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Covering The Multicultural Asian American Community in Georgia February 1-15, 2018

PyeongChang 2018

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February 1-15, 2018 Georgia Asian Times

Georgia Asian Times February 1-15, 2018

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You didn’t work this hard to worry about the unexpected. Publisher: Li Wong Account Manager: Adrian West Contributors: Andrian Putra, May Lee, Mark Ho Photographer: Ben Hioe Tel: 678-971-9388 Advertising: gat@gasiantimes. com Editorial: URL: Mailing Address: P.O. Box 4502 Suwanee GA 30024

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GAT Calendar of Events GAT welcome submission of announcement pertaining to community related events. Please email event, date, venue, and time to GAT does not guarantee insertion of event announcement and has the right to deny any posting.

NACA Chinese New Year Fundraising Gala Date: Saturday, February 10, 2018 Time: 6:00 pm Venue: Canton House, Buford Highway For more info: 2018 Atlanta Chinese New Year Festival Authentic food festival, arts & culture exhibitions. Presented by Atlanta Chinatown Mall Date: February 17-18, 2018 Time: 11:00 am - 4:00 pm Venue: Atlanta Chinatown Mall, 5383 New Peachtree Road, Chamblee, GA For more info: 770-458-6660; www. facebook/ATLChinatown Admission: Free 2018 Atlanta Chinese Lunar New Year Festival Date: Sat-Sun Feb 17-18, 2018 Time: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm Venue: Culture Center of Taipei Economic and Culture Office in Atlanta 5377 New Peachtree Road, Chamblee Ticket: $5 per person; Free admission for children under 3 Feet 6 inches. For more info:

Chinese Opera Spring Festival Presented by Jiangsu Atlanta Chinese Association Date: Sunday, February 18, 2018 Time: 3:00 pm -5:00 pm Venue: Infinite Energy Center, 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth GA 30097 Atlanta Tet Festival 2018 - Vietnamese Lunar New Year Celebration Presented by United Vietnamese American Georgia Date: Sunday, February 18, 2018 Time: 10:00 am - 7:00 pm Venue: 6100 Live Oak Pkwy, Norcross, Hong Kong’s Chinese New Year Spring Reception Presented by Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office New York Date: Wed, Feb 21, 2018 Time: 6:00 pm Venue: Georgia Aquarium Strictly by invitation only. New American Hero Awards Gala Date: February 23, 2018 Time: 6:00 pm Venue: Le Meridien Hotel, 4400 Ashford Dunwoody Road, Atlanta, GA

Contact: Jennifer Rose and Rose Pak ATLANTA • 770.457.8118

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NACA awarded cash donations to GSU, Asian businesswoman faces charges of GA Tech-Shenzhen and Good Shepherd embezzlement of Chinese investors in Services U.S. Northern District Court Chamblee, February 10, 2018 -- The National Association of Chinese Americans hosted its annual fundraising dinner to welcome the Lunar New Year of the Dog. Over 300 guests including elected officials, business and community leaders attended the annual event. Among the guest of honors included Congressman Hank Johnson, U.S. Representative, GA 4th District and Dr. Wang Yu, Deputy Consul General of Consulate General of Peoples Republic of China in Houston. Dr. Wang Yu also delivers the keynote speech for the evening. Also present are Georgia’s House Minority Leader Stacey Abrahams, Doraville Mayor Donna Pittman, Stone Mountain Mayor Patricia Wheeler, Atlanta Regional Commission Executive Director Doug Hooker, Fulton County Attorney Patrise Perkins-Hooker, and Georgia Court of Appeals Judge Carla Wong McMillian.

NACA presented donations of $10,000 to the Georgia State University Perimeter College, $10,000 donation to Georgia tech’s Shenzhen campus in China, and $5000 donation to Good Shepherd Services of Atlanta. NACA’s President was awarded the Dedicated Service Awards from the NAVA Board for his years of dedicated service to local community and NACA.

Atlanta, February 1, 2018 -- A prominent metro Atlanta realtor and businesswoman, Emily Moerdomo Fu faces criminal charges at U.S. Northern District Court for racketeering and misappropriation use of assets in a Federal Court filing. Fu was accused by investigators for operating an “investment fraud scheme” and embezzlement of funds.

NACA also announced a new program, “Leadership Development Program” for development of young Asian American. The new program aims to cultivate young legal talents and future leaders of the Asian legal community. NACA also connect law students and young lawyers with experienced practicing attorneys, who will share their career advice, practice experience, and provide leadership guidance to the mentees.

The filing against defendant Emily Fu, Capital Investment International, Inc., Jacob Fu, Joshua Fu and Nina Xu of Touchmark National Bank was made by plaintiffs: Intelligent Investment International LLC, Brannon Crossing Partners LLC, Walks at Johns Creek Partners LLC, Windward Market Forest LLC, Palisades West Paces Partners LLC, GII Spalding Plaza LLC, Cooper Village Partners LLC, Peachtree Med Building Partners LLC and Eastside Med Partners LLC.

For more information on NACA, visit

Emily Fu was formerly a successful real estate agent with Re/max Great-

er Atlanta for over 25 years. She also received the “Individual of the Year - Governor’s International Award” in 2012. Based on the charges, Emily Fu and her associates conspired to embezzle Chinese investors through improper use of company funds, unauthorized loans, “Ghost” properties, and purchase price discrepancies. Among the commercial properties that Intelligent Investment International LLC mentioned in the lawsuit are The Shoppes at Brannon, Spalding Plaza, Sugarloaf Center, North Atlanta Primary Care, Eastside Building, Market Forest Shops, Cooper Retail Center, and Peachtree Corners. The original filing was submitted on Dec 20, 2017 and was rescheduled to Dec 30, 2017.

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METRO ASIAN NEWS OFS to create 200 jobs, invest $138.9 million in Gwinnett and Carroll Counties

Major redevelopment of Infinite Energy Center to be reveal by North American Properties Duluth, February 13, 2018 -- The properties around Gwinnett’s Infinite Energy Center is expected to undergo major redevelopment and expected to break ground by Spring 2019. The 118-acre redevelopment is called Revel and to be led by North American Properties, which had a successful track record in development of Avalon project in Alpharetta and redevelopment of Colony Square in midtown. Revel encompasses 330,000 sf of retail, restaurants and entertainment along with 600,000 sf of Class A office space, a 300-rooms hotel, and a 700-residential units, according to “At Revel, great food and great entertainment will intersect to create street-level energy and vibrant experiences that amplify life in Gwinnett,” said North American Properties Senior Vice President of Retail Leasing David Weinert in a released statement. “We envision a compelling critical mass of unique to market retailers delivering a synergistic merchandising mix seamlessly integrated with the tremendous experiential destination that already exists.”

North American Properties visited Universal CityWalk Hollywood in California, Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale, Ariz., Americana at Brand in Glendale, Calif., and various mixed use developments and entertainment districts around the country in the process of planning for Revel, according to the released statement.

Gwinnett, February 7, 2018 – Partnership Gwinnett in conjunction with The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) today announced that OFS Fitel, LLC (OFS), manufacturer of optical fiber products, will create 200 jobs and invest $138.9 million in the expansion at both their Norcross and Carrollton facilities. “It is always a win when an existing industry commits to an expansion, but what makes this announcement even more impactful that is that OFS is creating job opportunities at two facilities in the state,” said GDEcD Commissioner Pat Wilson. “Congratulations to both Gwinnett and Carroll County. OFS has been an incredible corporate citizen and I am excited for their continued commitment to Georgia.”

“North American Properties was chosen not only for its ability to create, develop and market a successful mixed-use development, but most importantly, to build a destination that will engage and entice both our residents and our visitors, creating a ‘downtown’ for Gwinnett, and further activating the Infinite Energy Center convention district as a live, work, play community,” said Preston Williams in a statement. Partnership Gwinnett will host a breakfast at Infinite Energy Center on Tuesday, February 27, 2018 where senior executives from Revel will reveal the project in greater details. Tickets are $45.00 per person, $35.00 for PG investors, $40.00 for Gwinnett Chambers members and available online at

OFS is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Japanese parent company, Furukawa Electric Co., Ltd. In 2017 Furukawa Electric announced plans to nearly double its 2016 optical fiber manufacturing capacity by 2019 and to increase its optical fiber cable manufacturing capacity. Japan is a leading investor nation in Georgia, ranking first among Georgia’s international investors based on total dollar value of investments,

and third based on total number of facilities. “The proliferation of hyper-scale and edge data centers, 5G wireless, and fiber-to-the-home (FTTH), along with the greater digitization of communications in business, are creating the need for fiber in Georgia and around the world,” said Timothy F. Murray, head of the Global Optical Fiber and Cable business of Furukawa Electric and CEO of OFS. “Furukawa Electric is responding with greater capacity, which you can see with the expansions and employment growth in Norcross and Carrollton. We foresee this demand continuing into the next decade with communication traffic estimated to increase during this period.” “OFS’ expansion in Gwinnett is a direct reflection of our superior workforce and business friendly climate,” said Gwinnett County Commission Chair Charlotte Nash. “We are proud that global leaders, like OFS, continue to invest in Gwinnett and we look forward to the company’s continued success.” GDEcD director of Existing Industry & Regional Recruitment Lindsay Martin represented the Global Commerce division in collaboration with Partnership Gwinnett and the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce, Georgia Power and Carroll EMC. “The expansion of OFS is great news for the district and an indicator of what’s to come in this area,” said Gateway85 CID Executive Director Marsha Anderson Bomar. “The increase in jobs and investment in the CID is an asset to our growing economic base and we’re excited for the company’s future growth in our community.”

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Alibaba to take US$486 million stake in China names JPMorgan Chase as yuan China retail data firm clearing bank in U.S Shanghai, February 8, 2018 - China’s biggest e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd will invest US$486 million for a stake in a domestic bigdata firm focused on hotels and retail, as part of a push to deepen its offline presence. The firm will buy a 38% stake in Shiji Retail Information Technology Co via its subsidiary Alibaba Investment Ltd, the data firm’s listed parent said in a filing to the Shenzhen stock exchange on Thursday. The deal is part of a “new retail” strategic cooperation, Beijing Shiji Information Technology Co Ltd said, referring to a shift by Alibaba and rivals to leverage big-data to shake up China’s huge but stalling retail market. Alibaba has been beefing up its retail presence with more than US$10 billion of investments into brick-and-mortar outlets amid rising competition in the space from rival Tencent Holdings Ltd. Alibaba did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the announcement by Beijing Shiji Information.

Beijing Shiji Information says it provides software and data systems to hotel firms such as InterContinental Hotels Group , retailers such as Starbucks Corp, and entertainment companies.

Beijing, February 13, 2018 - China’s central bank on Tuesday named JPMorgan Chase & Co. as yuan clearing bank in the United States, as Chinese authorities seek to boost global use of the yuan.

The latest deal comes after another Alibaba subsidiary, Taobao (China) Software Co Ltd, agreed to take a roughly 15% stake in Beijing Shiji Information in 2014 for 2.81 billion yuan to help bolster its online travel business.

The pick of the largest U.S. bank by assets was made according to an agreement with the U.S. Federal Reserve, the People’s Bank of China said in a short statement on its website. Senior Chinese and U.S. officials agreed to facilitate yuan trading and clearing in the U.S. during a bilateral Strategic and Economic Dialogue in 2016. China and the U.S. would each pick a yuan-clearing bank in the United States, Chinese officials have said. In September 2016, the central bank named Bank of China’s New York branch to be a yuan clearing bank in the United States. There are some signs of a revival in the international use of the yuan after several years in the doldrums, as the yuan CNY=CFXS rebounds.

China’s non-financial outbound direct investment rose nearly 40 percent in January from a year earlier, data showed on Tuesday, in the latest sign that Beijing may be slowly relaxing tough foreign exchange controls as the government grows less worried about capital flight. - Reuters

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Walmart goes to the cloud to close gap with Amazon

Walmart’s online revenue climbed 50 percent year-over-year during the third quarter, helping it post its strongest-ever quarterly growth since 2009.

San Bruno/Sunnyvale, February 14, 2018 - One of Walmart Inc’s best chances at taking on Inc in e-commerce lies with six giant server farms, each larger than ten football fields.

“The battle between Walmart and Amazon has been playing out on all fronts and the cloud is the latest frontier,” said Kerry Liu, chief executive of Rubikloud Technologies, which offers artificial intelligence technology services to retailers.

These facilities, which cost Walmart millions of dollars and took nearly five years to build, are starting to pay off. The retailer’s online sales have been on a tear for the last three consecutive quarters, far outpacing wider industry growth levels. Powering that rise are thousands of proprietary servers that enable the company to crunch almost limitless swathes of customer data in-house. Most retailers rent the computing capacity they need to store and manage such information. But Walmart’s decision to build its own internal cloud network shows its determination to grab a bigger slice of online shopping, in part by imitating Amazon’s use of cloud-powered big data to drive digital sales. The effort is helping Walmart to stay competitive with Amazon on pricing and to tightly control key functions such as inventory. And it is allowing the company to target shoppers with more customized offers and improved services, two top executives told Reuters in interviews at Walmart’s San Bruno and Sunnyvale campuses in California. “It has made a big difference to how fast we can grow our e-commerce business,”

said Tim Kimmet, head of cloud operations for Walmart. He said Walmart, for example, is using cloud data to stock items frequently ordered by customers via voice shopping devices such as Google Home. The network is helping the retailer improve its in-store operations as well. Using data gleaned from millions of transactions, the company sped up the process by which customers can return online purchases to their local stores by 60 percent. And Walmart can adjust prices at its physical locations almost instantly across entire regions. “We are now able to execute change faster,” Jeremy King, Walmart’s chief technology officer, told Reuters. He added that Walmart can now make over 170,000 monthly changes to software that supports its website, compared to less than 100 changes previously. To be sure, Walmart, the world’s largest brick-and-mortar retailer, holds just a 3.6 percent share of the U.S. e-commerce market compared to Amazon’s 43.5 percent, according to digital research firm eMarketer. Still, Walmart’s cloud effort is significant at a time when U.S. retail is undergoing immense disruption, and data-based decision making has become more important than ever to understand how shoppers make purchases.

EXCESS CAPACITY The cloud initiative is but one of several steps Wal-Mart is taking to boost its e-commerce business. The company has expanded its online selection and acquired smaller e-commerce retailers. Walmart is offering free two-day shipping on orders of $35 or more, and it recently asked vendors to supply it with merchandise priced at $10 and up to help it turn a profit online. Walmart has stored information in smaller internal data centers for years. And it uses public cloud storage for non-critical data. Most retailers rent server capacity offered by companies such as Amazon Web Services, Alphabet Inc’s Google, Microsoft Corp and IBM. But Walmart’s decision to build a network that is not reliant on a single third-party cloud technology provider has transformed its ability to understand shoppers, who now move between store, desktop, mobile and app to make purchases. About 80 percent of Walmart’s cloud network is now in-house. Walmart’s Kimmet said security was another big factor behind the effort, enabling

the retailer to better protect customer data. That secrecy extends to the locations of its six “mega clouds” or giant server farms, and 75 “micro clouds” whose locations the company declined to disclose publicly. Walmart shareholders so far appear supportive of its cloud strategy. The company’s shares have risen 49 percent in the last 12 months, defying the broader retail sector downturn and outperforming the wider S&P 500 index, which has risen 14 percent over the same period. Still, some investors have expressed concerns that Walmart’s approach will make it harder for the retailer to downsize if market conditions change significantly. A few of them told Reuters they would like to see Walmart commercialize its excess capacity, much as its rival Amazon has done. Amazon Web Services (AWS) generated $18.34 billion in revenue in 2017 and has garnered 26 percent of the cloud market, according to estimates from Jefferies Group LLC. “Walmart is very good at following Amazon’s innovations. Now they must find a way to monetize the cloud business they are building the way AWS did,” said Charles Sizemore, founder of Sizemore Capital Management LLC, who owns shares of Walmart. Walmart’s Kimmet said the retailer has no immediate plans to provide cloud services for other companies. But he did not rule it out as a future revenue driver. Reuters

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South Korean director rejects #MeToo charges at Berlin fest Berlin, Feb 18 — Acclaimed filmmaker Kim Ki-duk has rejected abuse accusations against him at the Berlin film festival yesterday. A South Korean director in the eye of a #MeToo storm defiantly rejected abuse accusations against him at the Berlin film festival yesterday, saying he ensures no one “suffers” on the sets of his ultraviolent, sexually explicit art movies. Acclaimed filmmaker Kim Kiduk, who has picked up prizes at the Cannes, Venice and Berlinale festivals, faced a barrage of reporter questions about allegations of physical and sexual abuse by an actress he worked with in 2013. His invitation to the Berlinale prompted the actress to accuse festival organisers of “hypocrisy” given the spotlight the 11-day event has said it wants to train on rampant sexual misconduct in the industry. Kim, 57, insisted that “safety and respect” take top priority in all of his productions.

“We don’t want anyone hurt while making a film. We don’t want anyone to suffer when making a film,” he told a news conference, speaking through an interpreter. “No matter how fantastic a film is, we must make sure that nobody feels insulted during shooting and that applies for everybody, both cast and crew. That’s been my fundamental approach therefore I very much regret this incident.” Asked whether he wished to apologise for his treatment of the actress, who has declined to be publicly named, Kim insisted he was unaware of any wrongdoing on his part. “What we were actually doing was rehearsing a scene. We were on the set, there were a lot of people present. My crew back then did not object at all or say that it was inappropriate,” he said. “I don’t remember exactly what happened but it really was related to artistic performance, to the acting. I believe that the actress interpreted this

incident differently than I did.” ‘Don’t draw conclusions’ The actress came forward last year and said Kim forced her into unwanted, unscripted sex and nude scenes and slapped her repeatedly while shooting his 2013 award-winning film Moebius — before replacing her with another actress. Prosecutors dropped the sex abuse charge citing lack of evidence but fined Kim five million won for assault under a procedure to settle minor cases out of court. The actress — who said she had quit acting due to trauma — has appealed against the decision to dismiss the sex abuse allegation. But Kim said for him the case was closed. “There’s been a ruling in this case now and I’ve shouldered the responsibility,” he said. “I don’t entirely agree with the ruling

but I believe that these processes are also part and parcel of changing the system and helping us to make progress in the film industry. I’ll certainly bear this in mind in future as well.” Kim was in Berlin to present his latest picture Human, Space, Time and Human, which like many of films includes brutal rape scenes. He insisted his movies’ often violent content did not reflect his own behaviour. “I would like to be a good human being in my life,” he said. “My daily life is not like my films and I wouldn’t like to live that way. So please don’t draw conclusions about my personality because of looking at my films.”

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White House works to release Republican memo despite FBI warning Washington DC, February 1, 2018 The White House worked on Thursday to clear the release of a secret Republican memo alleging FBI bias against President Donald Trump in its Russia probe, an administration official said, disregarding a warning from the top U.S. law enforcement agency. The four-page document, crafted by Republican members of the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee, will be made public by the panel on Friday, a senior White House official said. An official also said Trump had read the document. The memo has become part of a wider battle between Republicans and Democrats over Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s criminal probe into potential collusion between Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and Russia to help him win the election and whether Trump has tried to obstruct the investigation.

Some lawmakers have warned that release of the memo could jeopardize intelligence sources and shatter a compact under which spy agencies share secrets with Congress on the understanding they will not be revealed to the public. A White House decision to release the memo also could prompt high-level resignations in U.S. law enforcement agencies. Mueller’s investigation and the FBI probe that preceded it have hung over Trump’s year-old presidency. Russia and Trump have both denied any collusion. The president has called Mueller’s investigation a “witch hunt” and “hoax.”

Democrats have denounced the memo as an effort by Trump’s fellow Republicans to undermine Mueller’s investigation. As White House legal and national security experts reviewed the document, the Senate’s No. 3 Republican, John Thune, urged his House colleagues to allow the Senate Intelligence Committee to review the memo and heed the FBI’s concerns before they made it public. Democrats have called the memo misleading, based on a selective use of highly classified data and intended to discredit Mueller’s work. Intelligence committee Democrats wrote their own memo that panel Republicans prevented from being released at the same time. Thune said if the Republican memo is released, the Democratic one should be, too.

Wednesday said he discovered that Nunes had sent the White House a version of the memo that was “materially altered” and not what the panel voted on Monday to release. ‘IT IS ILLEGITIMATE’ “This action is not only dangerous, it is illegitimate, and violates House rules,” Pelosi said. The Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a rare rebuke on Wednesday to the president and his fellow Republicans in Congress who are pushing to release the memo. “The FBI was provided a limited opportunity to review this memo the day before the committee voted to release it,” the FBI said in a statement. “As expressed during our initial review, we have grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo’s accuracy.” Justice Department officials have also said releasing the memo could jeopardize classified information.

The memo was commissioned by Devin Nunes, the House intelligence panel’s Republican chairman who also served as a member of the president’s transition team before Trump took office. Top House Democrat Nancy Pelosi and top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer on Thursday called on Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan to remove Nunes as the committee’s chairman. Pelosi and Schumer made the demand after the committee’s senior Democrat, Adam Schiff, late on

Nunes has dismissed the objections to the memo’s release as “spurious.” Democrats are arguing for a new vote in the House Intelligence Committee to make the public memo, because they say Nunes altered the text of the memo that the panel had voted on earlier in the week. Such a vote, if it happens, would likely not take place before Monday. Thune, attending a political retreat in West Virginia with other lawmakers in Trump’s party, urged fellow Republicans to slow down regarding the memo’s release. “I think the Senate Intelligence

Committee needs to see it, for sure,” Thune said. “They need to pay careful attention to what our folks who protect us have to say about what this, you know, how this bears on our national security.” The Republican memo accuses the FBI and Justice Department of misleading a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court judge in March as they sought to extend an eavesdropping warrant against Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, four sources familiar with it have said. They said memo contends that the FBI and Justice Department failed to tell the judge that some of the information used to justify the warrant included portions of a dossier of Trump-Russia contacts that was opposition research paid for by Democrats. However, the sources said the memo does not mention that the request to extend surveillance on Page, which began before Trump took office, also relied on other highly classified information and that U.S. agencies had confirmed excerpts from the dossier included in the request. U.S. intelligence agencies have concluded that Russia interfered in the 2016 campaign using hacking and propaganda, an effort that eventually included attempting to tilt the race in favor of Trump. - Reuters

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#MeToo fashion show opens with angel wing models, pig-faced men New York, February 11, 2018 -- A fashion show inspired by the #MeToo social media campaign aimed at exposing sexual misconduct across the United States opened on Friday in New York with models sporting angel wings handcuffed to men in pig masks. Dressed in a floor-length black and white gown with leather trim and wings at her shoulders, Cheyenne Jacobs, 22, stopped at the end of the runway to declare herself a survivor of sexual abuse, giving the audience a brief account of being sexually assaulted in high school and raped in college. “I would like to take this moment as a stand of my healing, how far I’ve grown and also to say that this is not only a movement, not just stories, but we’re real people who have gone through real things,” she said. The #MeToo Fashion Show during New York Fashion Week was the brainchild of Myriam Chalek, creative director of fashion website American Wardrobe.

“I don’t think this fashion show is going to change things overnight, but if it can be a step further then I guess I’ve done my part. A woman who has been empowered is a woman who is unstoppable,” Chalek told Reuters in an interview. To the pace of trendy music, women from several walks of life, some smiling and others more serious, first strutted down a runway to display their designer clothes, then reappeared handcuffed to male models wearing pink pig masks. Among them was Alicia Kozakiewicz, 29, who was abducted in 2002 near her home in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, by a man who contacted her online, a case that made international headlines as one of the first such kidnappings of the internet age. Walking confidently down the runway in a black leather hood and dress cinched at the waist with a corset,

Kozakiewicz paused to explain how she overcame victim-blaming, even by her family, and became a motivational speaker and aspiring actor. ”The me-too movement is not about man-hating; it is not about fighting violence with violence,” said Kozakiewicz. “It is, however, empowering women and girls to live in a world free of fear so that they can be safe from sexual assault and sexual harassment.” While the show featured American Wardrobe fashions, Chalek said the event was nonprofit. Since October, hundreds of women have accused powerful men in business, politics, media and entertainment of sex abuse, joining the #MeToo social media movement that has shone a light on sexual assault and harassment in US life. In the fashion world, sexual abuse allegations have also come from men.

The New York Times reported last month that more than two dozen male models and assistants who worked with high-powered fashion photographers Bruce Weber and Mario Testino say they were subjected by them to molestation, sexual advances and unnecessary nudity. Lawyers for both photographers told The Times they denied the allegations, which nevertheless prompted the magazine company Conde Nast to suspend its work with them. Reuters could not independently confirm any of the accusations.

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Bid to find a Valentine for Romeo, world’s ‘loneliest frog’ With Valentine’s Day approaching, please spare a thought for Romeo the lonesome Bolivian frog. Ten years a bachelor, the childless amphibian has had to enlist human help to mount a last-ditch search for a Juliet which, if it fails, could mean the end of his species. Romeo, you see, is the last known frog of his kind. And he has been fruitlessly calling for a mate from his tank at the Cochabamba Natural History Museum for years. “We don’t want him to lose hope,” said Arturo Munoz, a conservation scientist associated with the Global Wildlife Conservation, which has hooked up with dating website Match to raise money for Romeo’s last shot at romance. The funds will be used to scour Bolivian streams and rivers for signs of a female Sehuencas water frog, even in tadpole form. “We continue to remain hopeful that others are out there so we can establish a conservation breeding programme to save this species,” said Munoz.

If Romeo croaks, he could follow the route of “Lonesome George”, a childless Galapagos tortoise who died in 2012, taking his entire subspecies with him. Looking for my Juliet As part of the campaign to raise US$15,000 (12,200 euros) by Valentine’s Day, the team has created a Match profile for Romeo. He is introduced by a video in which he shows off a variety of swimming moves. “Hi there. I’m Romeo, a Sehuencas water frog from Bolivia,” says a sexy, Spanish-accented voice. “I’m a pretty simple guy. I tend to keep to myself and love spending nights at home. I also love eating. then again, who doesn’t?” His mobile phone profile, also shown in the video, sports a big-eyed, pouting cartoon frog posing in a seductive manner, with the words: “Looking for my Juliet.” Romeo’s relationship status is listed as: “Never married”. Has kids? “No.”

“I bet you’re wondering what is a frog like me doing in a place like this?” the announcement continues. “Well, I’m here to find my match, just like you. Except, my situation is a bit more… urgent.” ‘If you believe in love’ When Romeo was collected 10 years ago, said Munoz, “we knew the Sehuencas water frog, like other amphibians in Bolivia, was in trouble, but we had no idea we wouldn’t be able to find a single other individual in all this time. “Romeo started to call for a mate about a year after he was brought into captivity, but those calls have slowed in the last few years.” Compared to other frogs in the genus, Munoz told AFP, Romeo has an especially musical mating call, and has taught biologists much about his species. It is a shy creature, usually hiding under rocks in his enclosure. It emerges only at feeding time, with earthworms and snails among its favourite snacks. If they can raise enough money for travel and equipment, the team of sci-

entists hopes to launch 10 expeditions to locations where the species was once common, as well as similar habitats, or places where nobody has looked before. They will also scour streams and rivers for DNA evidence that the Sehuencas water frog may still be there, even if individuals cannot be tracked down. If all else fails, Munoz does not rule out cloning as a means of preserving this amphibian species which, like many others, is threatened by climate change, habitat loss, alien predatory species introduced to rivers, and a fungus blamed for frog extinctions worldwide. “So, if you believe in love and want to help an old frog out, please donate to my cause,” Romeo’s video concludes. “Adios amigos.”

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ble group,” Rachel Simpson, an epidemiologist at the University of Oxford, commented in the same journal.

Why being a single dad can shorten your life Paris, Feb 15, 2018 — The risk of dying prematurely more than doubles for single fathers compared to single mothers or paired-up dads, according to a study of Canadian families published yesterday. “Our research highlights that single fathers have higher mortality, and demonstrates the need for public health policies to help identify and support these men,” said lead author Maria Chiu, a scientist at the University of Toronto. The findings, published in The Lancet Public Health, may apply to wealthy nations with similar ratios of single-parent families to Canada, the researchers said. Chiu and colleagues tracked nearly 40,500 people across Canada over 11 years. The subjects — who included 4,590 single moms and 871 single dads — were, on average, in their early 40s when study began. Nearly 700 died by the end of the monitoring period.

Compared to partnered fathers or single mums, the death rate was three times higher among single fathers. Factoring in that solo dads tended to be older, had higher cancer rates, and were more prone to heart disease, the researchers concluded their mortality risk was still twice as high. Likely culprits include poor lifestyle choices and stress, Chiu said. “We did find that single fathers tended to have unhealthier lifestyles,” which could include poor diet, lack of exercise, or excessive drinking, she said. Men parenting on their own were more likely to be separated, divorced or widowed than single mothers — a larger proportion of whom raise babies conceived outside of a relationship, the team found. Having experienced a breakup is a risk factor for mental ill health. “These results show that single fathers might be a particularly vulnera-

Making matters worse, a 2016 study showed that go-it-alone dads — even if they acknowledge being in poor shape, physically and mentally — are less likely to seek professional help than women. A stiff drink Single-parent households have become more common across the developed world in recent decades. In the United States, for example, the percentage of children living with single mothers nearly tripled from eight per cent in 1960 to 23 per cent in 2016, according to the US Census.

Rates of single-parenthood are even higher in many low-income nations, especially in Africa, according to Joseph Chamie, former director of the UN Population Division. Close to 40 per cent of children in South Africa, for example, have their mother as the sole parent, and four per cent have only a dad. Other countries with a large share of single-parent households include Mozambique (36 per cent), Dominican Republic (35 percent), Liberia (31 per cent), and Kenya (30 per cent), he noted in a 2016 report. “Of the world’s 2.3 billion children, 14 per cent — or 320 million — are living in a single-parent household,” he calculated.

The percentage living with single fathers increased from one to four over the same period.

In at least two categories, single fathers hold a slight edge over solo mums.

In Europe, Denmark tops the list of single-parent households which make up 30 per cent of the total.

Researchers at the University of Illinois found that mums on their own make about two-thirds of what their male counterparts earn.

Of those, 23 per cent are headed by women and seven per cent by men, according to the OECD rich country grouping. The corresponding percentages are 19 and four for France; 14 and five for Sweden, 17 and two for Germany; 16 and three for Canada.

And a study in South Korea, published in PLOS ONE, showed single mothers were three times more likely to become alcohol dependent.

Georgia Asian Times February 1-15, 2018

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Snowboarding: Mission Kim-possible as teenager soars to gold PyeongChang, February 13, 2018 -Chloe Kim blew away the competition to win the women’s snowboard halfpipe gold at Pyeongchang’s Phoenix Snow Park on Tuesday, the American teenager finishing well clear of China’s Liu Jiayu and compatriot Arielle Gold. The 17-year-old Kim produced a top score of 98.25 points on her third and final run to beat Liu by almost 10 points in front of the largest crowd seen at the venue so far to live up to her billing as a heavy favorite for the gold. Liu was the only woman who seemed capable of challenging Kim and will be delighted to earn her first Olympic medal at the third time of asking, as she also denied the United States a chance of sweeping the podium. The Chinese, ranked second in the world, laid down a good first run to score 85.50 but Kim responded immediately and sent a comprehensive message to the rest of the field with

an opening 93.75 effort that she made look easy.

hard on herself and thought she could have done even better on that final run.

Her performance put pressure on her rivals to raise their game and Liu, competing at her third Games, tried her best to respond with an improved performance on the longest halfpipe in Olympic history.

“So that final was just for me and to show myself that I could do it and put down the best run that I could.”

Liu scored 89.75 to close on Kim, who fell attempting back-to-back 1080s during her second run, but the 25-year-old Chinese failed to score higher in the final round, allowing the American a chance to enjoy what was effectively a victory run.

Kim, who leads the world rankings and was the overwhelming favorite coming into the Olympics, admitted there had been pressure on her to succeed.

Kim launched into her back-to-back 1080s, the first method and the second cab, to score a near-perfect 98.25 and cement her status as the leading light in women’s snowboarding. “I knew I wouldn’t have been satisfied going home with the gold but knowing I could have done even better,” said Kim, who admitted to being


“There has definitely been a lot of hype around this, on just a two-hour time period (for the final). It is pretty nerve-wracking as this has been a dream of mine since I was a little girl,” she added. “I put a lot of pressure on myself and wanted to put down the best run I have ever done.” Gold left it late but delivered when it

mattered, saving her best for the final round, which she started with a risky 1080 at the top of the run on her way to scoring 85.75. The 21-year-old, who suffered a separated shoulder shortly before the 2014 Sochi Olympics, said coming third was tinged with sadness as it bumped team mate Kelly Clark off the podium. “It was a bittersweet position to be in when it came down to Kelly and I for third position,” Gold lamented. “She is someone I have looked up to ever since I started snowboarding, even more so after I got to know her. All the work she does behind the scenes is something I have tried to incorporate.” Clark, competing at her fifth Games, showed she still has plenty to teach the younger generation with a score of 83.50 on her third run. However, the day was all about Kim. - Reuters

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Aubameyang arrival has Mkhitaryan dreaming big at Arsenal London, February 8, 2018 - Henrikh Mkhitaryan is living a dream at Arsenal after being reunited with close friend and “the best teammate” he’s shared a locker room with in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Mkhitaryan bagged three assists on his home debut, including the pass that set up Aubameyang’s first goal for Arsenal, as the Gunners thrashed Everton 5-1 last weekend to breath a fresh air of optimism into an often-frustrated Emirates crowd. Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan formed a lethal partnership in three years together at Borussia Dortmund before the Armenian left for a difficult 18-month spell at Manchester United. However, the arrival of another former Dortmund connection in Arsenal’s new head of recruitment Sven Mislintat helped bring the pair together again as Alexis Sánchez’s move to United saw Mkhitaryan head in the other direction. Arsenal subsequently splashed a club record £56 million (RM307 million) on Aubameyang on the final day of the January transfer window. “I think it could only be in a dream

that we could join another club other than Dortmund, but I am very happy for that,” said Mkhitaryan. “I have known him very well, he is one of my best friends and the best teammate I have ever had. I am very happy to have him here and I think all the fans are happy to see him in an Arsenal shirt.”

Bare-chested Tongan flag-bearer wins Korean hearts PyeongChang, February 9, 2018 Tonga’s bare-chested flag-bearer for their one-man Winter Olympics team was given a warm reception by the crowd in sub-zero temperatures at the Opening Ceremony on Friday.

The 34-year-old Taufatofua also carried his country’s flag at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro where he competed in taekwondo.

of your football career only the titles mean something,” he added.

“I don’t want to find excuses,” he said.

“I think if you play football, it doesn’t matter for which club, you have to achieve the maximum and you have to win titles because if you are playing just to play football it is better to stop playing it.”

“I don’t want to blame anyone… I am starting a new chapter in my life, in my football career, and I am very happy to be here.

“What can I say? I love playing with him. I can understand him from one step and hopefully for the next games we are going to achieve more.” Arsène Wenger needs his revamped frontline, including Mesut Özil as well as Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan, to continue to shine if Arsenal are to maintain hopes of a top-four finish when they face local rivals Tottenham Hotspur in the North London derby on Saturday. Sixth-placed Arsenal sit five points off the Champions League places, but Mkhitaryan insists the club’s ambitions must be to win trophies. “First of all, we have to win lots of games. Secondly, we have to think that we have to win titles because at the end

United manager José Mourinho’s lack of trust in Mkhitaryan has been blamed for the latter’s failure to make a lasting impression at Old Trafford, but he insisted he has nothing to prove in the Premier League.

“I will be pleased to achieve more than I have done in Manchester, of course. I don’t have anything to prove to anyone.”

Georgia Asian Times February 1-15, 2018

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HEALTH This year’s flu shot was 36 per cent effective, says US estimate Miami, Feb 16 — This season’s flu shot was 36 per cent effective overall, far less than the 2016-2017 vaccine but still worth getting because it can help ward off serious complications, US health officials said Thursday. The interim report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was released in the final weeks of the current flu season, which has been the most active since the swine flu pandemic of 2009.

World Cancer Day: How healthy lifestyle changes could help lower your risk of cancer February 4 marks World Cancer Day, which aims to unite the whole world in the fight against cancer and raise awareness of the disease. As more and more research focuses on how our lifestyle can affect our risk of developing cancer, here we round up some of the latest findings which suggest small everyday changes we can make to help reduce our risk and improve health overall. Don’t feel guilty about your coffee habit Although experts are not calling for anyone to take up drinking coffee to prevent diseases such as cancer, many recent studies have concluded that if you already love a morning cup of java then carry on with your daily habit, linking moderate coffee consumption to a lower risk of several cancers, including prostate, endometrial, skin and liver cancer. Most studies suggest that one to three cups a day brings health benefits, however many researchers caution against drinking more as excess caffeine consumption may bring health effects, and also advise limiting coffee intake while pregnant. Meat in moderation A large, high-profile 2015 study by

the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) which analyzed more than 800 studies made headlines when it revealed that eating a large amount of processed meats such as sausages, ham, and beef jerky, and red meat such as beef, pork, and lamb, could increase the risk of cancer of the colon, rectum, pancreas, and prostate. Although the World Health Organization responded to the report by saying that there is no need for people to stop eating meat altogether, it acknowledged that reducing meat consumption could be a good idea. Various other recent studies have also found that reducing meat consumption in favor of a more plant-based diet with plenty of fruit, vegetables, and legumes, could have a positive effect on health overall and help reduce the risk of cancer. Maintain a healthy weight According to recent research, being overweight or obese exponentially increases the chance of suffering from heart disease or cancer, finding that women who are obese are 12 times more likely to develop cancer than women who were a normal weight, and women who were classed as overweight but not obese still had four times the risk of cancer than those who were normal weight. The risk was not as high for men,

“The risk for A(H3N2) associated medically-attended influenza illness was reduced by more than half (59 per cent) among vaccinated children,” said the report. Also, the vaccine “provided substantial protection” against circulating A(H1N1)viruses, which were less common than H3N2 this year. The shot was 67 per cent effective against H1N1.

Last season’s flu vaccine was apparently better —48 per cent effective overall and 32 per cent effective in the United States against the most common (A)H3N2 strain.

“CDC continues to recommend influenza vaccination while influenza viruses are circulating in the community; several more weeks of influenza activity are likely,” it said.

This season, the vaccine was just 25 per cent effective against A(H3N2), the predominant strain of flu in circulation, the CDC report said.

The flu is typically a mild illness, but can turn deadly and lead to life-threatening complications like pneumonia.

This “indicates that vaccination provided some protection, in contrast to recently reported, nonsignificant interim estimates of 17 per cent from Canada and 10 per cent from Australia,” said the report. The CDC stressed that despite the low numbers, the vaccine prevented many flu-related hospitalizations among children aged six months to eight years.

but being obese still doubled a man’s likelihood of developing some type of cancer. However, there was some good news, with researchers finding that even small weight reductions can bring huge health benefits, with the team advising a healthy diet and physical exercise to try to maintain a healthy weight. Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables Although current guidelines tell us to get our 5-a-day, a recent meta-study

The effectiveness of the flu vaccine varies from year to year, and has ranged from 10-60 per cent over the past 12 years, according to emergency room doctor Robert Glatter of Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. Still, he said, it is worth getting until a better, universal vaccine can be made. “It’s still prudent to get the vaccine because the severity of your illness will be reduced,” Glatter said.

that looked at nearly two million people worldwide found that consuming ten portions of fruit and vegetables brings even greater benefits. The researchers found that eating 800 grams of fruit and vegetables every day — equivalent to 10 portions — decreases risk of death and also reduces cancer risk by 13%. The team also found that green vegetables, such as spinach or green beans, yellow vegetables, such as peppers and carrots, and cruciferous vegetables were particularly beneficial for reducing cancer risk.

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Misc Asia

Japan’s ‘Insta-gran’ finds fame with wacky selfies

A madcap Japanese great-grandmother armed with a camera and an appetite for mischief has shot to fame for taking side-splitting selfies — many of which appear to put her in harm’s way.

became hooked on the hobby after being invited to join a local class.

Closing in on her 90th birthday, Kimiko Nishimoto tweaks the nose of fear: she has amassed more than 41,000 followers in just two months since she started regularly posting her hilarious snaps on Instagram.

“I even sleep with it by my bedside, just in case. I always have it close.”

The goofy photos show the fun-loving pensioner riding a broomstick like Harry Potter or, even more alarmingly, knocked over in an apparent traffic accident. “I’ve actually never injured myself taking a photo,” Nishimoto tells AFP in an interview at her home in Kumamoto, western Japan. “I’m always focusing hard on taking a fun photo so I really don’t think about the danger too much,” she explains. Nishimoto, who only took up photography aged 72, reveals she quickly

“I love my camera,” adds the sassy octogenarian, who has three grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

A decade later she secured her first solo exhibition — held in her home town — but Nishimoto’s recent decision to showcase snaps of her daredevil stunts on social media has now catapulted her to stardom. Such is her celebrity now that many fans were shut out of her exhibition at a Tokyo gallery in December as it struggled to cope with the crowds. “At first I didn’t even know that my photos were that popular,” the former housewife muses with a twinkle in her eye, adding: “It’s not so much that I’m trying to shock people, I just take photos that I find funny. It’s just a bit of fun really.”

Born in 1928 — the year Emperor Hirohito was enthroned and Walt Disney created Mickey Mouse — Nishimoto is disarmingly young at heart and possesses a wicked sense of humour. She manages her social media accounts herself through her smartphone, while her son helps her to set up some of the shots. Many of Nishimoto’s photos show her face contorted in mock anguish. In one instance she is shown having seemingly fallen off a bike as a car

speeds past, narrowly avoiding catastrophe. In another, she is whizzing along on her motorised buggy while fighting off a flock of angry birds. In a more risque image that could pass for a kidnapper’s ransom photo, she is seen wrapped in a garbage bag. “It’s not like ideas just suddenly pop into my head but wherever I go I think about what it would be fun to dress up as in that place,” she chuckles.

Georgia Asian Times February 1-15, 2018

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Misc Asia Samsung scion Lee Jae Yong walks free as South Korea court suspends jail Seoul, February 5, 2018 - A South Korean appeals court on Monday suspended a jail sentence handed down to Samsung Group heir Lee Jae Yong, setting him free after a year’s detention amid a corruption scandal that brought down the former president.

Two dead, more than 100 injured in Taiwan earthquake: government Hualien, Taiwan, February 6, 2018A magnitude 6.4 earthquake struck near the Taiwanese coastal city of Hualien late on Tuesday, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said, killing at least two, injuring hundreds and trapping people inside several collapsed buildings. Fire officials said up to 16 people were trapped in a residential building in Hualien, an area popular with tourists on Taiwan’s rugged east coast. The quake struck about 22 km (14 miles) northeast of Hualien shortly before midnight, with its epicenter very shallow at just 1 km, the USGS said. Several aftershocks hit the area but there was no word of any tsunami warning. The government said 214 people had been injured. “The president has asked the cabinet and related ministries to immediately launch the ‘disaster mechanism’ and to work at the fastest rate on disaster relief work,” President Tsai Ing-wen’s office said in a statement. Premier William Lai said the government was urgently repairing a major highway damaged by the quake. Among the buildings toppled in the

quake was the Marshal Hotel in Hualien, where two people were trapped inside, the government said. Four other buildings, including two hotels and a military hospital, also tilted during the quake in Hualien, which is about 120 km (75 miles) south of the capital, Taipei. “We were still open when it happened,” said Lin Ching-wen, who operates a restaurant near the military hospital. “I grabbed my wife and children and we ran out and tried to rescue people,” he said. The government said two bridges in the city were either cracked or could not be used due to the quake. An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.1 struck nearby on Sunday. Taiwan, a self-ruled island that China considers part of its territory, is prone to earthquakes. More than 100 were killed in a quake in southern Taiwan in 2016, and some Taiwanese remain scarred by a 1999 earthquake with 7.6 magnitude that was felt across the island and which killed more than 2,000 people. - Reuters

Seoul High Court jailed Lee for two and a half years, reducing the original term by half, and suspended the sentence for charges including bribery and embezzlement for four years, meaning he does not have to serve time as long as he behaves.

Lee of bribing Park, by supporting the equestrian career of the daughter of a friend of Park, in return for help in strengthening his control of Samsung Electronics, the crown jewel of the country’s largest conglomerate and one of the world’s biggest technology companies. He was also convicted of embezzlement and other charges. But the appeals court said Lee did not solicit any such help. It also said just 3.6 billion won was paid as a bribe, not 7.2 billion as the lower court had said.

Lee, 49, heir to one of the world’s biggest corporate empires, had been detained since last February. Emerging from Seoul Detention Centre, Lee said his time in jail had been useful.

Presiding senior judge Cheong Hyung Sik also called the nature of Lee’s involvement in Samsung’s support for Park’s friend “passive compliance to political power”.

“Again, I feel sorry to everyone for not showing my best side. And it has been a really precious time for a year reflecting on myself,” Lee told reporters.

“Park threatened Samsung Electronics executives,” the judge said. “The defendant provided a bribe, knowing it was bribery to support (the friend’s daughter), but was unable to refuse.”

He added he needed to visit his ailing father, Samsung Group patriarch Lee Kun Hee, who suffered a heart attack in 2014.

Prosecutors did not have an immediate comment. Lee’s lawyer Lee In Jae said the defence will appeal to the Supreme Court to try to overturn the convictions.

“It’s a positive thing that the owner is returning,” said Mr Greg Roh, a stock analyst at HMC Investment & Securities. “ could be good that the owner returns to set standards in such a rapidly changing time.” Shares in flagship Samsung Electronics, of which Lee is vice chairman, reversed earlier losses and closed up 0.5 per cent compared to a 1.3 per cent fall in the wider market. President Park Geun Hye was dismissed in March after being impeached in a case that brought scrutiny to the cosy ties between South Korea’s chaebols – big family-owned corporate groups – and its political leaders. Park, who denies wrongdoing, is standing trial accused of bribery, abuse of power and coercion. A lower court in August convicted

Lee, wearing a dark suit and white shirt and looking noticeably worn, did not show any emotion when the ruling was announced. Prosecutors had sought a 12-year jail term for Lee. Mr Chung Sun Sup, CEO of research firm, said he was disappointed with the ruling. “It’s repeating the same old history, being lenient to the chaebol owners,” he said. “I think Lee has to show that he reassure to the public he can change the corporate culture.” With the end of his year-long detention, which according to local media he adjusted to with physical workouts and reading books, Lee could continue with his existing roles, including as director of Samsung Electronics.

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Looking for a footloose, car-free vacation? Check out these pedestrian-friendly cities London, Feb 12, 2018― Munich, Kyoto and Bordeaux have been named some of the most beautiful, pedestrian-friendly tourism destinations in a new list compiled by For the selection, the online reservation site teased out trends from the reviews of their 26 million travellers, who praised the walkable neighbourhoods of cities with ample green spaces, quaint and charming streets, and village-like feel. Strap on your most comfortable walking shoes, for their selection for the best car-free destinations: Munich The biggest pedestrian-friendly feature going for Munich is its English Garden, a sprawling park in the centre of the city that’s among the biggest in Europe, with its own lake, beer garden and Japanese tea salon. Kyoto Headed to Kyoto? Visitors recommend planning extra stroll time around the temple Kiyomizu-dera, where ancient sanctuaries and food stalls create a dynamic, animated street scene.

Helsinki One of the best ways to take in the minimalist beauty of Scandinavian design is to stroll through the streets of Helsinki, a tribute to Finnish heritage. Bordeaux Along with the city’s neoclassic architecture and majestic Pont de Pierre bridge, Bordeaux boasts the largest reflecting pool in the world at Place de la Bourse, the Water Mirror. Florence With its ancient cobblestone streets and narrow alleyways, off-limits to mobility of the motorized kind, the city invites visitors to amble slowly and enjoy its distinctly Florentine beauty. A particular favorite is Ponte Vecchio, the only bridge that was spared during the German occupation of the Second World War. Rounding out the selection are New York, Perth, San Francisco, Vancouver and Montevideo, Uruguay.

South Korea’s ‘penis park’ draws an Olympic crowd Sinnam, Feb 13 — Even the bright red lighthouse in the tiny South Korean port of Sinnam is shaped like a penis. The port is home to Haesindang Park, better known as “Penis Park”, a monument to fertility, born from a legend about a virgin and fish. A normally obscure attraction, it is drawing curious crowds of visitors from the nearby Winter Olympics. There are penis totem poles, penis benches and penis wind chimes. There is even a penis-shaped cannon, with a warning to tourists that it should not be mounted.

fish after she died until one fisherman urinated into the sea. The fishermen later erected a shrine and a phallus on the cliffs of the village to satisfy the virgin’s spirit. Confronting and unusual to some eyes, the penis park is less of an oddity in a country with one of the lowest fertility rates in the world. Among the 35-member club of mostly rich nations, the OECD, South Korea has the lowest rate. The country now has several “penis parks”, so many that Haesindang markets itself as the “only one on the east coast”.

“I’ve been all over the world and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Keith Childs, a Londoner who was visiting the park along with other people working at the Pyeongchang Olympics, being staged about an hour’s drive away.

Just 1.17 babies per woman are born each year in South Korea, according to the latest government data, for 2016.

The legend behind the park has been painstakingly chiselled into a row of stone penises. It tells of a virgin who died in a storm as her boyfriend collected seaweed from a rock in a nearby cove.

“Young people face a harsh reality which includes high unemployment rates and an unstable job prospective so individuals choose not to have a child to sustain their own lives,” said Ryu Yang-ji, director at the Presidential Committee on Aging Society and Population Policy. — Reuters

According to one version of the legend, the village was unable to catch

That is set to hit an historic low of 1.04 babies per woman this year, according to a government official.

Georgia Asian Times Feb 1-15, 2018  

Georgia Asian Times cover the multicultural Asian American community in metro Atlanta and Georgia.

Georgia Asian Times Feb 1-15, 2018  

Georgia Asian Times cover the multicultural Asian American community in metro Atlanta and Georgia.