First female chief executive chosen in Hong Kong
- Carrie Lam was elected chief executive of Hong Kong by an electoral committee in the semi-autonomous Chinese city, inheriting growing divisions between a youth-led pro-democracy movement and increasing Beijing influence.
- The election was mired in controversy as the committee is stacked with pro-China business and political figures, seen by critics as promoting more Communist Party control over Hong Kong affairs.
- Lam led the failed effort to reform Hong Kong’s electoral process, in which Beijing sought to pre-screen candidates before presenting options for direct popular vote.
“Carrie Lam Wins Vote to Become Hong Kong’s Next Leader” (The New York Times | March 2017)
“Hong Kong’s first female leader a ’tilted bridge’ over troubled water” (Reuters | March 2017)
“Newly elected Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam vows to unite sharply divided city” (South China Morning Post | March 2017)
(Image Credit: Bobby Yip/Reuters)
Death of Vietnamese man in Japanese immigration center renews concerns about immigration protocols
- Van Huan Nguyen died in the East Japan Immigration Center in Ibaraki prefecture northeast of Tokyo.
- Nguyen had originally come to Japan as one of more than 11,000 refugees the country took in in the aftermath of the Vietnam War, though the cause of his detention has not been stated.
- Nguyen’s death is one of more than a dozen in immigration detention facilities since 2006 and comes as Japan’s at times suspicious and unwelcoming treatment of migrants and asylum-seekers—including poor medical care in detention, familial separation, and its provisional release conditions—has faced renewed international scrutiny.
“Vietnamese detainee dies in Japan’s immigration center: sources” (Reuters | March 2017)
“Japan forces a harsh choice on children of migrant families” (Reuters | November 2016)
“Inmates on hunger strike at Japanese immigration detention centre” (Reuters | July 2016)
(Image Credit: Yuyu Shino/Reuters)
Hundreds arrested across Russia after thousands take to streets in protest
- Police reported detaining some 500 protesters in the largest anti-Kremlin demonstrations since 2012, including a Guardian journalist and opposition leader Alexei Navalny.
- Numbering as high as in the tens of thousands, protesters rallied against government corruption and called for the resignation of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.
- Polls indicate Putin, who enjoys high approval ratings in Russia, is unlikely to be unseated as many expect a bid for a fourth term.
“Russian police detain opposition leader, hundreds of protesters” (Reuters | March 2017)
“Russia just had its biggest unsanctioned protests in years and hundreds are now in jail” (The Washington Post | March 2017)
“Hundreds detained as opposition activists hold protests in several Russian cities” (RT | March 2017)
(Image Credit: Maxim Shemetov/RT)