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Will Netflix’s Amo be the Philippine Narcos?

Allegations of historical inaccuracy, character stereotypes and the glamorisation of a drug-fuelled past have long plagued the critically-acclaimed Netflix hit series Narcos in Colombia. And in early April, the global streaming giant will release another drug crime drama, this time from the Philippines. Set against the backdrop of President Rodrigo …

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Outlaw or ignore? How Asia is fighting ‘fake news’

Everybody is talking about it: fake news. President Trump decries it every time he sees a critical article, the Pope has condemned it, governments are fretting about its influence, holding parliamentary hearings. And now Malaysia has passed a law criminalising it, with a penalty of up to six years in …

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Philippines to temporarily close popular tourist island Boracay

The Philippine island of Boracay will be closed to tourists for six months following concerns of damage to its once pristine shores. A spokesperson for President Rodrigo Duterte said the closure would begin on 26 April. Earlier this year Mr Duterte said Boracay was turning into a “cesspool” and threatened …

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Japanese women ordered from sumo ring during first aid

Women who rushed to perform first aid on a man who collapsed in a sumo ring in Japan were ordered by a referee to leave the ring, because females are banned from the space. The ring is regarded as sacred and women, traditionally seen as “impure”, are forbidden from entering. …

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Nguyen Van Dai: Vietnam jails activist lawyer and five others

Six prominent Vietnamese activists have received heavy prison sentences on charges of “attempting to overthrow” the country’s communist government. Lawyer Nguyen Van Dai was sentenced to 15 years, while the other defendants were jailed for between seven and 12 years, relatives said on Thursday. Several protesters who marched towards the …

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Studio Ghibli to open ‘Totoro’ theme park in Japan

Japanese animation giant Studio Ghibli has unveiled plans for a theme park to open in 2020. The 200-hectare site will be built in Nagoya city, in Aichi prefecture, said Governor Hideaki Omura on Thursday at a press conference. The park will be based on the popular film My Neighbor Totoro, …

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Studio Ghibli co-founder Isao Takahata dies at 82

Japanese anime director Isao Takahata, co-founder of the famed Studio Ghibli, has died at the age of 82. Mr Takahata was nominated for an Oscar in 2014 for The Tale of the Princess Kaguya but is best known for his film Grave of the Fireflies. He founded Studio Ghibli with …

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Park Geun-hye: South Korea’s first female president

In just four years South Korea’s president Park Geun-went from being a trailblazer to a figure of controversy linked to a deepening corruption scandal. An angered Korean public called for her resignation and she was officially impeached in March 2017. Her unpopularity stands in stark contrast to the start of …

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