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Why China’s elite athletes soar internationally as its schoolkids plod at home

While Beijing spends heavily training elite athletes to win gold medals, its young people remain unable – or reluctant – to exercise owing to a lack of facilities, a shortage of qualified teachers and safety concerns

Woman found dead after Yuen Long flat fire

Third-alarm blaze broke out in Emerald Green residential estate building just after 5.20pm on Sunday

Philippines landslide death toll spikes to 95

MANILA (Bernama): The death toll from the two major landslides that struck the Philippines last week has climbed to 95, authorities have said.

State funeral, national mourning to be held for Vietnam president

Hanoi: Vietnam has announced a state funeral and two days of national mourning for President Tran Dai Quang, who died on Friday aged 61.

Last respects: Buddhist monks praying in front of a portrait of Quang at the Viet Nam Quoc Tu Pagoda in Ho Chi Minh City. — AFP

Presidential race kicks off

Jakarta: Campaigning for Indon­esia’s presidential election in April has kicked off, pitting incumbent Joko Widodo against a former military general in the race to lead the world’s third-biggest democracy.

Powerful statement: Indonesians dressed in superhero costumes marching during a ceremony in Jakarta to the kick off the campaign period for next year’s election. — AP

Passengers sing praises for HK bullet train

HONG KONG: Hong Kong’s controversial bullet train got off to a smooth start, as hundreds of passengers whistled north across the border at speeds of up to 200 kph, deepening integration of the former British colony with mainland China.

A passenger posing for a selfie in front of the train. — Bloomberg

Beijing cancels joint military talks

SHANGHAI: China summoned the US ambassador in Beijing and postponed joint military talks in protest against a US decision to sanction a Chinese military agency and its director for buying Russian fighter jets and a surface-to-air missile system.

Hospital ship docks in Venezuela amid crisis

LA GUAIRA (Venezuela): A Chinese navy hospital ship docked near Venezuela’s capital as the Opec nation’s deepening economic crisis garners the attention of the United States and other world powers.

Colourful welcome: Venezuelan dancers welcoming Chinese hospital ship ‘Peace Ark’ upon its arrival at the port of La Guaira, Venezuela. — AFP

Indonesian teenager survives 49 days adrift in Guam waters with no boat, paddle and supplies

JAKARTA (The Jakarta Post/Asia News Network): Aldi Novel Adilang, 19, had one of the loneliest jobs in the world: He was a lamp keeper for a floating fish trap, 125km out at sea, with weekly brief human contact and a walkie-talkie.

Aldi Novel Aldilang, 19, was rescued by Panama-flagged vessel Arpeggio in Guam waters, on Aug 31, 2018.PHOTO: KJRI OSAKA.

Woman avoids getting taken in by voice-phishing scam thanks to grandmother

SEOUL (The Korea Herald/Asia News Network): An elderly woman helped her granddaughter avoid falling victim to a voice-phishing scam, police said Wednesday.