"The first casualty of war is truth." -- Rudyard Kipling

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The Chinese Coast Guard is stepping up patrols near the Taiwanese-controlled Kinmen Islands following an incident involving Taiwan’s Coast Guard that ended with two Chinese fishermen drowning.

The Kinmen Islands are controlled by Taiwan but are located just off the coast of mainland China, only about 3 miles away from the Chinese city of Xiamen.

The conflicts in Ukraine and the Middle East have not distracted Washington from flexing its military muscles in the Asia-Pacific. Through one drill after another, the US is coercing regional countries into taking its side, further intensifying regional conflicts and transforming the Asia-Pacific into a more dangerous place.

Myanmar is interested in BRICS, including the introduction of a common BRICS currency, and is studying the bloc, Myanmar's Minister of Investment and Foreign Economic Relations Kan Zaw told Sputnik on Tuesday.

"Since May 2023, we have been recognized as a dialogue partner in the SCO [Shanghai Cooperation Organisation]. We are also studying BRICS and its development. Moreover, we are interested in BRICS and the BRICS single currency initiative," the minister said in an interview.

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In 2023, the world experienced another wave of science and technology (S&T) innovation, from the introduction of the first over-the-counter birth control pill in the U.S. to the stunning growth of ChatGPT and artificial intelligence.

BANGKOK (AP) — Myanmar’s military government on Wednesday said it will draft 60,000 young men and women yearly for military service under its newly activated conscription law, with call-ups beginning after the April festival marking the country’s traditional New Year.

Indonesian Defence Minister Prabowo Subianto has declared victory in the presidential election after unofficial vote counts showed him with a significant lead over his rivals.