Tachilek Golf Course Blasts Kill 1, Injure 5
A series of bomb blasts at a golf course in the Burmese border town of Tachilek on Saturday killed a 10-year-old boy and injured five others, including two Thais. Security has been stepped up in the town following the incident, which occurred during a tournament to mark Burma's Armed Forces Day on March 27. Burmese soldiers searched the Regina Hotel, where the gold course is located, as well as commercial areas, tourist spots, casinos, and vehicles in the town, which is opposite Thailand's Chiang Rai Province. It is still unclear who carried out the attacks.
By-elections Postponed in Burma's North
Election authorities in Burma have postponed voting in three of 48 constituencies in the April 1 by-election because of what the military-backed government says are security concerns. State television broadcast an announcement on Friday by the Election Commission that voting in three constituencies in Kachin State has been postponed as “security conditions are not conducive to conducting a free and fair by-election.” It said voting would be held when security conditions have improved. Government troops and the Kachin Independence Army have been fighting since last June.—AP
Australian Bank Eyes Burma
The chief executive of Australia's fourth largest bank, ANZ, said he hopes to make Burma a key plank in the bank's aggressive expansion into Asia. Mike Smith, who opened ANZ's new office in Hong Kong on Friday, told The Australian newspaper that Burma was attractive for its strategic position between India and China and its rich resources. “We can't do anything until the Australian government lifts its restrictions [on doing business in Burma] but hopefully that will be a positive. I would like to have a presence there too,” he said.
Burma's SEA Games to Have Fewer Events
The 27th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Burma next year is likely to have fewer events than in previous years, according to a report by the Vietnam News Agency. Burma has submitted a proposal to the Olympic Council of Asia to include 28 sports, compared to 40 at the 26th Games in Indonesia in 2013. According to Khin Maung Lwin, joint general secretary of the Myanmar Olympic Committee, they had selected sports that played to their strengths and were in keeping with their culture. As host, Burma has the right to select the number of events.
SKorea Warns it Might Shoot Down NKorean Rocket
Seoul warned on Monday that it might shoot down a North Korean rocket if it passes over South Korean territory, as worries about what Washington calls a long-range missile test overshadowed an international nuclear security summit. Nearly 60 world leaders gathered on Monday in Seoul to talk about ways to keep nuclear material out of the hands of terrorists. But North Korea has dominated attention in Northeast Asia since announcing earlier this month that it would send a satellite into space aboard a long-range rocket.—AP
Another Japan Reactor Shuts Down; Only One Left
Another Japanese nuclear reactor has been taken off line for maintenance, leaving the country with only one of its 54 reactors operational following last year's devastating earthquake and tsunami. The last reactor is expected to be shut down by early May. The No. 6 reactor at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa complex was taken off line early Monday by the Tokyo Electric Power Co. The utility also runs the plant in Fukushima, northeast of Tokyo, that suffered meltdowns, explosions and radiation leaks after the March 11 quake and tsunami.—AP