RFA in the News (June 2018)

2018-08-20
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KOREA TIMES

June 30 “N. Koreans exhume US soldiers' remains for possible cash reward

… "It is widely believed by North Koreans that they might get good money for the remains of U.S. soldiers," a source told Radio Free Asia last week.

WASHINGTON POST

June 29 “[EDITORIAL] The U.S. must confront Cambodia’s descent into despotism

… The government then forced the Cambodia Daily newspaper to shut down and ordered local FM stations to stop carrying the fair-minded broadcasters Radio Free Asia and Voice of America.

CHOSUN ILBO

June 29 “Construction Projects Resume on China-N.Korea Border

… Meanwhile, Radio Free Asia reported that train tickets from China's Dandong to Pyongyang are sold out until mid-July, prompting Chinese authorities to deploy reserve trains that have been built in case of war.

PHAYUL

June 28 “Tibetans warned against celebrating Dalai Lama’s birthday in Kham

Radio Free Asia which published a report on June 27 cited an anonymous source saying, “as the Dalai Lama’s birthday [July 6] is just around the corner, the Tibetans in Draggo have been warned against celebrating with religious observances such as prayer gatherings or offerings of incense.”

CHOSUN ILBO

June 28 “The End of Maximum Pressure on N.Korea?

… Radio Free Asia reported that China's border patrols eased recently, resulting in the smuggling of fertilizer and cars into the North.

GUARDIAN

June 27 “Cambodian PM now 'fully fledged military dictator', says report

… Last year Hun Sen dissolved the opposition party, the CNRP, shut down the Cambodia Daily newspaper, Radio Free Asia and dozens of local radio stations

PHNOM PENH POST

June 27 “Rainsy: I will help return stolen money to Cambodian people

… The former leader of the court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), Rainsy said in an interview with Radio Free Asia: “The CNRP and I, Sam Rainsy, will urge the US to return all confiscated money to repay the Cambodian people because that money is the sweat and blood of Khmer people,” he said.

 

GLOBAL VOICES

June 25 “Rising star footballer is among more than a million Uyghurs sent to Chinese ‘re-education’ camps

… According to local sources for Radio Free Asia, Hezim was detained for “visiting foreign countries”, though his trip was mainly for football training and matches.

KOREA JOONGANG

June 25 “U.S. prepares to retrieve remains

Radio Free Asia reported that North Korea has handed over the remains of 629 American soldiers since 1982, and that the United States paid a total of $22 million to Pyongyang for excavation procedures.

KBS

June 23 “Donations for N. Korean Food Aid Up 50% in 2 Months

Radio Free Asia(RFA) reports that following inter-Korean and Washington-Pyongyang summit talks, donations for North Korean food aid to the UN World Food Programme(WFP) have jumped 50 percent.

TIME (also in UCA NEWS, SBS, ASIAN CORRESPONDENT)

June 22 “Press Freedom Is Under Attack Across Southeast Asia. Meet the Journalists Fighting Back

… Meanwhile, the government cut more than 30 radio frequencies to prevent broadcasts from U.S.-backed Radio Free Asia and Voice of America.

BUSINESS INSIDER

June 22 “While Trump's 'zero-tolerance' immigration policy sparks controversy in the US, China is detaining hundreds of thousands of legal citizens for doing nothing wrong

… Conditions in the orphanges are "terrible," a worker in Xinjiang told Radio Free Asia last year.

TAIWAN NEWS

June 22 “Tibetans forced to sing songs praising Communist Party of China

… Chinese authorities in Tibet have launched a new loyalty campaign in the formerly independent Himalayan region, forcing locals to learn songs praising the ruling Chinese Communist Party for its performance at an upcoming national holiday, reported Radio Free Asia (RFA).

DEUTSCHE WELLE

June 21 “Is China building ‘political re-education’ camps for Muslim minorities?

… Additionally, we have statements obtained by Radio Free Asia from local officials, police and witnesses that describe one camp containing up to 6,000 people who live in very cramped quarters.

TELEGRAPH

June 20 “Rohingya refugee camp leader in brutal murder amid power struggle and monsoons

… He was known as an outspoken critic of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), the insurgent group that launched attacks against government security forces last August in Burma’s Rakhine state, killing at least 12 people, reported Radio Free Asia.

 

HONG KONG FREE PRESS

June 20 “Activists march to Beijing office demanding China release cyber-activist Huang Qi

… His mother told US-backed Radio Free Asia in April that Huang had severe kidney failure and lost 10kg in weight since his arrest.

BUISNESS INSIDER

June 19 “Kim Jong Un visits China for the third time, showing ties with Beijing are stronger than ever

… And already the enforcement of sanctions have begun to loosen. Along the Chinese border, Radio Free Asia reports officials are now only checking around half the vehicles that pass through, while a short time ago x-ray scans were being done on every vehicle.

PHNOM PENH POST

June 18 “BGU rejects RFA claims

… On Thursday, Radio Free Asia (RFA) broadcasted claims by Human Rights Watch’s Asia division director, Brad Adams, that the head of the Prime Minister’s Bodyguard Unit (BGU), General Hing Bun Heang, has significant assets in Cambodia and money hidden in Singapore.

CHINA DIGITAL TIMES

June 18 “Exiled Lawyer Warns of “Long Arm” of Chinese Government Influence

… Concerns over China’s growing sharp power have prompted U.S. policy makers to issue a letter this week calling on the Trump administration to take tangible actions to curb China’s efforts to interfere in American politics and society. Radio Free Asia’s Jia Ao and Lin Ping report.

WASHINGTON POST

Editorial: June 15 “Myanmar is now erasing the Rohingya’s very name

… In recent weeks, the Burmese information ministry has detected the word “Rohingya” in television broadcasts by Radio Free Asia, a private, nonprofit news organization, funded by the U.S. government, which brings news to closed societies in Asia, and the BBC.

KHMER TIMES (also in PHNOM PENH POST, ASIAN CORRESPONDENT)

June 15 “US advocates for release of two RFA reporters

… “The espionage charges against the former Radio Free Asia journalists are a politically motivated attempt to undermine media freedom and to dissuade other journalists from doing their jobs,” Mr Josar said.

 

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH

June 14 “Vietnam: Investigate Police Response to Mass Protests

… A protester in Ho Chi Minh City told Radio Free Asia: “We were protesting peacefully and didn’t incite anyone.

DIPLOMAT

June 14 “Carefully, Kazakhstan Confronts China About Kazakhs in Xinjiang Re-Education Camps

Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported that 200,000 ethnic Kazakhs from China have become citizens of Kazakhstan since 1991. Referred to in sum as “Oralman” — from the Kazakh word for “returnee” — in 2015 they made up an estimated 5.5 percent of Kazakhstan’s total population (at the time) of over 17 million.

GLOBAL VOICES

June 14 “Taiwanese and Vietnamese activists are working together to pursue justice for the victims of the Vietnam marine life disaster

… The mission of [Red Flag] , according to a priest named Dang Huu Nam via Radio Free Asia, is “to constrain the Catholics from protesting against Formosa Steel Plant and to get rid of ‘Catholic enemies'”.

ASIA CORRESPONDENT

June 12 “Vietnam passes law requiring Google, Facebook to reveal user data

… “I love my country, and I have no reactionary motivations,” one protester, Bao Vinh said, as quoted by Radio Free Asia. “I only want to voice my concerns and express how upset I am.”

PHNOM PENH POST

June 12 “Former opposition leader tells soldiers, Cambodians to unite to fight CPP

… Speaking during an interview with Radio Free Asia (RFA), the exiled Rainsy, who is now president of the Cambodia National Rescue Movement (CNRM), called on all corners of the Kingdom to fight against Hun Sen’s leadership after the election.

ASSOCIATED PRESS (also in AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS, NATIONAL REVIEW, PEN AMERICA, ASEAN ECONOMIST)

June 12 “US broadcaster loses Myanmar outlet over Rohingya name

… Monday was the last day DVB Media Group’s network would carry Radio Free Asia’s television broadcasts, RFA spokesman Rohit Mahajan said.

 

TAIWAN NEWS (also in EPOCH TIMES, LOADSTAR, SUPCHINA, CHINA WORKER)

June 11 “Truck drivers strike across China, shout ‘overthrow the CPC’

Embedded RFA Video

 

KOREA TIMES

June 10 “Smuggling on N. Korea-China border 'thriving after Kim-Xi meetings'

… "Many smugglers and firms whose job is to earn foreign currency are now focusing on providing products that their Chinese business partners want," a Radio Free Asia source said.

 

NEWSWEEK

June 9 “Facebook Bans Buddhist Monks For Muslim Hate Messages

… According to Radio Free Asia, Myanmar’s National League for Democracy spokesman Myo Nyunt said the party had “nothing to do with it”.

 

DIPLOMAT

June 8 “Swedish Press Jointly Urges China to Free Detained Bookseller Gui Minhai

… In an interview with Radio Free Asia, dissident poet Bei Ling, an old friend of Gui, said the article showed that the Swedish press and public have been more active than the Swedish government in helping Gui.

 

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES

June 7 “China's Ramadan crackdown complete with concentration camps back to haunt Uyghur Muslims

… "Officials at village, township and county level are confiscating all Qurans and the special mats used for namaaz[prayer]," a Kazakh source in Altay prefecture, near the border with Kazakhstan told Radio Free Asia at the time.

HANKYOREH

June 7 “Former IAEA deputy director general says a lot of denuclearization can happen in six months

… In a June 5 interview with Radio Free Asia (RFA), former IAEA deputy director general Olli Heinonen said the shutdown and monitoring of nuclear facilities could be done “within just a few weeks.”

ASIAN CORRESPONDENT

June 6 “How China’s Communist Party maintains control over international students

… ‘Political branches’ or cells are reportedly being used in universities to prevent students from being influenced by ‘bad ideas’ that contradict the party’s ideology and to keep tabs on what they are doing, saying and even thinking, according to Radio Free Asia (RFA).

JAMESTOWN FOUNDATION

June 5 “Rice Bunnies and Iron Rice Bowls: Women’s Rights and National Security in China

… Since January 2018, as part of a movement some experts are calling the largest student demonstration since June 1989, thousands of college students across China have been organizing both online and offline to demand that their universities take action against professors accused of sexually assaulting students (Radio Free Asia, February 9).

CHOSUN ILBO

June 5 “Trump Sparks Fears of Weakening Sanctions Against N.Korea

… North Korea's open-air market prices are stabilizing as daily necessities arrive from China, Radio Free Asia reported on Sunday.

KHMER TIMES

June 5 “Three ministries tasked with monitoring online activity

… Gen Sopheak gave an example by saying that Radio Free Asia reported that Cambodian soldiers stationing at the frontlines lacked drinking water, which affected national defence because they revealed the news to foreigners.

SEA GLOBE

June 4 “‘We’re going to be blind’: how Cambodia defeated its free press

… Human Rights Watch has called for the government to drop what it calls “fabricated espionage charges” against Radio Free Asia journalists Uon Chhin and Yeang Sothearin, who were arrested last November.

GUARDIAN

June 4 “#Tankman2018: hero of Tiananmen protest remembered across globe

… Two men in Hunan province were detained for holding signs that said “6/4 29th anniversary,” according to Radio Free Asia.

SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST (also in AFP, CPJ, INTERPRETER)

June 3 “Cambodia’s Fresh News: is it journalism with Chinese characteristics

… The combative Cambodia Daily closed in September under the weight of a massive tax bill believed to be politically motivated, while the US-backed Radio Free Asia was closed and two of its reporters arrested two months later.

NK NEWS

June 1 “Two Koreas to “immediately” set up joint liaison office in Kaesong: MOU

… Satellite imagery of the area at the time did not show any significant activity at the complex, though reports by Radio Free Asia claimed that the North had been operating clothing factories in the now-abandoned factories.

KHMER TIMES (also in PHNOM PENH POST)

June 1 “RFA reporters’ porn charges may be dropped

… A Phnom Penh Municipal Court investigating judge yesterday informed two former Radio Free Asia reporters that they were not being detained on production of pornography charges, which were laid atop initial espionage charges.

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