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Myanmar coup crisis risks unleashing refugee boats

Southeast Asia potentially faces heightened regional instability — including fresh waves of refugees, an escalation of narcotics activity and increased piracy around the critical...

Timelapse shows Indonesia's Mount Sinabung erupting

An Indonesian volcano erupted on Tuesday, sending clouds of ash up to 5km (3.1 miles) into the sky.Located in North Sumatra, Mount Sinabung first erupted in 2010 after being inactive for centuries, and has seen an increase in its activity over the last year.There are no reported injuries but locals have been advised to stay 3km (1.9 miles) away from the crater.

Covid-19: Sri Lanka chooses remote island for burials

SharecloseShare pageCopy linkAbout sharingimage copyrightGetty ImagesA remote island has been chosen by Sri Lanka's government for the burial of Covid-19 victims from the minority Muslim and Christian communities.The government previously forced minorities to cremate their dead in line with the practice of the majority Buddhists. It claimed burials would contaminate ground water. But the government backed down last week in the face of vehement criticism from rights groups. Islam prohibits cremation. Iranathivu island in the Gulf of Mannar is the designated site for burials. It lies some 300km (186 miles) away from the capital, Colombo, and was chosen, the government says, because it is thinly populated. Muslims were angered by the ban, introduced last April, and said there was no scientific basis to it. Muslims make up nearly 10% of the population. Human rights groups, including Amnesty, and the United Nations had also raised objections. Government spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said a plot of land had been set aside on the island, according to the Colombo Gazette. The World Health Organization has provided extensive guidance on how the bodies of those who have died from Covid should be handled safely, but points out there is no scientific evidence to suggest cremation should be used to prevent infection. "There is a common assumption that people who died of a communicable disease should be cremated to prevent spread of that disease; however, there is a lack of evidence to support this. Cremation is a matter of cultural choice and available resources."The UNHCR has said the policy on cremations failed to respect the religious feelings of the victims and their family members, especially Muslims, Catholics and some Buddhists.The forcible cremation of a 20-day-old Muslim baby intensified criticism of the policy. Why a government forcibly cremated this Muslim babyimage copyrightGetty ImagesThe decision to lift the burial ban followed a visit by Pakistan's PM Imran Khan. Sources told the BBC that Sri Lanka sought Pakistan's support at a United National Human Rights Council session, which is expected to consider a new resolution on mounting rights concerns in Sri Lanka, including over the treatment of Muslims. Sri Lanka is being called to hold human rights abusers to account and to deliver justice to victims of its 26-year-old civil war. The 1983-2009 conflict killed at least 100,000 people, mostly civilians from the minority Tamil community. Sri Lanka has strongly denied the allegations and has asked member countries not to support the resolution.

Spinnin’ Records co-founder Eelko van Kooten launches DIY distribution and collaboration platform Ledo

Ledo also offers a library of original and rights cleared music, which is free for content creators and brands Source

Vaccination apps may be the key to normality

Vaccination apps on phones may be the key to normality as New South Wales residents are set to use their phones to prove COVID-19...

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