Going into his second month in office, Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has done quite a lot to allay concerns that his weak political position, particularly against a determined and bitter opposition in the House of Representatives, could prevent him from pushing his ambitious reform agenda.
The year's end is not a bad time to reflect where we are likely to proceed in a year of huge uncertainties. At the beginning of the year, the major headline events, such as Ukraine, ISIS, oil crash and Occupy Central were not on most people's radar screen. As the year proceeded, there was realization that we are heading toward a period of slower growth and higher volatility, without much inflation as commodity and oil prices tanked to record levels not seen since the 1990s.
This was an act of abominable cruelty that cannot be forgiven, no matter what the reasons for it were.
The much awaited nuclear waste facility in Gyeongju will begin operations next year following final approval by the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission last week.
Tuesday's earth-shattering killings in Peshawar took place on the 43rd anniversary of the Pakistani surrender in Dhaka. Coincidence it might be, but what a poignant one.
“Is it children we are killing now? My God, what are we? Savages?”
This year began with some Chinese and American foreign-policy analysts looking back a century to World War I and wondering if confrontation was inevitable between a rising power and a dominant one. But now there has been progress on climate, trade and security issues and what seems a modest “reset” of the Sino-American relationship.
Controversy recently erupted over South Korean a bill aimed at guaranteeing undocumented immigrant children the right to receive education and medical treatment.
The growing incidences of violence against journalists involving Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party supporters are extremely worrying. The scenes of young women TV presenters being mobbed and heckled at rallies are the latest example of the party's growing intolerance toward freedom of expression.
Whether the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) will be able to reconstruct itself will most likely hinge on how the race to replace DPJ President Banri Kaieda turns out.