Trump accused of racist slur during debate for calling India and China ‘filthy’

As Donald Trump and Joe Biden came face to face for the last time during the second and final presidential debate, a comment from Mr Trump calling India “filthy” has provoked an angry response from many Indians online.

Mr Trump was being questioned about the global climate crisis by moderator Kristen Welker, when he defended his decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord, which, he said, would have made America a non-competitive nation.

Adding to that, Mr Trump said: “Look at <

Thailand cancels the “Serious Emergency Situation” in Bangkok

Bangkok, 22 October, 2020 – Thailand’s Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha made an announcement on the revocation of the “Serious Emergency Situation” in Bangkok, citing an easing of political tensions and that authorities now have full control of the situation.

The revocation of the emergency decree was published in the Royal Thai Government Gazette, and took effect as from 12.00 Hrs. today, thus ending all orders accompanying last week’s announcement.

Today’s announcement followed the televised speech “Let’s de-escalate and let the democratic system work”, which the Prime Minister addressed the nation via the Television Pool of Thailand yesterday evening. Below is the full speech.

Fellow citizens, brothers, sisters.

I am talking to

More royalists in yellow take to the streets

Royalists rallying in front of the Government Complex on Chaengwattana Road to demonstrate their support for the monarchy.

More royalist groups rallied in support of the monarchy in many provinces across the country on Wednesday.

In Bangkok, hundreds of people wearing yellow shirts assembled in front of the Government Complex on Chaengwattana Road. The rally was held in response to a call by Rienthong Nanna, director of Mongkutwattana Hospital, a self-declared royalist who has been voicing opposition to the demand by anti-government protesters for a sweeping reform of the monarchy.

The demonstrators, many carrying portraits of HM the King and the late King Bhumibol

The future of data centres in the face of climate change

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Trump approves huge Taiwan arms deal in latest blow to China relations

The US State Department has approved the sale of advanced weaponry systems to Taiwan, in a deal worth some $1.8bn that includes sensors, missiles and artillery, the Pentagon said.  

Congress still needs to give final approval to the deal, and can raise objections to any arms sales within 30 days of the issuance of a formal notification.

Among the weapons systems in Wednesday’s deal were 11 t

Thailand welcomes first group of visitors under new Special Tourist Visa (STV) scheme

Bangkok, 22 October, 2020 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) warmly welcomes the introduction of the new Special Tourist Visa (STV) which is now available for long-stay visitors to Thailand of all types – from tourists to business travellers, investors and others.

The first group of Chinese visitors, since the COVID-19 outbreak saw the closure of Thailand’s borders in March, arrived at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport from Shanghai on Tuesday 20 October. Another group is set to arrive in Bangkok from Guangzhou on 26 October, and Thai Airways International plans to fly in another group of Chinese visitors on 28 October.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said, “The STV is offered to non-Thai nationals under the condit

Thai media freedom in spotlight after court reverses protest-related closure ruling

In a rare move, the Criminal Court admitted that its earlier order to close down all online platforms of Voice TV was “incorrect”.

The court on Wednesday overturned its ruling issued a day earlier, blaming a lack of clarity in the petition filed by the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (DES).

In its petition filed on Monday, the DES had asked the court to order the closure of four online media outlets and an anti-government group’s Facebook page on grounds that they were violating the Computer Crime Act and the emergency decree.

The petition cited 12 website addresses (URLs) saying their content threatened national security and caused public fear.

On Tuesday, the court approved the ministry’s request for all of

Drought and hunger drive Nepal farmers to India, defying Covid ban

As an exceptionally wet monsoon season caused floods and landslides across much of Nepal, Buddhi Prasad Chaudhary, a farmer in the west of the country, was harvesting his rice early, after drought left it suitable only for animal feed.

Chaudhary, 27, uses groundwater supplies to grow some of the crops on his half-acre (0.2-hectare) farm in the Narainapur rural municipality of Banke district. But for a thirsty crop like rice, he depends on rain.

“It is almost impossible to grow rice using groundwater irrigation only,” said the farmer, who relies on rice farming to earn an income and feed his extended family of 10.

“This year is the first time I have had to buy rice, as my harvest won’t be sufficient for my family for the whole year,” Chaudhary told the Thoms

Thailand lifts controversial emergency order banning protests after dozens of arrests

A week after it declared emergency, Thailand’s government on Thursday withdrew the order even as protesters continued to come out on the streets demanding the resignation of the military-backed prime minister and former general Prayut Chan-o-cha. 

Despite the emergency ban on gatherings and warnings from the authorities, student-led protesters have continued to rally. Far from backing down, on Wednesday the protesters said they were giving the Thai prime minister three days to resign. 

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AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine trial Brazil volunteer dies, trial to continue

Brazilian health authority Anvisa said on Wednesday that a volunteer in a clinical trial of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University had died but added that the trial would continue.

Oxford confirmed the plan to keep testing, saying in a statement that after careful assessment “there have been no concerns about safety of the clinical trial.”

AstraZeneca declined to comment immediately.

A source familiar with the matter told Reuters the trial would have been suspended if the volunteer who died had received the COVID-19 vaccine, suggesting the person was part of the control group that was given a meningitis jab.

The Federal University of Sao Paulo, which is helping coordinate phase 3 clinical trials in Bra

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