Xinhua Asia-Pacific news summary at 1000 GMT, Dec. 24

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VIENTIANE -- Laos needs to strengthen capacity building in order to further cooperate with other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members, particularly in the socio-cultural field, Lao Deputy Culture Minister Savankhone Razmountry has said.

He made the remarks at a meeting to review the achievements made in activities of ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC). The meeting was attended by representatives from various ministries and organizations, the local daily Vientiane Times reported on Thursday. (Laos-ASEAN-Cooperation)

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TOKYO -- Japanese prosecutors on Thursday said they had decided not to indict former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe over allegations his support group failed to report spending related to annual parties thrown for Abe's supporters at Tokyo hotels in its political fund reports.

The prosecutors have instead issued a summary indictment for Hiroyuki Haikawa, a state-paid secretary to Abe, and will seek to fine him for failing to report in the group's political fund reports spending and revenue related to parties that were held on the eve of government-funded cherry blossom viewing events during Abe's premiership. (Japan-Abe-Allegations)

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SUVA -- The China Chamber of Commerce in Fiji (CCCF) donated on Thursday 20,000 Fijian dollars (about 10, 000 U.S. dollars) in cash to the Fiji Red Cross Society (FRCS) to help the island nation fight tropical cyclone Yasa which has killed four people and caused huge property damage.

The handing over ceremony was held in the Fiji Red Cross Society with the participation of representatives of the Chinese enterprises in the island nation. (Fiji-Cyclone-Donation)

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SEOUL -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in's approval rating fell 2.1 percentage points from a week earlier to 37.4 percent this week, a weekly poll showed Thursday.

According to the Realmeter survey, the negative assessment on Moon's conduct of state affairs rose 1.4 percentage points to 59.1 percent. (S. Korea-Moon-Approval Rating) Enditem

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