Under the Radar 2.6.13

Posted on Wednesday, February 6, 2013 by Henna Sharif

A weekly compilation of under-reported events in Asia.

  • Taiwan urged the United States on to honor an agreement to supply submarines to replace its current elderly fleet, as a U.S. congressional group visited the island to evaluate defense needs. President Ma Ying-jeou voiced the desire while meeting the group led by Edward Royce, chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

  • A group of technicians from China’s premier missile manufacturer that was previously sanctioned by the U.S. government for illicit arms transfers are working in Egypt with North Koreans to modernize Cairo’s Scud missile force. According to U.S. intelligence officials cited by a news article, reports of the missile technicians from the Beijing-based China Precision Machinery Import-Export Corp. (CPMIEC) are raising new concerns about U.S. plans to sell arms to the government of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.

  • China appointed a new governor for remote and restive Tibet on Tuesday, naming a hard-line ethnic Tibetan in a signal that the government has no plans to ease up on its tight control on the Himalayan region. Losang Gyaltsen, 55, was elected at the end of the annual meeting of Tibet's largely rubber stamp regional assembly, and replaces previous governor Padma Choling.

  • South Korea succeeded in thrusting a satellite into orbit for the first time on Wednesday, joining an elite club of space technology leaders. The successful launching comes at a delicate time on the Korean Peninsula, as North Korea, stung by new international sanctions over its own rocket launching, has promised a nuclear test.

  • The Japan-Australia Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA) took effect last week. The agreement will promote cooperation between the two strategic partners in security areas and will contribute to the international cooperation of both countries. The pact will enable Japan's Self-Defense Forces and the Australian forces to share food, fuel and other supplies during their missions, such as UN peacekeeping and overseas disaster relief operations.

  • The Central Peace Making Work Committee of the Myanmar (Burma) government is coordinating with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) to resume peace talks. The government holds that genuine peace could only be achieved through dialogue.

  • Pakistan handed management control of the port at Gwadar from Port of Singapore Authority to China Overseas Port Holdings in a move that had been anticipated for some time. “We hope that the Chinese company will invest to make the port operational,” Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira said.
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