RFA in the News (May 2020)

2020-06-05
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THE CITIZEN

May 31 “The Knives Are Being Sharpened For China

Radio Free Asia has also reported of high-level security reviews held in the third week of April on the need for greater security monitoring of top leaders.

BURMA NEWS INTERNATIONAL

May 29 “The NLD’s Broken Promises in Arakan

… According to Radio Free Asia (Burmese), there were at least 15 civilians whose families suspect that they died after being tortured by Tatmadaw soldiers in 2019.

TAIWAN NEWS

May 29 “Indonesia rejects Beijing's South China Sea claims

… It urged "full compliance towards international law" and declared Indonesia was not bound by any claims "made in contravention" to global legal agreements, reported Radio Free Asia.

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH

May 29 “Joint Statement on Repatriation of Cambodia Nationals to Cambodia

… In two emotional interviews with Voice of Democracy (VOD) and Radio Free Asia on May 13, Torsry explained the negative impacts that the government’s decision to block her and other Cambodian citizens’ return is having on her life, and the failure of Cambodian embassy officials to assist them.

HEAVY (Also in LATESTLY, INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES, EXPRESS)

May 29 “Kim Jong Un Issues Order Making Teen Sex ‘Treasonous’ & Punishable by Law

… North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un has issued a plan to make sexual relationships between teenagers punishable by law following a rise in “sexual immorality,” according to Radio Free Asia.

38 NORTH

May 28 “The North Korean Economy: The Pandemic and North Korean Food Security

Radio Free Asia reported in January that significant aid shipments were planned from China to North Korea.

EXPRESS

May 28 “South China Sea chaos: China sends warning to rivals by unveiling record-breaking ship

… Known as the 14,000 Kilowatt Large Cruiser Rescue Ship, it is reportedly set to be roughly 450-feet-long, 88 feet wide and 36 feet deep, according to Radio Free Asia.

EXPRESS

May 28 “North Korea chaos: Source within hermit state breaks cover to reveal panic over new plans

… A source told Radio Free Asia’s Korean Service the government enforced quarantine directives but neglected to send out any basic supplies to the populous.

PHNOM PENH POST (Also in KHMER TIMES)

May 27 “Court rules in favour of one RFA journalist

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled in favour of former Radio Free Asia (RFA) reporter Uon Chhin by returning his identification card but rejected the appeal of his colleague Yeang Sothearin whose passport has been withheld by the lower court.

ASIA NEWS

May 27 “Beijing bans Tibetan students and officials from Buddha celebrations

… The Tibetan Autonomous Region has issued an order banning students, civil servants (active and retired), and members of the Chinese Communist Party from participating in religious events in Lhasa during the Buddhist festival of Saga Dawa, Radio Free Asia (RFA) has reported.

COMMITTEE TO PROTECT JOURNALISTS (Also in MACAU BUSINESS, REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS, BUSINESS RECORDER, ASIA NEWS)

May 26 “Two journalists detained on anti-state charges in Vietnam”

On May 23, Hanoi police arrested Thuy, a reporter with the U.S. Congress-funded broadcaster Radio Free Asia, and charged him with “making, storing and disseminating documents and materials for anti-state purposes,” another violation under Article 117, according to RFA.

EXPRESS (Also in MIRROR, INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES, WINGED EXPRESS)

May 26 “Kim Jong-un cruelty: Shocking details emerge of punishment for family who tried to flee

… A source from Ryanggang province managed to convey the news through encrypted channels to the Radio Free Asia Korean service.

TAIWAN NEWS

May 25 “Petition calls for investigation into Twitter censorship after hiring of Li Fei-Fei

… In addition, Li allegedly has ties to a student association that is affiliated with the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP's) United Front, according to Radio Free Asia.

VICE (Also in SPUTNIK, LADBIBLE, DAILY MAIL, NEWS CHAIN)

May 23 “Kim Jong-un Can’t Teleport, North Korean Media Admits

… “In fact, people can’t disappear and reappear by folding space,” the Rodong Sinmun newspaper reported on Wednesday, according to Radio Free Asia.

NEW YORK POST

May 21 “China requests extradition of Uighur man who fled persecution: report

… Enver in 2012 and 2013 passed information about Chinese Communist government abuses to Radio Free Asia and Uighur organizations abroad.

VOICE OF AMERICA (Also in CITY BIZLIST)

May 21 "Amid Troll Farms and Crackdowns, Journalists Honored for Courage"

... Along with Bido, the Washington-based group honored Jessikka Aro, of Finland’s public broadcaster Yle; Solafa Magdy, a multimedia journalist and founder of the Everyday Footage agency in Egypt; and Gulchehra Hoja, a journalist for Radio Free Asia (RFA).

WALL STREET JOURNAL

May 21 "Kim Jong Un Disappeared From View, But North Korea’s Problems Never Left"

... Pyongyang store shelves recently emptied out because of panic buying, not only of fruits and vegetables but also other staples, according to several news outlets that talk with people inside the Kim regime, including NK News and Radio Free Asia.

KOREA HERALD

May 21 "N. Koreans still vulnerable to COVID-19: US State Department"

... The department, contacted by Radio Free Asia on Wednesday about the COVID-19 situation in the North, said the country was still “vulnerable” and asked the radio station to refer to its earlier statement on the matter.

ASEAN TODAY

May 20 "Record-breaking Myanmar drug busts show Asia’s crime syndicates still on the rise"

“Even though the operation in Kutkai township [resulted in] the military seizing over a million [dollars] worth of drugs, business is still booming and prices are still falling,” U Tin Maung Thein, of Shan State anti-drug trafficking group Mana, told Radio Free Asia.

DIPLOMAT

May 20 "North Korea's Foreign Cash Crunch"

... Radio Free Asia reported on May 11 that the state has banned the use of foreign currency for most transactions, to force people to exchange their foreign currency for domestic at state institutions.

AXIOS (Also in NATIONAL REVIEW, NEW YORK POST)

May 20 "Exclusive: Documents show China's secret extradition request for Uighur in Turkey"

... In 2012 and 2013, Enver passed along information about Chinese government abuses to Radio Free Asia and to Uighur organizations abroad, he told Axios in an interview.

INQUISITR

May 19 "Shanghai Police Detain Another Journalist, As China Faces Accusations Of A COVID-19 Cover-Up"

... According to Radio Free Asia, lawyer-turned-journalist Zhang Zhan was taken by authorities from Wuhan’s Caiguang Hotel near Hankou railway station on the night of May 14.

HILL

May 19 "How to confront China's threats once the pandemic passes"

... Radio Free Asia already exists, but the U.S. will benefit significantly by giving it, or a similar enterprise, the funding and strategic direction that made Radio Free Europe and the Voice of America so effective against Soviet tyranny.

38 NORTH

May 19 "North Korea’s government bonds, and other economic coercion"

... Radio Free Asia reported on May 11th that the state has banned the use of foreign currency for most transactions, to force people to exchange their foreign currency for domestic at state institutions.

MYANMAR TIMES

May 18 "Beijing urges citizens to take precautions, asks Myanmar to tackle crimes against Chinese"

... Commenting on the killing in Yangon, Zhejiang chamber’s chair Tu Guoding told Radio Free Asia that there have been frequent attacks against ethnic Chinese individuals in industrial zones led by Chinese investments.

AL JAZEERA

May 18 "Coronavirus: Are China's Uighurs being put at risk?"

Radio Free Asia Uyghur Service Deputy Director Mamatjan Juma featured on Al Jazeera's The Stream.

ASEAN TODAY

May 17 "Work resumes on China-Laos railway: Full steam ahead for Beijing’s Belt and Road?"

... Soon after construction resumed on the railway, 30 Lao workers came forward and said they had not been paid in three to four months, according to Radio Free Asia.

INQUISITR

May 16 "Southeast Asian Drug Markets Are Booming Amidst The Coronavirus Pandemic"

... “It is hard to imagine that organized crime have again managed to expand the drug market, but they have,” said Jeremy Douglas, UNODC representative for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, in a written statement, according to Radio Free Asia.

BITTER WINTER

May 15 "China's Muslims Forced to Eat Pork During Ramadan"

... According to a Radio Free Asia report, local governments in Xinjiang not only force ethnic Muslims to eat during the day throughout Ramadan but also ban them from observing other cultural and religious traditions of eating and sleeping.

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES

May 15 "Who is Panchen Lama? Will China Yield to Force and Release Tibetan 'Boy God' Abducted 25 Years Ago?"

... Radio Free Asia quoted Tenzin Dorjee, chair of the USCIRF, stating that in wake of coronavirus pandemic, concerns about Panchen Lama have increased.

TELEGRAPH INDIA

May 15 "Gift of blood from Myanmar pilot"

... He gets news of home from YouTube links of Voice of America Burmese, Radio Free Asia, Myanmar and BBC Burmese.

EXPRESS

May 15 "Panic as China seals off Wuhan AGAIN - Journalist breaks cover to report terrifying scenes"

... Zhang Zhan, described by the Radio Free Asia website as a "Wuhan-based citizen journalist", said the cases had all been confirmed in the city's Sanmin residential compound, home to 5,000 people.

HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH

May 14 "China: Tibet Anti-Crime Campaign Silences Dissent"

... The United States-based Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported in February 2018 that when Sichuan province launched a “Provincial Leading Group” to manage the anti-gang crime drive, “threatening political security and penetrating into the political field” were among the 10 major types of crime it was targeting.

VOICE OF AMERICA

May 14 "Court Questions Kampong Chhnang Radio Owner Over Ambiguous Charges"

... Radio broadcasters Voice of America and Radio Free Asia were prevented from broadcasting their daily bulletins in August 2017, with the latter closing its in-country operations for security reasons.

KOREA HERALD

May 14 "N. Korea estimated to have spent $620m on nukes in 2019: report"

... Mathew Ha, an analyst at the Foundation for Defense Democracies, told Radio Free Asia that it was difficult to ascertain how much North Korea spent to beef up its nuclear capabilities, given how little information is available.

FORECAST WIRE (Also in NEW YORK POST, SUN, EXPRESS, )

May 13 "Kim Jong-un ‘seals off main metropolis’ sparking rumours North Korea DOES have coronavirus or tyrant is planning main occasion"

... A resident of the province, talking below the duvet of anonymity, instructed US-funded broadcaster Radio Free Asia: “Since early this month, the authorities have blocked the general public from getting into town, making it troublesome for many people."

EXPRESS (Also in LATIN TIMES)

May 13 "Kim Jong-un on brink: North Korean leader faces backlash from citizens over bizarre law"

... According to the Radio Free Asia (RFA) network, the North Korean government is trying to acquire much-needed dollar and yuan.

TAIWAN NEWS

May 13 "China refuses to give up developing country status in WTO"

... She added that such a move would help ease tensions between China and the U.S. as well as protect the WTO's credibility, reported Radio Free Asia.

HILL

May 12 "The information component of Cold War II with China"

... This would be a supplement to, not a substitute for, an expanded and invigorated effort by Radio Free Asia and Voice of America.

TAIWAN NEWS

May 12 "Coronavirus may have been spreading since Wuhan Military Games last October"

... According to a report by Radio Free Asia (RFA), French pentathlon world champion Elodie Clouvel said that when she and her boyfriend Valentin Belaud took part in the 2019 Military World Games in Wuhan in last October, many French athletes, including herself, fell ill.

TAIWAN NEWS

May 12 "Chinese universities cancel entrance exams for foreign students"

Peking University, Renmin University of China, and Shanghai Jiao Tong University have scratched exam requirements for foreigners, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported.

EXPRESS

May 12 "China plot: Experts reveal secret plan to brainwash Westerners - alert issued"

He told Radio Free Asia: "It is not just Tsinghua or Beida; many other schools make exceptions for foreign students, which is in fact a part of China's overseas propaganda policy."

PERSECUTION

May 11 "Christians in Laos Still Subject to Persecution Despite Reported Improvements"

... A Christian villager told Radio Free Asia on 5/7 that in Luang Prabang province in the country’s north, religious rights are still restricted, with officials deriding Christianity as an American import.

ASIA NEWS

May 9 "Former Tibetan Political Prisoner dies from torture in prison"

... According to sources quoted by Radio Free Asia, he suffered brutal prison torture, which caused severe liver and kidney damage.

KBS WORLD RADIO

May 9 "IFRC to Supply 1.5 Million Masks to N. Korea"

Radio Free Asia (RFA) has reported that the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) plans to provide one-point-five million face masks to North Korea.

BITTER WINTER

May 8 "Fighting the Pandemic at the Cost of Human Rights"

... According to a Radio Free Asia report, migrant workers who built Vulcan Mountain and Thunder Mountain Hospitals in Wuhan to house coronavirus patients, found themselves in a pickle after they learned that the government and intermediaries exploited their salaries.

KBS World Radio

May  8 " UN: $150 Mln Needed for Humanitarian Aid, Support for N. Korea's Virus Response"

... According to Radio Free Asia on Friday, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs(OCHA) said in a recent report that nearly 40 million dollars is needed to support the communist country's response to COVID-19.

CHRISTIAN DAILY

May 7 “Blogger and Activist Liu Yanli Jailed for Critical Social Media Posts in China

Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported that a woman in the central province of Hubei was jailed after she posted on social media criticizing the Chinese government Communist Party and its authorities.

RELIGION NEWS

May 6 "After advocating for his release, Uighur woman hears from father via Chinese media"

... After reports about his arrest by Radio Free AsiaVoice of America and Religion News Service, as well as countless social media posts by Imin, her father was the subject of campaigns by Amnesty International and PEN America.

AMERICAN MILITARY NEWS

May 5 "China lobs more new insults at the US over lawsuits - here they are"

... While the People’s Daily editorial called the concept of lawsuits against China “political farce,” China has itself allowed an internal lawsuit against Hubei provincial authorities and the Wuhan municipal government to proceed, Radio Free Asia reported.

MISSIONS BOX

May 5 "North Korea Says ‘Fake News Rampant in South Korea’ After Kim Jong-un Resurfaces"

... Radio Free Asia (RFA) quoted some observers, however, who believed the shots to be a message that North Korea did not intend to change its hostile policies against Seoul.

DAILY MAIL

May 5 "China 'harasses, threatens and silences' Hubei COVID-19 survivors who plan to sue the government over its 'mishandling' of coronavirus outbreak"

... Tan Jun, a Hubei resident, is pictured standing outside a district court in Yichang in this picture circulating online and re-posted by Radio Free Asia.

EXPRESS

May 5 "North Korea insider reveals true message behind Kim's shock appearance"

... According to sources from North Korea who spoke to Radio Free Asia's Korean Service the supreme leader was rushed out into the limelight to show the nation, and the world that he was fit enough to cut the ribbon of the unfinished Sunchon phosphate factory in South Pyongan.

WASHINGTON EXAMINER

May 4 "'Modern-Day Slavery': Chinese Communists Send Uighur"

... That policy would dovetail with the “Pair Up and Become Family” initiative that Chinese Communist officials launched in 2017, according to Radio Free Asia.

NPR

May 4 "Bangladesh Sends 28 Rohingya Refugees To Cyclone-Prone Island Over COVID-19 Fears"

... They were detained after docking Saturday in Teknaf, Bangladesh's southernmost district, and then sent to Bhasan Char island that night, reports BenarNews, an online affiliate of Radio Free Asia.

VOICE OF AMERICA

May 3 "Interview: Cambodian Government Spokesman Phay Siphan on Press Freedom"

... VOA: Recently, Radio Free Asia did two investigations. First, they found that the Energy Ministry’s Secretary of State Ith Prang held vast amounts of property in Florida and Georgia in the U.S.

DIPLOMAT

May 1 "North Korea Gives Rare Response to Panic Buying Rumor"

... Separately, Radio Free Asia reported that the prices of food staples in North Korea were rising sharply because of panic buying, while Washington Post also reported last week that store shelves in Pyongyang were being cleaned out of everything from liquor to laundry detergent, canned fish to cigarettes in recent days.

TIME (Also in WIREDFORBESAL JAZEERA)

May 1 "These Are the 10 'Most Urgent' Cases of Threats to Press Freedom in the Age of Coronavirus"

... Truong Duy Nhat, a blogger with Radio Free Asia’s Vietnamese language service funded by U.S. Congress, disappeared from a Bangkok shopping mall in January 2019 and two days later was in pretrial detention where he remained for 15 months before his sentencing on March 9 to ten years in prison.

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES (Also in DAILY MAIL, DAILYWIRE)

May 1 "Chen Jie-ren: Chinese journalists who criticized the Communist party imprisoned for 15 years"

... "I abused my own influence and the trust of my social media followers," the state media quoted Chen as saying, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported.

ASEAN TODAY

May 1 "UN calls for firms behind Lao dam collapse to pay as 7,000 survivors await compensation"

... Radio Free Asia spoke with survivors at a number of relocation centers in late April, many of whom described uninhabitable conditions.

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