Hot off the press

These are the top stories making the front pages of major newspapers from across Southeast Asia today. 

Get up to speed with what’s happening in the fastest growing region in the world.  

Animal cruelty on the rise in Malaysia

The Veterinary Services Department today revealed that there was a 30 per cent rise in the number of reported animal abuse cases across the country from 510 in 2017 to 662 cases last year.

There was also an increase of 10 percent from 463 cases in 2016, compared with the previous year, and more than 90 per cent of these cases involved dogs followed by cats.

The increase was mainly due to increased public awareness of animal abuse. – New Straits Times

Gun judge faces flak

A report into the self-shooting by Judge Khanakorn Pianchana will be submitted on Monday to the Judicial Commission for consideration, according to Sarawut Benjakul, secretary-general of the Office of the Court of Justice.

Asked if Mr Khanakorn will be investigated for disciplinary offences, Mr Sarawut said the office is gathering information about the incident for the commission to consider. - Bangkok Post

Cambodia, Vietnam ratify border work

Prime Minister Hun Sen and his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc have ratified 84 percent of border demarcation work completed between the two nations.

The Kingdom shares a 1,270-kilometre border with Vietnam and the two nations have been demarcating it since 2006. The agreement with Vietnam comes one month after Mr Hun Sen and Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith ratified 86 percent of the border between their two countries. – Khmer Times

India, Bangladesh call for safe return of Rakhine refugees

The prime ministers of India and Bangladesh have agreed on the need for greater efforts to facilitate the safe return of hundreds of thousands of Muslim refugees from northern Rakhine who have fled violence in Myanmar and taken refuge in Bangladesh, the two leaders said over the weekend.

The statement, issued Saturday during a visit to India by Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, said that she and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi agreed that the measures should include improving security and socio-economic conditions in Rakhine. – Myanmar Times

Asian countries would be very unhappy if they have to choose between US and China: PM Lee

Most countries in Asia would be very unhappy if they have to choose between America and China, and such a choice would be painful, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said in an interview with US broadcaster CNN which aired on Sunday (Oct 6).

He noted that the United States' treaty allies in the region - Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Australia, New Zealand and Thailand - all have China as their biggest trading partner. Asking them to choose would put them in a spot, he added.

"If you ask them to choose and say 'I therefore must cut off my links with my biggest trading partner', I think you will put them in a very difficult position," he said. – Straits Times