Top Asian News 3:44 a.m. GMT

HAJIN, India (AP) — On a hot day in August, members of a Kashmiri youth soccer team watched their 16-year-old captain, Saqib Bilal Sheikh, and goalkeeper Mudassir Rashid Parray, two years his junior, walk off the field toward a man on a motorcycle. The two teenagers were not seen again until months later, when they were returned to their hometown in body bags. Dying with his teammate in an 18-hour firefight in December, Mudassir became the youngest militant slain fighting Indian troops in a three-decade insurgency in Kashmir. The rebellion is drawing greater numbers of teenage boys and young men as New Delhi has increased its suppression of protest against Indian rule in the Himalayan region.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Amid increasing tensions with Beijing, the Pentagon on Tuesday released a new report that lays out U.S. concerns about China's growing military might, underscoring worries about a possible attack against Taiwan. Speaking to reporters, a senior defense intelligence official said the key concern is that as China upgrades its military equipment and technology and reforms how it trains and develops troops, it becomes more confident in its ability to wage a regional conflict. And Beijing's leaders have made it clear that reasserting sovereignty over Taiwan is their top priority. The official added, however, that although China could easily fire missiles at Taiwan, it doesn't yet have the military capability to successfully invade the self-governing island, which split from mainland China amid civil war in 1949.

BEIJING (AP) — China expressed its "strong dissatisfaction" with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday over his criticism of a death sentence given to a Canadian accused of drug smuggling at a retrial that followed a chilling of relations over the arrest of a senior Chinese technology executive. Trudeau should "respect the rule of law, respect China's judicial sovereignty, correct mistakes and stop making irresponsible remarks," foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said. "We express our strong dissatisfaction with this," Hua told reporters at a daily briefing. Her comments are the latest sign of a sharp cooling of China-Canada ties since Canada detained Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei, on Dec.

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese President Xi Jinping's government is sparing no expense to its international reputation in its determination to force Canada to back down over the case of a Chinese telecommunications executive it detained last month. While Beijing formally denies any connection, the arrest of two Canadians on vague national security charges and the re-sentencing of a convicted Canadian drug smuggler to death on Monday point to a determined campaign of intimidation and retribution. And while global perceptions of China's adherence to free trade and rule of law may take a beating, for Xi and other highly nationalistic Communist leaders, the stakes are simply too high.

SHENZHEN, China (AP) — The founder of China's Huawei, the world's biggest supplier of network gear to phone and internet companies, says his company would not share secrets about its customers and their communication networks. Ren Zhengfei spoke in a rare meeting with foreign reporters as Huawei Technologies Ltd. tries to protect its access to global telecom carriers that are investing heavily in next-generation technology. His comments were the 74-year-old former military engineer's most direct public response to accusations his company is controlled by the ruling Communist Party or is required to facilitate Chinese spying. Huawei is China's first global tech brand.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Breakfast at Manny Pacquiao's house began with a silent prayer, followed by more silence around the big dining room table as his massive entourage waited for the fighter to take the first bite. On the morning menu in the Hancock Park house were steaming plates of rice, topped with slices of beef. A helper set a few pieces of chicken in front of Pacquiao and a small plate of dried fish to go with the rice and beef he had already half finished. No need to watch his food intake in this training camp. Five days before his crossroads fight with Adrien Broner, Pacquaio was on his normal routine of five meals a day totaling 7-8,000 calories, almost all of which he'll burn off in the day's workouts.

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — A Saudi woman accepted as a refugee in Canada has said in an Australian television interview that she expected her experience would inspire other women to flee her homeland. Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun, 18, told Australian Broadcasting Corp. in an interview recorded in Toronto and broadcast in Australia on Tuesday that she hoped that the international attention on her flight from oppression in Saudi Arabia will be a catalyst for change. "I think the number of women fleeing from the Saudi administration and abuse will increase, especially since there is no system to stop them," Alqunun said. "I'm sure that there will be a lot more women running away.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea is no longer South Korea's "enemy," though Pyongyang's nuclear program still poses a security threat, according to Seoul's biennial defense document published Tuesday. It's the first time since 2010, the same year 50 South Koreans were killed in attacks blamed on the North, that the enemy label hasn't been applied, and a further sign of better ties between the rivals. The South Korean Defense Ministry white paper doesn't include past terms that labeled North Korea an "enemy, a "present enemy" or the South's "main enemy." It still said the North's weapons of mass destruction are a "threat to peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula," a reference to the North's missile and nuclear program.

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A Taliban suicide bomber killed at least four people and wounded scores when he detonated an explosive-laden vehicle late in the evening in the Afghan capital, officials said Tuesday. It was the latest in a relentless wave of near daily attacks by the Taliban, who now hold sway over about half of the country and regularly target Afghan forces. The violence comes despite stepped-up efforts by the United States to find a negotiated end to the country's 17-year war. Health Ministry spokesman Wahidullah Mayar said as many as 113 wounded were taken to different hospitals in Kabul after the Monday evening explosion near the Green Village compound, home to several international organizations and guesthouses.

PATTAYA, Thailand (AP) — A model from Belarus who claimed last year that she had evidence of Russian involvement in helping elect Donald Trump president pleaded guilty Tuesday in a Thai court in a case related to holding a sex training seminar and will be deported. A lawyer representing Vashukevich said she and seven co-defendants were given suspended 18-month prison terms and fines of 100,000 baht ($3,135), waived in view of nine months already served since the charges of soliciting and conspiracy were filed against them. All were arrested in February last year at a hotel in the seaside resort town of Pattaya, where Vashukevich and Russian self-styled sex guru Alexander Kirillov, a co-defendant, were giving a class in sexual relationships — fully clothed, at least when police and reporters burst in.