The DailyBrief

Wednesday April 5, 2017

More Pyongyang missiles: North Korea test-fired a ballistic missile on Wednesday from its east coast into the Sea of Japan, according to the US and South Korean military, in yet another snub to the UN Security Council. Asia Times reports that the launch comes ahead of the summit between Presidents Trump and Xi Jinping where pushing the North to drop its arms program will take centre stage.

Asia’s nuclear watershed: North Korea‚Äôs nuclear weapons program is pushing the world toward a strategic watershed much like the one that the west faced 60 years ago, when the US and the Soviet Union faced off against each other in Europe argues Michael Mandelbaum. The US and its allies successfully navigated the challenge of Europe in the 20th century without war but, says Mandelbaum, to achieve comparable success in East Asia today, Trump must persuade Xi to adopt a different policy toward North Korea.

Myanmar China tensions: Some of the heaviest recent fighting in Myanmar has taken place in the ethnic Chinese populated Kokang region, one of the least known and most misunderstood parts of the war-torn country, writes Bertil Lintner. The China-equipped Kokang rebels are supported by the powerful Beijing-backed United Wa State Army and are part of a wider anti-government armed alliance in northern Myanmar that is central to the recent deterioration of once cozy ties between China and Myanmar.

HK Rugby Sevens: This weekend when Hong Kong hosts a leg of the HSBC Sevens World Series, this short and fast form of rugby will return to its spiritual home. Pedro Chan writes that tickets for the much-loved three-day extravaganza have long since sold out and with both Fiji and New Zealand – who have won the past six editions between them – going through generational changes, South Africa, who have never won in Hong Kong, could be the ones to watch.