Monitor: Miscellaneous

Stories from around the world
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The Independent Culture
South China Morning Post

THAILAND'S WARRING student gangs are no match for elite troops at a boot camp where they have been forced to suck shared toffees, give blood and listen to bedtime lectures from a Buddhist monk. The country's courts are so fed up with the gangs of technical students who set about each other with homemade knives and guns that they are now getting the army to sort them out. Gang members have been weeping and wilting under the regime operated at the First Special Warfare Centre in Petchaburi where hardened troops have been knocking the students into shape. The boot camp seems to be working. Bed-time Buddhist teachings and lectures focusing on the law, drugs and sexually transmitted diseases, along with the tough physical regime have been too much for some. The homesick hard-nuts have been learning that it is no bad thing to shed the odd tear.

Times of India

Amnesty International has called for the immediate release of a three- year-old girl in Myanmar it described as "the world's youngest prisoner of conscience". Amnesty said it feared the child might suffer serious physical and psychological damage during "this cruel ordeal" of detention, and called for her to be released immediately with her mother.