Myanmar declared independence from British colonial rule on January 4, 1948 after a long fight championed by General Aung San. To mark the 70th anniversary, officials attended a flag-saluting ceremony in the capital Naypyidaw.
A report detailing massive human rights violations in Myanmar has pointed to UN negligence as a factor in allowing the Rohingya crisis in Rakhine State to escalate.
The Maldives' presidential election has been dubbed a "referendum on freedom." As China gains more political influence across the archepelago, India wants an electoral setback for "pro-Beijing" President Yameen.
Myanmar's government is facing increasing international pressure for its violent crackdown on the Rohingya people. The International Criminal Court says it has jurisdiction over the crisis, but a conviction is unlikely.
A Pakistani court has ordered the release of ousted premier Nawaz Sharif and his daughter on bail, suspending an accountability court's corruption sentences. This could pose a political challenge to PM Imran Khan.
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