EVA Air Stripping Incident, Thailand Election Coming, & Hong Kong Update

The South & East Asian News Roundup 24/01/2019

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This weeks news roundup has a different mix of countries compared to our typical lineup of the major players in Asia. In Hong Kong, a move from the government to criminalize “insulting” the Chinese national anthem is underway. Thailand is having their first election since their military coup that took place five years ago. In Taiwan, EVA air is in a bit of a tizzle with an incident involving undressing a passenger on a flight.

Hong Kong To Criminalize “Insulting” National Anthem

A common sight at sporting events in Hong Kong is the booing and expression of disdain when the Chinese National Anthem is being played. Such disrespectful displays will soon be illegal in Hong Kong as lawmakers move forward with discussing the law which will set standards to singing the anthem and will make insulting it in any manner to be punishable up to three years in prison. For those of you who remember, this law has been discussed before in previous news roundups where the internet star got five days detainment for singing the national anthem on a livestream that official deemed “insulting”.

Thailand Holds First Election In Five Years

Thailand will be holding its first elections on March 24th, five years after the military coup that took place. After many postponements and delays, the people have been angered by the constant rule by the military. Back in 2014 the military seized control of the government and imposed many laws that stagnated Thailand’s political landscape. With a ban on political campaigning lifted in December, the nation is on its way to slowly moving back to a more democratic political system. This coming election will decide the next House of Representatives as well as decide the new direction of Thailand for if they’ll remain a dictatorship or move towards a form of democracy.

Taiwan EVA Air Investigates Incident Involving Undressed Passenger

EVA Air flight 15 from Los Angeles heading to Taipei had an incident that is now under investigation involving several female flight attendants and a male passenger. The passenger, a Caucasian man who appears to weigh over 200 kilograms (440 pounds), boarded the Taipei-bound flight in a wheelchair and was seated in the economy cabin. Two and a half hours into the 14-hour journey, he asked to use the business class lavatory, according to the flight attendant, who declined to be named. The airline has not released the name of the passenger. After the flight attendant and two colleagues helped him into the lavatory, the man allegedly demanded she pull down his underwear, insisting that he was unable to do so because of surgery to his right hand. The flight attendant said she eventually agreed, albeit reluctantly, but the man slapped her wrist when she tried to cover his exposed genitals with a blanket.

Claiming he found it difficult to breathe, the man wanted the lavatory door left open — a request that was refused, the flight attendant said. He then allegedly asked the cabin crew to help wipe his backside for him. Upon further investigation, the passenger was found to be a repeat offender and will be considered to be banned from the airline.

You can read more from Amos Joseph on Think Liberty here.

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