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.  

More than 1,000 at funeral prayers for Major Zahir

Sadness filled the air when the body of commando officer Mej Mohd Zahir Armaya arrived at the Wardieburn Camp mosque in Jalan Genting Klang, Setapak here for funeral prayers early today.

More than 1,000 people including family members, close friends and members of the press were waiting there to pay their last respects when the body arrived at 1.48 am.

Mej Mohd Zahir, 36, died in a shooting demonstration held in conjunction with the launching of the 5th Infantry Division and 13th Infantry Brigade at the Lok Kawi army camp in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, yesterday morning. – New Straits Times

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam to meet media after killing extradition Bill

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam is expected to address the media on Thursday, a day after she withdrew a controversial extradition Bill that has triggered mass protests and plunged the Chinese territory into its worst political crisis in decades. 

Lam, in a pre-recorded televised message, on Wednesday formally withdrew the Bill, acceding to one of pro-democracy protesters’ five demands, although many demonstrators and lawmakers said the move was too little, too late. – Straits Times

Call them ‘refugees of conflict’, military says

The (Tatmadaw) military objects to the use of the term “war refugees” to refer to people who have had to flee fighting across the country, preferring that they instead be called “refugees of conflict,” a military MP told parliament on Tuesday.

He said the use of “war refugees” is unsupportive of the military’s all-out attempts to achieve nationwide peace.

“At a time when the military is making all-out efforts across the nation to achieve peace, such words are unsupportive,” the military MP told Speaker U Ti Khun Myat during the parliament session. “Thus, I want go on record as saying that they should be referred to as “refugees of conflict.” – Myanmar Times

Govt eyes Khmer power plans

Thailand will on Thursday discuss with Cambodia the issue involving the energy-rich overlapping marine territory claimed by both countries on the sidelines of the ongoing meeting of Asean energy ministers, Energy Minister Sontirat Sontijirawong says.

The Energy Ministry will be in talks with Cambodia over the matter to find ways to cooperate for mutual benefit, Mr Sontirat said. Thailand is hosting the 37th Asean Ministers on Energy Meeting (Amem) and associated meetings in Bangkok. The five-day gathering on the theme "Advancing Energy Transition through Partnership and Innovation'' ends on Friday. – Bangkok Post

Former monk tried over child rape

Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday tried a former monk over the alleged rape of a five-year-old girl in Prek Phnov district in January.

Presiding Judge Ham Mengse identified the accused as Prum Seth, 39, a former Buddhist monk from Chhovaing commune’s Prasat village, located in Kandal province’s Ponhear Leu district.

Judge Mengse said the victim was a five-year-old girl living in Ponhearpon commune’s Thom Tbong village, located in Phnom Penh’s Prek Phnov district. – Khmer Times