Xinhua Asia-Pacific news summary at 1600 GMT, Oct. 23


CANBERRA -- Leaders of seven of Australia's eight states and territories have agreed in principle to a plan to open their borders by the end of this year.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday chaired a meeting of the National Cabinet at which the local leaders, with the exception of West Australian Premier Mark McGowan, agreed to open up the country by Christmas on Dec. 25. (Australia-Pandemic-Open state borders)

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TOKYO -- Japan and Britain on Friday signed a post-Brexit bilateral free trade agreement (FTA), which is expected to be effective from Jan. 1 next year.

The deal is expected to guarantee that their bilateral trade and investment will continue beyond Britain's departure from the European Union (EU). (Japan-Britain-FTA)

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PHNOM PENH -- Flash floods in Cambodia have left 39 people dead and forced the evacuations of 46,216 others, Seak Vichet, a spokesman for the National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM), said on Friday.

Seasonal rains, exacerbated by tropical storms, have caused floods in 19 of the kingdom's 25 cities and provinces since the beginning of the month, he said, adding that 483,140 people have also been affected. (Cambodia-Flash floods-Toll)

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NEW DELHI -- India's COVID-19 tally reached 7,761,312 as 54,366 more cases were registered during the past 24 hours, according to the latest data released by the federal health ministry on Friday.

The death toll rose to 117,306, with 690 deaths recorded since Thursday morning. Still there are 695,509 active COVID-19 cases in the country, and 6,948,497 people have recovered. (India-COVID-19 tally)

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