SEOUL. — The United States and South Korea kicked off annual military exercises on Monday, prompting warnings of retaliation from the North, as already-heightened tension on the peninsula has been inflamed by the defection of a Pyongyang diplomat.
HASAKA, Syria. — The Kurdish YPG militia launched a major assault on Monday to seize the last government-controlled parts of the northeastern Syrian city of Hasaka after calling on pro-government militias to surrender, Kurdish forces and residents said.
TRIPOLI. — Libyan forces renewed their push to oust Islamic State from its former North African stronghold of Sirte on Sunday, saying they had seized the city’s main mosque and a jail run by the militants’ morality police.
SEOUL. —North Korea’s deputy ambassador in London has defected with his family, according to media reports, which if confirmed would make it one of the most high-profile defections in recent years from the increasingly isolated country.
LOS ANGELES. — Authorities in southern California ordered the evacuation of 82,000 people on Tuesday, after a wildfire broke out in a mountain pass to rapidly engulf 15,000 acres (6,070 hectares) of terrain.
ISTANBUL. — Turkey will release some 38,000 prisoners under a penal reform announced on Wednesday as the arrests of tens of thousands of people suspected of links to last month’s attempted coup burden overstretched jails.
BANGKOK/KHON KAEN, Thailand. — Voters in Thailand headed to the polls on Sunday in a referendum on a new junta-backed constitution that would pave the way for a general election in 2017 but require future elected governments to rule on the military’s terms.
BRUSSELS. — A machete-wielding man yelling “Allahu Akbar!” (God is greatest) injured two female police officers before being fatally shot in the Belgian city of Charleroi on Saturday, in what the prime minister said appeared to be a terrorist act.
ROUEN, France. — A fire swept through a bar in the northern French city of Rouen overnight, killing 13 people and injuring six, after a birthday cake with candles and sparklers fell to the floor and set the carpet ablaze, police said.
SEOUL. — North Korea launched a ballistic missile on Wednesday that landed in or near Japanese-controlled waters for the first time, the latest in a series of launches by the isolated country in defiance of United Nations Security Council resolutions.
Malaya Business Insight's weekday sections treat readers to timely articles on shipping, banking, information and technology, automotive and motoring, real estate and property development, travel and tourism and people and sectoral events. Special issues and supplements are designed to enrich current information and data files of readers with pre-selected topics of national and local significance.