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Opinion: A nightmare with its roots in Hong Kong | Financial Times
April 22, 2022

At one o’clock in the morning in Istanbul, I began to doubt that I would make it back to Hong Kong. I had been travelling for 24 hours and had no ticket home. I was stranded and despair was creeping in. My misadventure was  a case study in how Hong Kong’s single-minded zero-Covid policy is a deterrent to travel punishing enough to cordon off “Asia’s World City”.
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Reading as resistance: the bookshops keeping free speech alive | FT Weekend
December 10, 2020

Bleak House Books, Hong Kong: Albert Wan is not your average bookseller. For starters, Bleak House Books, which he opened in Hong Kong in 2017, boasts its own “Bill of Rights”. “We’re kind of outspoken as a business,” says Wan, a former civil rights and criminal defence attorney who relocated to his parents’ birthplace from Atlanta. 

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Shahidul Alam's Journey from Photographer to Prisoner of Conscience | TIME Person of the Year 2018

December 10, 2018

“The world over, journalism is under threat,” says Shahidul Alam, a photographer and social activist who was detained for 107 days in after supporting protests against the Bangladeshi government. “Whether you’re a teacher, a dancer, a painter, or a journalist, each one of us needs to be constantly fighting.” His mission makes him one of The Guardians, journalists fighting to defend the truth, and TIME's 2018 Person of the Year.

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Hong Kong walks: discovering traditional, trendy Tai Hang | FT Globetrotter

October, 17 2020
Hong Kong is not a city that favours the pedestrian.
Simply crossing the street can involve detours through concrete stairways, elevated sky bridges and subterranean underpasses that, just a year ago, were wallpapered with Post-it notes bearing pro-democracy slogans. Then Covid-19 arrived and everyone went indoors.

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Hong Kong invokes emergency powers: explained |

October 3, 2019

Carrie Lam, Hong Kong’s chief executive, has invoked a colonial-era emergency law to prohibit protesters from wearing face masks in an attempt to quash anti-government demonstrations. But she says the city is not in a "state of emergency". Here's what to expect next:

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Hong Kong extradition bill protests erupt into violence | Financial Times

June 12, 2019

Protesters fought pitched battles with police in central Hong Kong in an eruption of public anger against an extradition bill that critics see as a fundamental threat to the territory’s civic freedoms and rule of law.

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Saudi Runaway's Plight Highlights Thailand's Poor Refugee Record |

January 8, 2019

Unfolding in live time on Twitter, teenage Saudi runaway Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun’s plight has served as a high stakes parable of the world’s opaque and often-dysfunctional refugee system, exposing the geopolitical considerations at play when countries like Thailand are faced with harboring the world’s most helpless.

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'The Fire in Us Is Still Burning.' Hong Kong Occupy Protest Leaders Go on Trial |

November 18, 2018

A law professor, a sociologists, and a retired reverend face up to seven years in prison for spearheading 2014's tumultuous “Occupy Central” demonstrations, in Hong Kong's most concerted effort yet to punish the protest leaders who drew global attention to China’s stifling of democratic norms and political rights.

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Riding the Rails: Phnom Penh's Airport Train Is a Milestone for Cambodia | Time Magazine

June 3, 2018

Roth Puthy didn't have a plane ticket or a suitcase. Nor was she catching a flight. But on a recent Sunday afternoon, she boarded Cambodia’s new airport shuttle train anyway — just for fun. She wasn't the only one.

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‘It’s Dangerous to Write the Truth’: Journalists Fear the End of Press Freedom in Myanmar |

January 18, 2018

The arrest of two Reuters journalists investigating the Rohingya crisis Myanmar has veteran reporters and editors fearing that any journalist could be the next victim of intolerant authorities and colonial-era laws.

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Malaysia's Democratic Hope Has a History of Anti-Semitism | Tablet

May 23, 2018

Mahathir Mohamad’s shocking electoral victory in Malaysia and newfound commitment to reform represents a much-needed windfall in a region where democracy was on the back foot. Few commentators seem willing to sully the moment by confronting one of the more repugnant aspects of Mahathir’s 22-year stint at Malaysia's helm: anti-Semitism.

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Why a Genocide Verdict in Cambodia Could Be the Last of Its Kind | Time Magazine

November 29, 2018

Four decades after Cambodia’s vicious Khmer Rouge regime killed 1.7 million people — a fifth of the country’s population — some justice is finally being served. After 11 years of hearings and over $300 million spent, Cambodia's war crimes tribunal found the regime's two most senior surviving leaders guilty of genocide. But the historic verdict may also be the tribunal's last.

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Hong Kong Is Making It Easier to Jail Dissidents |

February 6, 2018

Rights experts and legal analysts warned that a verdict releasing Umbrella Revolution leaders Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, and Alex Chow could have a “chilling” effect, creating a more lenient threshold for jailing dissidents and endangering political liberties.

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Cambodia's Opposition Swims Against the Tide in Election Panned as a Sham |

July 22, 2018

Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen and his ruling Cambodian People’s Party have left little to chance in the lead-up to a July 29 vote, intimidating dissidents and disarming his challengers. But that hasn't stopped nearly 20 parties from signing up to challenge the strongman's 33-year rule.

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Where are they? Malaysia's disappearing religious activists | Asia Times

May 9, 2017

At least four religious figures have gone missing in recent months, sparking fears that minorities are being targeted and the moderate, Muslim-majority democracy is sliding into Islamization and vigilantism.
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How Myanmar's Failed 1988 Uprising Set the Stage for Democracy |

August 7, 2018

For six months in 1988, protests swelled across Burma, as hundreds of thousands of citizens participated in a nationwide mutiny, led by disaffected students, against the ruthless dictator Ne Win. The stillborn revolution was put down with staggering violence, but its events set the stage for a democratic transition nearly 30 years later, and drew to the fore the country's most prominent figure: Aung San Suu Kyi.

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The Sale of Cambodia's Last Independent Newspaper Pushes Press Freedom Into Peril |

May 10, 2018

The future of The Phnom Penh Post, Cambodia's last independent English newspaper, has been thrown into question after a hostile takeover by a Malaysian public relations official with ties to the country's longtime ruler Hun Sen and the chief minister of Malaysia's Sarawak territory.

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Myanmar's Rohingya crisis is creating a dangerous new political reality | World Politics Review

September 20, 2017

The crowd waiting for Aung San Suu Kyi’s highly anticipated address on the ongoing crisis in Rakhine, in western Myanmar, looked prepared for a pep rally, rather than a requiem on a conflict labeled “textbook ethnic cleansing.”

“We deeply believe in our leader. She will know what to do,” said Win Htu, an attendee who admitted he was able to hear very little of the remarks.

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Cambodia's 'Openly Authoritarian' Crackdown Raises Fears for 2018 Election |

October 29, 2017

Hun Sen, the country’s Prime Minister, “is testing the commitment of the international community and Cambodian public,” says Kem Monovithya, the CNRP’s deputy director-general of public affairs. “How they react in coming weeks is crucial to the fate of Cambodia.”

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How Facebook Users Created a Fake H1N1 Epidemic | Vice Tonic

August 22, 2017

Dr Myint Oo learned about the pandemic allegedly gripping Myanmar the same way most people did: on his Facebook feed. He was surprised: He hadn't heard anything from Myanmar's Ministry of Health and Sport (MoHS) about a new epidemic threat.

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Israel Resists Calls to Suspend Military Sales to Myanmar, an Old Friend in Arms | World Politics Review

October 9, 2017

International condemnation of Myanmar’s military campaign against the Rohingya ethnic minority is unlikely to faze Israel, which has a long history of using weapons sales to ease Yangon’s isolation.

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Asia's next great commercial hub? | Asia Times

May 31, 2017

China envisions a port, pipelines and special economic zone could transform a backwater town in western Myanmar into a modern entrepot rivaling the likes of Hong Kong and Singapore. For local residents, however, the benefits aren't so clear.

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As US vacillates on Myanmar, Suu Kyi looks to China | Asia Times

May 30, 2017

Beijing has regained lost diplomatic and economic ground as American President Donald Trump sends mixed diplomatic messages to Southeast Asia's shaky new democracy.

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Minimum wage war in Myanmar | Asia Times

June 21, 2017

Myanmar's first minimum wage, passed in September 2015, was hailed as a landmark achievement for labor rights and a sign the country was firmly on the path to democracy. Just a year and a half later, the wage is up for review, as spiraling inflation and rising costs of living have pushed low-wage laborers back on to the picket lines to demand a better deal.

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Celebrating art and urban heritage in Yangon | Frontier Myanmar

May 2, 2017

In its second year, a wide-ranging art and heritage festival broke down barriers between artists and city, while organisers hope it encourages residents of Myanmar's biggest city to question the kind of an urban environment they want to live in.

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'Right. This is why people drink beer' | Roads & Kingdoms

May 24, 2017

A brief dispatch from Yangon's first and only craft microbrewery, and the only brewing outfit not run by firms connected to the country's former ruling military junta.

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