HONG KONG PROTESTS: FLIGHTS CANCELED, KEY ROADS BLOCKED AS POLICE FIRE TEAR GAS, RUBBER BULLETS TO PROTESTERS

The Hong Kong Police on Monday fired tear gas and rubber bullets during fresh clashes with protestors after a general strike that left hundreds of people stranded at the airport, Reuters reported. Several key roads have been blocked too. The protestors hurled umbrellas and other items at the police in the residential district of Wong Tai Sin. The officers responded with pepper spray and also fired tear gas as tensions rose. Commuters struggled to get to work in the rush hour before Lam spoke. Rail and bus services were also…

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ABORTION RIGHTS: NEW ZEALAND MOVES TO LEGALIZE ABORTION

New Zealand’s government has proposed decriminalizing abortion and allowing women to choose a termination up to 20 weeks into a pregnancy. Jacinda Ardern’s government issued details of a bill which would change abortion laws in force since 1977. As things stand, a woman may only obtain an abortion if two doctors certify continued pregnancy would endanger her mental or physical health. Ms Ardern has said she expects to vote on the bill to be “close”. The legislation will go before parliament for the first time on Thursday. Related: Alabama’s Anti-Abortion…

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SRI LANKA TO OFFER FREE VISAS ON ARRIVAL TO BOOST TOURISM

Sri Lanka will offer free tourism visas on arrival to citizens of almost 50 countries, a government document showed on Tuesday, as it tries to woo back visitors after terror attacks on Easter Sunday. Terrorists on April 21 bombed churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka, killing more than 250 people, including 42 foreign nationals. Several countries then issued travel advisories, undermining the crucial tourism industry. Foreign visitor arrivals in May fell 70.8 percent, the lowest since the end of Sri Lanka’s civil war a decade ago. A government document…

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HONG KONG PROTESTS: ACTIVISTS DISRUPT RUSH HOUR TRAINS

Hundreds of protesters in Hong Kong blocked access to commuter trains on Tuesday, causing widespread disruption during the morning rush hour. Activists prevented trains from leaving across the city. Some blocked doors while others sounded emergency alarms. Crowds of passengers were left stuck on subway platforms and services were badly delayed for much of the morning. Anti-government protests have rocked the city in recent weeks and are causing ongoing disruption. The demonstrations began over a controversial bill that would have enabled extraditions to mainland China, but they have since morphed…

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MUSLIM SRI LANKAN MINISTERS REJOIN GOVERNMENT

Four Sri Lankan Muslim Ministers, who resigned following the Easter Sunday bombings that killed 258 people, have rejoined the government after investigators found no link in their alleged involvement with a local Islamist extremist group. Two senior Muslim leaders Rauff Hakeem — the leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and Rishad Badiyudeen, the leader of the All Ceylon Makkal Congress — were sworn in by President Maithripala Sirisena last night. Along with them, two more Muslims, a State Minister and a Deputy Minister rejoined the government. The Ministers…

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