Talking points

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 21 July, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 21 July, 2011, 12:00am


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

Appeal court to rule on refugee screening

It has been a long wait, but 17 months after the Court of Appeal considered whether the government should screen potential refugees rather than leaving it to the UN's refugee agency, what could be a landmark judgment is due tomorrow. For years the Law Society, NGOs and the UN agency itself have advocated government-run screening as being more efficient and transparent. The judgment comes a little more than a week after the amended Immigration Bill was unveiled in Legco. This bill details how to process victims of torture, but not asylum seekers in general - although the two categories often overlap.

Lai takes deportation fight to Canadian court

A Canadian court will hear the appeal by China's most wanted fugitive Lai Changxing against his deportation tomorrow, Hong Kong time. If Lai loses, he will be deported as soon as July 25. Earlier this week, a Canadian intelligence officer alleged that Lai had connections to organised crime and loan sharking and was running an illegal gambling operation in British Columbia. Lai spent 12 years fighting his return to China, where he is accused of heading a network that smuggled billions of dollars worth of goods into the country with the protection of corrupt officials.

Foreign ministers discuss South China Sea

Asean foreign ministers are meeting from today until tomorrow on the Indonesian island of Bali, and China's Yang Jiechi is among them. Tension over the South China Sea is expected to top the agenda

Atlantis homeward bound on last shuttle flight

The last space shuttle is headed home. Atlantis left the International Space Station on Tuesday and slipped away after a partial lap around the station. All that remains of NASA's final shuttle voyage is the touchdown, targeted for the pre-dawn hours today in Florida. The return ends the 30-year space shuttle programme that kept US astronauts in and out of orbit longer than with any other rocket ships. With no more shuttle flights, American astronauts will now have to rely on Russian Soyuz rockets for rides to the ISS until a new US spacecraft - a commercial launcher and capsule built by a private corporation in partnership with NASA - is ready to take off some time after 2015.

EU leaders meet again on Greece crisis

European Union government chiefs plan to meet for the second time in a month, with the intention of breaking a deadlock over a new rescue plan for Greece that has spooked investors. Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou (pictured with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton) says Europe's leaders need to show today that they can resolve the European Union debt crisis if they are to avoid contagion enveloping Italy and Spain.

Nokia's second quarter rings in a loss

Nokia is expected to report a second quarter loss as the world's largest phone maker by volume struggles to compete with smartphones like Apple's iPhone, and models powered by Google's Android mobile software platform.