Xinhua Asia-Pacific news summary at 1000 GMT, Dec. 6

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SEOUL -- South Korea and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) have agreed to verify the pilot withdrawal of guard posts in the inter-Korean border area, South Korea's Defense Ministry said Thursday.

The verification will be conducted through on-site visits on Dec. 12 by sending seven-member teams to guard posts, which were subject to the pullout. (South Korea-DPRK-Guard post withdrawal)

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KUALA LUMPUR -- Malaysian Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook said on Thursday that Malaysia seeks to become China's transshipment hub for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Delivering the opening address at the International Forum here, Loke said Malaysia's strategic position in the region with a large number of ports facing the South China Sea and Malacca Strait and commitment to the Belt and Road Initiative made it an ideal candidate. (Malaysia-China-Cooperation)

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KABUL -- Afghanistan's Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC) has invalidated all votes cast during the Oct. 20 parliamentary elections in Kabul constituency, an ECC official said Thursday.

Alireza Rohani, spokesman and secretary of ECC, told reporters at a press conference here that the widespread fraud and vote rigging have damaged the transparency and credibility of polls in Kabul and led to the invalidation of all votes cast in the constituency. (Afghanistan-Election)

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BANGKOK -- A 10-day environmental campaign will be launched on Monday to pick up garbage, either floating or submerged, in Thailand's largest river Chao Phraya River, said a senior government official on Thursday.

Ang Thong provincial governor Rewat Prasong said the authorities in 10 central provinces have joined hands for the campaign to remove the garbage, particularly plastic waste, from the 372-km-long Chao Phraya River, in the 10-day time beginning on Dec. 10. (Thailand-Environment-Plastic Bag)

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MANILA -- An Indonesian hostage kidnapped nearly three months ago by the Abu Sayyaf Group escaped Thursday from abductors and was rescued by the Philippine military in Sulu province in the southern Philippines.

Military and police authorities said Indonesian fisherman, named Usman Yusuf, 35, managed to escape at dawn from his abductors in the jungle camp where he was being held in the remote village in Panamao town in Sulu. (The Philippines-Hostage-Terrorist) Enditem

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