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· November, 2020

Stories about East Asia from November, 2020

Exemplary governance: Which countries should high-COVID nations follow?

"What seems clear is that global exemplars do not have to look the same in terms of political structures, incomes, or economic ideology."

Newly-found vintage playing cards shine a light on post-war occupied Japan

The vintage playing cards feature what was arguably the most prominent figure of daily life in early post-war Japan: the American soldier.

Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert freed from Iranian jail in prisoner swap

"It’s far past time for democratic allies — indeed all responsible governments — to work together to end state sponsored hostage taking once and for all, beginning with #Iran"

Hong Kong pro-democracy trio defiant in face of upcoming jail sentence

The trio, all former members of the now-disbanded political party Demosisto, faces a number of different charges.

Rubber ducks in Thai protests inspire solidarity and memes

"The image of Thai authorities, armed to the teeth with riot gear and shields, facing off against…rubber ducks…highlights the sheer asymmetry of the battle between protester and state."

Stop playing politics or face a ban, Nintendo warns Animal Crossing gamers

Nintendo's newest hit is being used as a platform for political expression, and the Japanese video game giant is having none of it.

Voices in a Bangkok rally a day after police used water cannon and tear gas against protesters

"I feel that I have to come out to demand my rights. My friends, my younger siblings, or my children in the future should have a better life than this."

Beijing's misgivings with tech billionaire Jack Ma, as seen by Chinese social media

Many Chinese netizens are wondering how political was the decision to halt Ant Group's IPO, and have dig through the internet to find clues.

After back-to-back typhoons, Filipinos criticize President Duterte's absence from public eye

#NasaanAngPangulo (#WhereIsThePresident) and #OustDuterteNow trended on Twitter as Filipinos criticized the absence of President Rodrigo Duterte amid the successive typhoons that hit the Philippines this month.

How Japan followed the US presidential election

In Japan, Trump is not always regarded with the dismissiveness or loathing that is so common in the United States or even in Canada.

As typhoon causes floods in the Philippines, cellphone ‘load’ becomes disaster relief

Mobile phones are a reliable way for families to exchange information during disasters in the Philippines when power and communication services break down by strong winds and flooding.

Thai LGBTQ+ activists and pro-democracy protesters march together for equality

In Bangkok, LGBTQ activists join ranks with democracy protestors join to demand gender and marriage equality as well as political reforms of the monarchy.

How Hong Kong authorities are gradually taking over public broadcaster RTHK

The city's public broadcaster faces tremendous political pressure from all directions: censorship, internal investigations, warnings from regulators and, recently, a producer was arrested in connection with her reporting.

What election observers are saying about Myanmar’s election

Observers acknowledged the “success” of the election while noting reforms that still need to be enacted to make the voting process more credible and inclusive in the future.

A Hong Kong reporter's account of the crackdown on press freedom under the national security law

"What we are facing now is not just the survival of Apple Daily but the whole independent media sector."

Hong Kong’s opposition resigns en masse following unprecedented Beijing ruling

The new directive allows the Hong Kong government to unseat elected lawmakers deemed unpatriotic.

Malaysian students face sedition probe over Facebook post urging the king not to interfere in politics

"Academic scholarship and promotion of human rights cannot flourish in an atmosphere of censorship and disproportionate restriction of speech and expression."

Some Hongkongers despair as US President Donald Trump's election hopes fade

Pro-Trump Hongkongers accused pro-democracy activists of licking the US Democratic Party's boots, even as they were urged to respect the choice of the American people and stop spreading disinformation.

Myanmar NGO launches tool for voters to compare human rights programs of parties competing in election

"Our aim is to give the electorate complete information about the political parties’ human rights promises – or lack of promises – so that voters can make a fully informed...

Myanmar candidates and parties turn to religious nationalism ahead of elections

Major political parties in Myanmar are resorting to Buddhist populism despite race and religion-based campaigning being prohibited under electoral regulations.

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