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Malaysian authorities on Sunday ordered most of the country's schools shut for two days because of possible health risks posed by the thick haze from Indonesian forest fires. "The haze that is happening is beyond our control," said Education Minister Mahdzir Khalid. Close to half of Malaysia's 52 pollutant monitoring stations around the country registered "unhealthy" air quality on Sunday.

A new list of the best Asian films of all time was published this week, as the region's increasingly vibrant cinema scene celebrated another bonanza in Busan. The 20th anniversary of the Busan International Film Festival, in South Korea, marked its milestone with a poll of noted Asian filmmakers and international critics of Asian film, who were all asked for their top ten. Hou's breakthrough work "A City Of Sadness" was ranked fifth-best of all time on a list that was topped by Japanese master auteur Yasujiro Ozu's seminal family drama "Tokyo Story" from 1953.

Hong Kong (AFP) - Third-round leader Jin Cheng won a place at the US Masters when a typhoon meant the cancellation of the final round of Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship in Hong Kong on Sunday.

Ex-Soviet Kyrgyzstan headed to the polls on Sunday for a hotly-contested parliamentary vote, but the results are unlikely to change the country's firmly pro-Russian trajectory. Polling stations across the majority-Muslim Central Asian country of six million opened at 0200 GMT, the election commission said, as 14 parties and more than 2,000 candidates battle for seats in the 120-member legislature. The Social Democratic Party of Kyrgyzstan (SDPK), affiliated to current President Almazbek Atambayev, is expected to do well in the poll, but can only take a maximum of 65 seats due to a stipulation in the country's constitution.

HONG KONG (AP) — Third-round leader Jin Cheng of China won the Asia-Pacific Amateur golf championship on Sunday when heavy rain and high winds forced the cancellation of the fourth round at Clearwater Bay.

Hong Kong (AFP) - China's men beat the Philippines 78-67 in the FIBA Asia Championship final before an ecstatic 7,000-strong capacity home crowd in Changsha late on Saturday to secure a place at the 2016 Olympics.

MAKASSAR, Indonesia (AP) — Rugged terrain and bad weather have hampered the search Saturday for a small passenger plane that went missing with 10 people on board in eastern Indonesia, officials said. The search was halted at dusk and would resume Sunday.

SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Yemen's prime minister visited an area leading to the Bab al-Mandab strait, the strategic southern entrance to the Red Sea and the gateway to the Suez Canal, after anti-rebel forces pushed Shiite rebels out of the immediate area, government spokesman Rajeh Badi said Saturday.

CHANGSHA, China (AP) — Captain Mohammadsamad Nik scored 35 points Saturday to lead Iran to a 68-63 win over Japan in the third-place match at the FIBA Asian basketball championships.

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — A vehicle carrying a rhino sculpture led anti-poaching marchers in a Johannesburg district. Kenya's environment minister joined conservationists at a similar rally in Nairobi, the capital. In London, activists in elephant costumes demanded an end to the ivory trade.

By Michelle Martin BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Europe needed to protect its external frontiers as it faces the greatest influx off refugees since World War Two - a crisis that she said was "testing Europe's mettle". Hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants have arrived in Europe this year from the Middle East, Africa and Asia, many fleeing war or poverty. Speaking in a weekly video podcast released on Saturday, Merkel said Europe needed to contribute to dealing with this global challenge.

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