Briefs, March 2, 2013

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 02 March, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 02 March, 2013, 4:30am

Concern after bird flu kills eight in Cambodia

PHNOM PENH - Phnom Penh ordered urgent action to stem the "worrying" number of bird flu deaths in Cambodia after a surge in the number of fatalities. Prime Minister Hun Sen issued a directive for police, agriculture and health departments to join forces to combat the virus, which has killed eight people this year. The latest fatality was a 35-year-old man who died after eating infected duck. AFP

Bid to stop flogging of 15-year-old in Maldives

COLOMBO - Authorities in the Maldives have called on the country's Islamic ministry and judiciary to stop the public flogging of a teenaged girl for having sex outside marriage, a government official said. A

court in Feydhoo sentenced the 15-year-old to 100 lashes after she admitted to having consensual sex, a court official said. Details of the consensual sex emerged when police investigated her complaint against her stepfather and another man of sexually abusing her, the official said. AP

13 endangered rhinos slaughtered in India

GUWAHATI - Thirteen endangered one-horned rhinos have been slaughtered in northeast India in the past two months, officials said, as another death added to worries about a recent surge in killings. The attacks have taken place around the Kaziranga National Park in Assam state, home to more than two-thirds of the world's one-horned rhinos. The main market for rhino horn is China, where it is used for medicine and jewellery. AFP

Motorcycle bomb blast wounds six in Thailand

BANGKOK - A motorcycle bomb wounded six people in southern Thailand, a day after a landmark agreement between the government and a Muslim rebel group to start talks aimed at ending the conflict. No group claimed responsibility for the device, which exploded outside a market in Narathiwat province. The blast was followed by a car bomb explosion in front of a police station in Narathiwat, but no one was injured in the second attack. Reuters