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From The Asian Reporter, V27, #19 (October 2, 2017), page 2.

Crocodile suspected in death of U.K. reporter in Sri Lanka

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lankan navy divers have found the body of a British journalist who is believed to have been attacked by a crocodile while holidaying with friends on a beach. Police said Paul Stewart McClean, a reporter for the Financial Times, went missing in a lagoon near the city of Panama. They said McClean, 24, was reported missing after he walked some distance from his friends. The Financial Times said on its website that officials told his friends he was believed to have been attacked by a crocodile. The cause of death is yet to be established. Officials in the British Embassy in Colombo have been informed, police said. Panama beach, about 190 miles southeast of the capital, Colombo, is famous for surfing and other beach sports. James Lamont, the managing editor of the Financial Times, described McClean as "a talented, energetic, and dedicated young journalist" who had "a great career ahead of him."

Entire Philippine city’s police sacked over killings, robbery

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A Philippine official has ordered the relief of an entire city police force in metropolitan Manila after some of its members were suspected in the gruesome killings of three teenagers and were caught by closed circuit television robbing a house. The 1,200-strong Caloocan city police force will be relieved in batches and replaced, said metropolitan Manila police chief Oscar Albayalde. The officers will undergo 45 days of retraining, after which those facing no charges can be reassigned to other stations. The Department of Justice has started an investigation based on the murder and torture complaint against four Caloocan policemen allegedly linked to the killing of 17-year-old student Kian delos Santos during an anti-drug raid in August. The parents of two other teenagers have also filed double murder and torture complaints against two Caloocan policemen. CCTV footage purportedly showed 13 policemen robbing a house during an alleged drug raid. President Rodrigo Duterte’s crackdown on drugs, which has left thousands of suspects dead, has come under renewed scrutiny after police gunned down delos Santos. Police described him as a drug dealer who fired at officers during a raid, but his family and witnesses said the student was shot as he pleaded for his life.

Japan deploys missile interceptor near recent flight path

TOKYO (AP) — Japan has moved a mobile missile-defense system on the northern island of Hokkaido to a base near recent North Korean missile flyover routes. Defense minister Itsunori Onodera said a Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) interceptor unit is being deployed at the Hakodate base on southern Hokkaido. The relocation came days after a North Korean missile was test-fired and flew over southern Hokkaido, landing in the Pacific off the island’s east coast. The PAC-3 was brought from another base on Hokkaido. Four others of Japan’s 34 PAC-3 units, largely used to defend the capital region, were also relocated to southwestern Japan after Pyongyang warned of sending missiles toward the U.S. territory of Guam.

Duterte says he became local millionaire with inheritance

DAVAO, The Philippines (AP) — The president of the Philippines says he became a local millionaire at a young age due to inheritance, but reiterated he has no unexplained wealth as alleged by his leading critic. President Rodrigo Duterte gave some details of his personal assets at a dinner with journalists where he repeated a pledge to resign if anybody can prove he has hidden wealth stashed in bank accounts as alleged by an opposition senator. Duterte said, "Long ago, I was just a student, fourth year. I already had about 3 million ($59,000)," explaining the money came from his share of inherited properties after his father died in 1968. Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has accused Duterte of concealing more than 2 billion pesos ($39 million) in undeclared bank accounts when he was a mayor.

China imposes limit on oil supply to North Korea

BEIJING (AP) — China has announced it will limit energy supplies to North Korea and stop buying its textiles under U.N. sanctions imposed over its nuclear and missile development, further reducing support from Pyongyang’s last ally. Exports of refined petroleum to the North will be limited to 2 million barrels per year, effective January 1, the Commerce Ministry said. Sales of liquefied natural gas are banned outright. North Korea depends on China for almost all its oil and gas, but estimates of its consumption are low, leaving it unclear how Beijing’s new limit will affect them. The restrictions announced do not apply to crude oil, which makes up the biggest share of energy exports to the North. China also is banning textile imports from the North, the ministry said. Textiles are believed to be the North’s biggest source of foreign revenue following rounds of U.N. sanctions under which Beijing cut off purchases of coal, iron ore, seafood, and other goods. China accounts for some 90 percent of the North’s trade, making its cooperation critical to efforts to derail Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile development. Chinese leaders were long the North’s diplomatic protectors but have expressed increasing frustration with the government of Kim Jong Un. They support the latest U.N. Security Council sanctions but are reluctant to push Pyongyang too hard for fear Kim’s government might collapse. They also argue against doing anything that might hurt ordinary North Koreans. Chinese officials complain their country bears the cost of enforcing sanctions, which have hurt businesses in its northeast that trade with the North. The U.N. Security Council voted September 11 to limit fuel supplies and ban the North’s textile exports. Petroleum exports for use in the North’s ballistic missile program or other activities banned by U.N. sanctions also are prohibited.

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