- - Thursday, January 13, 2011

MYANMAR

Democracy icon Suu Kyi seeks to revive party

YANGON | Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi is seeking to revive her political party in military-run Myanmar by launching an appeal to the Supreme Court of a ruling that upheld its banning, her lawyers said Thursday.

Mrs. Suu Kyi, who was freed from house arrest in November, has sent her team of lawyers to Naypyitaw to submit the appeal, said one of the lawyers, Nyan Win.

The legal move appears to be largely symbolic, since Myanmar’s courts invariably adhere to the junta’s policies, especially on political matters. Previous appeals by Suu Kyi to the courts, on matters such as her detention, have been shunted aside or dismissed.

Chinese paramilitary policemen stand guard near Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China's capital. (Associated Press)
Chinese paramilitary policemen stand guard near Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China’s capital. ... more >

A similar appeal in November to restore the National League for Democracy was dismissed. The party lost its legal status because it failed to reregister in order to take part in general elections that month, claiming the balloting would be neither free nor fair.

JAPAN

P.M. to change Cabinet, push for reforms

CHIBA | Japan’s prime minister said Thursday he will reshuffle his unpopular Cabinet as he tries to revive the struggling economy and open up the country to stay globally competitive.

Naoto Kan said he will announce his new lineup Friday to push for reforms as Japan faces a string of daunting problems, including a rapidly aging population, growing national debt and an anemic economy — the world’s third-largest.

“I will have the most powerful Cabinet,” Mr. Kan said. “The changes will reflect how best we can push for reforms for Japan and tackle the problems.”

PHILIPPINES

Government, rebels agree to peace talks

MANILA | The Philippines and the country’s main Muslim separatist group agreed on Thursday to resume peace talks next month, the first sign of progress to end a four-decade insurgency since President Benigno Aquino took office last year.

Poor security across the Philippines remains a risk, and Mr. Aquino has said a secure and sustained peace is needed to foster growth and investment.

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