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South Korea has begun shutting down its operations in the Kaesong industrial park jointly run by the rival Koreas. On Wednesday, Seoul announced it would suspend its activity there because of the North's recent rocket launch. It had already restricted some South Korean activity there following Pyongyang's nuclear test last month. It is unclear how long the shutdown will...

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Wildlife authorities in Thailand have said they will press charges against a Buddhist temple where the bodies of 40 dead tiger cubs were found. The discovery came during a week-long effort to relocate 137 tigers from the tourist site in Kanchanaburi province. Police caught one monk trying to flee with skins and fangs, reports said. The "Tiger Temple"...

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Google has updated its map of a disputed shoal in the South China Sea, removing a Chinese name for the reef after complaints from many Filipinos. Google Maps now refers to the reef by its international name, Scarborough Shoal. Previously, the area was also named as part of the Zhongsha Islands. Both China and the Philippines claim the shoal...

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Japan's government has acknowledged that a worker involved in clean-up work at the Fukushima nuclear plant may have developed cancer as a result. Officials say the man will be entitled to compensation for work-related illness, in the first cancer case linked to the Fukushima plant meltdown. The man, in his 40s, is suffering from leukaemia. The nuclear plant was...

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The estimated number of wild tigers worldwide has risen for the first time in a century, conservationists say. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Global Tiger Forum said 3,890 tigers had been counted in the latest global census. In 2010 there were just 3,200 tigers in the wild. In 1900, there were 100,000. While hopeful that the numbers indicate...

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The optimism at the Rise technology conference here in Hong Kong is palpable. Hundreds of booths have been set up by start-ups hailing from all over Asia. And they're all after one thing: piquing an investor's interest to raise funds, so they can turn into the next Asian Facebook or Uber. Asia has become the new playground for investors...

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Voting has closed in Japan's parliamentary election, with exit polls suggesting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will increase his majority. About half the seats in the upper house of parliament were up for grabs. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is hoping for backing for his economic policies. If he can achieve a two-thirds majority in the upper house, to match...

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The head of Indonesia's anti-drugs agency has proposed building a prison island guarded by crocodiles to house death-row drug convicts. Budi Waseso said crocodiles often made better guards than humans - because they could not be bribed. He said he would visit different parts of the Indonesian archipelago in order to find the fiercest reptiles. Indonesia...

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A 7.8 magnitude earthquake has struck off the coast of western Indonesia, the US Geological Survey (USGS) reports. There have been no immediate reports of damage. The USGS said the earthquake struck at 19:49 local time (12:49 GMT). It said the epicentre was 805km (500 miles) south-west of the city of Padang, and 24km deep. Indonesia's National Meteorological Agency...

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China has cautiously welcomed a free trade deal struck between 12 Pacific Rim countries, the biggest in decades. The US-led Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) cuts trade tariffs and sets common standards in member countries including Japan and the US. China said it was "open to any mechanism" that follows World Trade Organization rules. But it did not indicate it would...

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