Ban Ki-moon

Talking points

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 11 August, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 15 August, 2012, 11:29pm


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Our editors will be looking ahead today to these developing stories ...

Microlending pioneer attends HK forum

Muhammad Yunus (left), the Bangladeshi banker who won the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize for his microlending schemes for the poor, visits Hong Kong this weekend. Yunus will attend a forum on how to use banking to help alleviate poverty. Since winning the prize with his Grameen Bank, Yunus has attracted some controversy, but his supporters say at least some of his troubles stem from 2007, when Yunus floated the idea of forming a political party, earning the wrath of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Wajed.

Deadline closes for Tung Chung plans

Tomorrow marks the closing date for members of the public to submit their views on a proposed high-rise development in the Tung Chung river valley, which is susceptible to landslides. Green Power has advised the Civil Engineering and Development Department of its 'serious concerns' about the development, which seeks to accommodate 220,000 people, a big addition to Tung Chung's present population of 78,400.

Ban Ki-moon attends oceans conference in S Korea

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon visits his home country, South Korea, for four days, on a trip that includes attending a conference in Yeosu on the use of the world's oceans. The Foreign Ministry in Seoul says the conference will mark the 30th anniversary of the opening for signature of the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Buddhist lesbians tie the knot in Taiwan

Two women tie the knot today in Taiwan's first same-sex Buddhist wedding, as gay and lesbian groups push to make the island the first society in Asia to legalise gay marriage. Fish Huang and her partner, You Ya-ting, both 30, will receive their blessings from Master Shih Chao-hui at a Buddhist monastery in Taoyuan county. The island's cabinet in 2003 drafted a controversial bill to legalise same-sex marriage and allow homosexual couples to adopt children. However, President Ma Ying-jeou has said a public consensus is needed before the government can move ahead with the law.

Perseid meteor shower reaches its climax

Across the northern hemisphere, the Perseid meteor shower peaks tonight, with up to 100 shooting stars visible per hour, according to Nasa. It occurs in August each year when the earth passes through the trail left by the comet Swift-Tuttle, which orbits the sun every 133 years and was probably the one first recorded by Chinese astronomers in 69BC. The particles of ice and dust burn up in the earth's atmosphere to create one of the best meteor showers of the year, radiating from the constellation Perseus, from which the spectacle derives its name.

Puerto Ricans vote on their link to US

Under a proposal made by Puerto Rico Governor Luis Fortuno, the island's voters tomorrow take part in the first part of a two-step plebiscite to determine whether Puerto Ricans want to remain a US territory. If the majority want a change, a ballot on November 6 will ask them to choose from the options US statehood, independence or sovereign free association.