Hemmed in by the towering piles of books dominating his Kuala Lumpur living room, Malaysia’s eminent poet-activist snorts with derision. “This government isn’t fair, it isn’t just,” said 77-year-old A. Samad Said. “They use racial tension.”
One small family of Burmese refugees living in a dingy tenement on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur has slipped right through the cracks of asylum officialdom, it seems mostly because they wouldn’t abandon their adopted sons in Burma.
On the beautiful, scalloped coast of southern Java, a battle is raging between determined people-smugglers and a poorly-resourced local police force. It seems the people-smugglers are mostly winning and the police are frustrated.
A massive people-smuggling syndicate in Indonesia could soon be cracked wide open, after police seized two satellite phones, a laptop and financial records belonging to a teenage people-smuggler arrested in Jakarta.
Asylum-seekers will continue to flood across the sea on rickety boats unless the Australian government slams the door on them. Afghan asylum-seeker Mohammad Ali told The Australian yesterday that he would happily buy clandestine passages to Australia for himself, his wife and his two young children if he had the money. He said the growing …read more
It was after midnight when the patrolling forest guards first saw them. Five poachers crouching in the jungle, tense and braced for trouble, ready to slaughter a rhino in one of India’s premier national parks. They had crept in from the north as the monsoon flood-waters ebbed, willing to risk death for the precious horn.
It was test of patience and perseverance that would derail most filmmakers. It began late last year when Burma’s xenophobic military authorities deported the Australian filmmakers Hugh Piper and Helen Barrow. They were in Rangoon, working on a documentary about the nation’s first elections in 20 years, tied in with an Australian newspaperman and his …read more
Yingluck Shinawatra is the smiling new face of Thai politics. Friendly, extremely attractive, conciliatory: the one-time business executive might be the circuit-breaker the deeply polarised nation so desperately needs. The youngest sister of former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, 44-year-old Yingluck will almost certainly become Thailand’s first woman prime minister. She seems to have politics in …read more
THE long-anticipated trial of the four most senior living Khmer Rouge leaders begins today, more than 30 years after Cambodia was racked by their ultra-communist rule of mass torture and murder.
THE film is jinxed. Due to screen at the Sydney Film Festival today, Dancing with Dictators has been pulled at the 11th hour after a series of calamities.The problems began when the Australian filmmakers, Hugh Piper and Helen Barrow, were arrested and chucked out of Burma last November. Then the subject of their documentary, journalist …read more