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On Thursday, the State Council, China’s Cabinet, issued a document on its website outlining targets for the year, including plans to expand medical insurance coverage for urban workers and residents to 90 percent, reaching 440 million people.

That would be an increase from the 401 million people working or living in cities who were already covered by state health insurance by the end of 2009, according to state media reports.

In rural areas, more than 90 percent of people are already covered by government health insurance.


Prime minister pushes for Thailand cease-fire

PHNOM PENH | Cambodia said on Thursday it will press Thailand to sign a permanent cease-fire at a regional gathering next week, as both countries remained at odds over how to settle a deadly border dispute.

Prime Minister Hun Sen said Cambodia will urge its neighbor to agree to a peace deal during a meeting of foreign ministers from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Jakarta on Tuesday.

However, Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva rejected the idea of ASEAN involvement in resolving the dispute, which erupted into armed clashes between the countries earlier this month.

From wire dispatches and staff reports