forward party, months after delivering a stunning electoral victory on an anti-establishment reform agenda that threatened to upend the political status quo.
The Kim clan has ruled North Korea since the country was established in 1948. Some analysts say Kim Jong Un's young daughter could be next in line, but others remain skeptical.
‘Foreigners on our own land’: ethnic clashes threaten to push India’s Manipur state into civil war (July 9, 2023, The Guardian)
More than 100 people have been killed and tens of thousands displaced in ongoing violence that risks cleaving the state in two.
North Korean satellite wasn’t advanced enough to conduct reconnaissance from space, Seoul says (July 4, 2023, AP News)
The satellite North Korea failed to put into orbit wasn’t advanced enough to conduct military reconnaissance from space as it claimed, South Korea’s military said Wednesday after retrieving and studying the wreckage.
The security situation has improved significantly. This improvement is due to the efforts of various stakeholders who have realized that listening to people’s voices is crucial in addressing the issues faced by the province.
After one month without making a public statement or appearance, Qin Gang was removed from his position as foreign minister on Tuesday. At least for now, he will be replaced by his boss Wang Yi, who leads the CCP’s foreign policy apparatus and previously served as foreign minister.