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March 01, 2012

ASIA AT 0700 GMT, Thursday, Mar. 1, 2012



NEW THIS DIGEST:

NKOREA–US–NUCLEAR. AP sources: Chief NKorea nuke envoy heading to NY.

CHINA–TIBET LOCKDOWN. Under lockdown: Life inside dissident Tibetan town.

MALDIVES–POLITICS. Maldives president blocked from opening Parliament.

CHINA–HUMAN RIGHTS. China blocks Tibetan writer from receiving award.

PIRACY. Pirates open fire, fail to board Nigerian tanker.

MALAYSIA–GAY RIGHTS. Malaysia court rejects appeal of gay festival ban.

THAILAND–PHUKET MURDER. Thai police arrest Norwegian in girlfriend's death.

NEPAL–BOMBING SUSPECT. Police hunt for suspect in Katmandu bomb attack.

NEW ZEALAND–KIM DOTCOM. Kim Dotcom says he'll beat 'political' piracy case.

TOP STORIES:

NKOREA–US–NUCLEAR

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea's top nuclear negotiator is heading to New York next week on the heels of a breakthrough nuclear agreement with the U.S., two people with knowledge of negotiations between Washington and Pyongyang tell The Associated Press (News - Alert). Developing. By Jean H. Lee.

CHINA–TIBET LOCKDOWN

ABA, China — China's stifling lockdown of this Tibetan town has not only been about patrolling its sleepy streets, but also policing the minds of a community at the center of self–immolation protests against Chinese rule. Moved. By Gillian Wong. AP Photos.

CHINA–XINJIANG VIOLENCE

BEIJING — Officials raise the death toll from a clash this week in China's heavily Muslim far west to 20, with police having shot a higher number of assailants from the Uighur ethnic group than previously reported. Moved. AP Photos.

MALDIVES–POLITICS

MALE, Maldives — Supporters of Maldives' former president have blocked the country's new leader from opening Parliament three weeks after he took office in a contentious power transfer. Developing.

CHINA–HUMAN RIGHTS

BEIJING — An outspoken Tibetan writer says Chinese authorities have prevented her from receiving an award at the Dutch ambassador's residence in Beijing. Moved.

VIETNAM–CHINA–DISPUTES

HANOI, Vietnam — Vietnam has protested China for reportedly assaulting its fishermen in disputed waters in the South China Sea. Moved.

PIRACY

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Pirates have attacked a ship off the coast of Nigeria for the second time in as many days, but the attackers were thwarted in the latest incident by a quick–acting crew, an international maritime watchdog says. Moved.

MALAYSIA–GAY RIGHTS

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Malaysia's High Court dismisses a bid by activists to challenge a police ban on a gay arts festival, in a rare legal case involving gay rights in the Muslim–majority nation. Moved.

THAILAND–PHUKET MURDER

BANGKOK — Police in Thailand say they have arrested a Norwegian businessman who admitted killing his Thai girlfriend and keeping her rotting body hidden in his luxurious villa for two and a half years. Moved.

NEPAL–BOMBING SUSPECT

KATMANDU, Nepal — Police say they are hunting for a suspect in a bomb attack at the headquarters of Nepal's monopoly oil importer that killed three people. Moved.

SOTHEBY'S–CAMBODIAN STATUE

NEW YORK — Sotheby's is working to help return an ancient statue to Cambodia after the government claimed it had been illegally removed from the country decades ago. Moved. By Ula Ilnytzky.

BUSINESS AND FINANCE:

HONG KONG–WHITE CUBE

HONG KONG — Britain's White Cube gallery, known as an early champion of provocative British artists Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin, launches its Hong Kong branch, becoming the latest Western gallery to open an Asian outpost in pursuit of China's booming art market. Moved. By Kelvin Chan. AP Photos.

CHINA–MANUFACTURING

SHANGHAI — China's manufacturing gained momentum in February, helped by strength in new orders, export demand and production, a government survey showed, though inflation pressures remain a concern. Noved. By Elaine Kurtenbach.

WORLD MARKETS

BANGKOK — Asian stock markets edge lower as buying fervor cooled following a string of strong gains. Benchmark oil slipped to nearly $107 per barrel while the dollar fell against the yen but remained steady against the euro. Moved. By Pamela Sampson.

WITH: OIL PRICES

NEW ZEALAND–KIM DOTCOM

WELLINGTON, New Zealand — In his first interviews since his January arrest in New Zealand, Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom says he will prevail in what he calls a "political" Internet piracy case against him. Moved. AP Photos.

FOR NEWS ON (News - Alert) CURRENT AND UPCOMING FEATURES, please see the AP World Features Digest.



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