The DailyBrief

Tuesday October 10, 2017

Turkey diplomatic crisis: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s dalliance with Iran and snubbing of Western allies has caused the market to tumble and foretells economic pain, David P Goldman writes. Turkey’s stock market has lost 17% in euro terms since its late-August high point, courtesy of Erdogan overplaying his hand with Western allies. The crisis in US-Turkish relations had been building for weeks but became an open rupture when the US State Department suspended visa approvals for Turkish citizens traveling to the United States after Turkish police arrested a Turkish employee of the American embassy in Ankara for alleged participation in last summer’s coup attempt. The US denounced the arrest and dismissed the charges as “wholly without merit,” suspending visa approvals, and the Turkish government reciprocated with a similar ban. READ THE STORY HERE

Japan election battle: For a skilled politician who ran circles around the opposition for five years, Shinzo Abe’s snap poll is looking more and more like a rookie mistake. Yuriko Koike, leader of the Party of Hope, is expected to have the prime minister and his friends on the defensive on October 22, William Pesek writes. Unlike Abe, Tokyo’s first female governor is a maverick unafraid of shaking up the status quo in patriarchal Japan. She has taken on the powerful nuclear-power and tobacco lobbies and called the prime minister’s economic revival plan a failure. Even if the LDP keeps power, the message will be loud and clear: get busy retooling the deflationary economy or get busy moving out of the premier’s office. READ THE STORY HERE

Philippines jihadi infiltration: In the wake of the siege of Marawi City by Islamist militants, the sleepy township of Sarangani, long known for farming, fishing and peaceful Muslim migration, has emerged as a stepping stone for global jihadists bent on wreaking havoc on the southern island of Mindanao, Bong S Sarmiento writes. Manila and Jakarta are closely cooperating to intensify security measures in Celebes Sea waters to thwart the possible reinforcement of Indonesian militants with the Islamic State-aligned Maute Group fighting the Philippine military in a battle that has raged for over four months and destroyed most of Marawi. Military officials said in June that some 40 foreign Islamic State members, mostly Indonesians, are fighting alongside the Maute Group in Marawi. Other foreign fighters in the Marawi battle have hailed from Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Pakistan. READ THE STORY HERE

Asia digital adaption: The region is set to drive a “Fourth Industrial Revolution,” which will put a premium on innovation and fuse a range of communication technologies, but countries in southern and central Asia will struggle to capitalize despite recent impressive gains, Alan Boyd writes. By 2020, Asian workforces will include more than two billion millennials – the generation born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s – who have never known a time without digital workfaces, online transactions and multi-tasking smartphones. “And with more than half of the world’s millennials residing in Asia, the workplace will need to transform to adapt to the technology habits of these digital natives,” said Byron Rader, Asia general manager for Microsoft’s Applications & Services Group. READ THE STORY HERE

Good Samaritan law: Six years after the famous case of “Little Yue Yue”, a two-year-old girl who was run over and then ignored by 18 passers-by, a new law has been enacted in China to protect people who help the victims of accidents from civil liability, Ben Kwok writes. According to Xinhua, people who voluntarily offer emergency assistance to others who are (or believed to be) injured, ill, in danger, or otherwise incapacitated will not face civil suits if victims come to harm. The issue came to the fore in 2011 after Wang Yue, a two-year-old girl nicknamed “Little Yue Yue”, was hit by two vehicles in Guangdong province. The drama was caught on video, which showed 18 people ignored the girl and were unwilling to help her. Finally, the 19th person who passed by – a 58-year-old scrap collector – offered help to Little Yue Yue. Sadly, the girl died in hospital eight days later from her injuries. READ THE STORY HERE

Asia Times app: Asia Times has launched an app for both iOS- and Android-based devices that delivers the publication’s regular daily news, commentary, blogs and live coverage while also bringing readers added functionality. As we report here, the app, launched on July 25, includes content notification, share and save functions and is free to download from both the Apple Store and Google Play