Anthony Kuhn

International Correspondent Anthony Kuhn official base is Jakarta, Indonesia, where he opened NPR's first bureau in that country in 2010. From there, he has covered Southeast Asia, and the gamut of natural and human diversity stretching from Myanmar to Fiji and Vietnam to Tasmania. During 2013-2014, he is covering Beijing, China, as NPR's Louisa Lim is on fellowship.

Prior to Jakarta, Kuhn spent five years based in Beijing as a NPR foreign correspondent reporting on China and Northeast Asia. In that time Kuhn covered stories including the effect of China's resurgence on rest of the world, diplomacy and the environment, the ancient cultural traditions that still exert a profound influence in today's China, and the people's quest for social justice in a period of rapid modernization and uneven development. His beat also included such diverse topics as popular theater in Japan and the New York Philharmonic's 2008 musical diplomacy tour to Pyongyang, North Korea.

In 2004-2005, Kuhn was based in London for NPR. He covered stories ranging from the 2005 terrorist attacks on London's transport system to the wedding of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles. In the spring of 2005, he reported from Iraq on the formation of the post-election interim government.

Kuhn began contributing reports to NPR from China in 1996. During that time, he also worked as an accredited freelance reporter with the Los Angeles Times, and as Beijing correspondent for the Far Eastern Economic Review.

In what felt to him a previous incarnation, Kuhn once lived on Manhattan's Lower East Side and walked down Broadway to work in Chinatown as a social worker. He majored in French literature at Washington University in St. Louis. He gravitated to China in the early 1980s, studying first at the Beijing Foreign Languages Institute and later at the Johns Hopkins University-Nanjing University Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing.

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Parallels
1:28 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Violence And Other Threats Raise Press Freedom Fears In Hong Kong

Police remove a protester during a pro-democracy rally early on July 2 in Hong Kong. Frustration is growing over the influence of Beijing on the city and its press.
Philippe Lopez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 9:08 am

On the evening of July 1, just hours after Hong Kong's biggest pro-democracy protests in years, the printing presses of the Ming Pao newspaper — long respected for its editorial independence — suddenly ground to a halt.

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Parallels
2:02 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

After Losing An Only Child, Chinese Parents Face Old Age Alone

A man looks at the painting Better To Have Only One Child at the China National Art Museum in Beijing. More than three decades after China's one-child policy took hold, some bereaved parents are suffering an unintended consequence of the policy: The loss of a child leaves them with no support in their old age.
Wang Zhao AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 10, 2014 5:04 pm

It's been nearly 3 1/2 decades since China's government started limiting most urban families to one child. The family planning policy successfully slowed the nation's population growth, but it has had some unintended consequences.

One is that some parents lose their only children to illness or accidents and end up with no one to care for them in their old age. Now, these parents have gotten together to demand their rights.

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Asia
3:04 am
Thu July 10, 2014

Mistrust Overshadows U.S. Talks With China

Originally published on Thu July 10, 2014 9:30 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne. High-level meetings between the U.S. and China underscore a long-term problem. They have the world's two largest economies. They're likely the two most important nations on earth.

INSKEEP: And neither trusts the other's intentions. Because they must cooperate, Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew are in Beijing for talks.

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Asia
2:25 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Marchers Take To Streets Of Hong Kong To Protest Eroding Autonomy

Originally published on Tue July 1, 2014 5:37 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Asia
3:21 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Democracy Protesters In Hong Kong Call For Free Elections

Originally published on Tue July 1, 2014 12:24 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Thousands of pro-democracy protesters marched in Hong Kong today.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

CHORUS: (Foreign language spoken).

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Asia
3:08 am
Mon June 30, 2014

In Unofficial Referendum, Hong Kong Voters Demand Change

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 11:32 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Residents of Hong Kong are pushing for more say over how they are governed. Results are in today on a referendum organized by democracy advocates aimed at giving Hong Kong voters power over choosing their own leader. Hundreds of thousands of residents casted ballots over the last 10 days. The vote is non-binding, but pro-democracy leaders hope it will apply pressure on China's Communist Party, which, in any event, has denounced the vote. Joining us to tell us more is NPR's Anthony Kuhn, he's in Hong Kong. Good morning.

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Asia
1:22 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Clock Is Ticking For Aung San Suu Kyi's Presidential Bid

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi speaks during a public rally in Yangon, Myanmar, on May 17. Democracy activists joined Suu Kyi to call for an amendment to Myanmar's constitution, a move she says is necessary if next year's general elections are to be free and fair.
Gemunu Amarasinghe AP

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 6:31 am

Time is running out for Myanmar's opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, in her bid to become president.

The long-serving political prisoner and democracy activist is now 67. If she wins general elections next year, she could become Asia's most famous politician.

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Asia
2:18 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

In Rift Over Interfaith Ban, A New Fault Line For Burmese Politics

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 7:50 am

Myanmar's parliament is now considering a bill that would restrict marriages of people from different religions. Buddhist nationalists hope it will protect their religion from the spread of Islam and claim it's a way to prevent coerced conversions, but critics lambaste the proposed law as targeting the country's Muslim minority.

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Asia
2:08 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

Chinese Authorities Ensure Tiananmen Anniversary Passes Quietly

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 5:18 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

25 years ago today, these were some of the sounds from Tiananmen Square, as Chinese soldiers used rifles and tanks to end nearly two months of pro-democracy protests.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTESTS)

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Asia
3:11 am
Wed June 4, 2014

25 Years Later, Tiananmen Square Is A Forbidden Subject In China

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 6:32 am

Immediately following the crackdown, the government began a long-term campaign of suppression. Even today, many believe the government's goal is to erase the historic event from the nation's memory.

Parallels
1:28 am
Wed May 28, 2014

In Buddhist-Majority Myanmar, Muslim Minority Gets Pushed To The Margins

Muslim Rohingya women are pictured at the Thae Chaung camp for internally displaced people in Sittwe, Myanmar, on April 22. The stateless Rohingya in western Myanmar have been confined to the camps since violence erupted with majority Buddhists in 2012. The camps rely on international aid agencies, but still lack adequate food and health care.
Minzayar Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 10:57 am

Thirteen-year-old Zomir Hussein lives with his family in a simple wooden home in a village outside the city of Sittwe, the capital of western Myanmar's Rakhine state. Not long ago, he accidentally overdosed on medicine he was taking to treat his tuberculosis.

Now he lies on the floor, his hands curled into claws, his eyes staring vacantly. He cries out to his parents for help. His mother cradles him, and for a moment, he seems to smile.

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Parallels
1:45 am
Wed May 14, 2014

China Puts Brass On Trial In Fight Against Military Corruption

Chinese sailors stand guard on China's first aircraft carrier as it travels toward a military base in Hainan province. China has been waging a public crackdown on military corruption, perhaps the largest such campaign in more than six decades of communist rule.
China Stringer Network Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 6:04 am

China's ongoing crackdown on military corruption may be the toughest — or at least best publicized — in more than six decades of communist rule. Some top brass are on trial, and teams of inspectors have fanned in search of graft.

But all of that may seem like a distant light at the end of a long tunnel for former navy captain Tan Linshu. Tan and his wife have lived in a tiny, subterranean room for two years as they search for justice in a case that suggests what the crackdown is up against.

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News
2:22 pm
Fri April 25, 2014

Obama Offers Support And Condolences In Somber South Korea

Originally published on Fri April 25, 2014 5:15 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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News
2:21 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Obama Raises Curtain On 4-Country East Asia Trip

Originally published on Wed April 23, 2014 9:06 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. President Obama has arrived in Japan on a weeklong trip that will also include stops in South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines. Along with trade talk, President Obama will be trying to reassure leaders that the U.S. will not abandon them. That's important because China is becoming more assertive in disputes with its neighbors.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports on the Obama administration's efforts.

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Asia
3:12 am
Mon April 21, 2014

Human Error Compounds Grief Over Korean Ferry Disaster

Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 5:53 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

We begin this part of the program by meeting a woman in limbo. She is searching for her sister who was a passenger on a South Korean ferry. Her story underlines the human cost of a ferry sinking in which more than 60 people died, more than 240 remain missing, people with connections to places around the world, including the United States.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports.

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Asia
6:07 am
Sun April 20, 2014

S. Korean Community Waits And Prays For Its Missing Students

Originally published on Sun April 20, 2014 9:53 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. For the first time since a ferry capsized and sank off the coast of South Korea Wednesday, divers have begun to recover bodies from inside the sunken vessel. The death toll has passed 50 with more than 250 still missing. Most of the passengers were students from a single high school outside the capital city. NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports on the community and how they're coping.

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News
2:23 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Search Continues For Nearly 300 Missing In South Korea Ferry Accident

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 6:06 pm

The search continues for survivors and answers in the South Korean ferry disaster. NPR's Anthony Kuhn offers details on the latest developments.

Asia
4:11 am
Thu April 17, 2014

Hundreds Still Missing After South Korean Ferry Capsizes

Originally published on Thu April 17, 2014 5:41 am

Strong currents and rain are hampering rescuers in the search for more than 200 passengers missing after a ferry flipped onto its side and filled with water off the southern coast of South Korea.

The Two-Way
4:31 am
Wed April 9, 2014

Google Trains Its Lenses On Cambodia's Ancient Temples

A Cambodian technician carries a backpack-mounted "Trekker" device housing 15 cameras as he demonstrates the technique used to digitally map the Angkor complex in Cambodia.
Christophe Archambault AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 9, 2014 7:39 am

Google has created a virtual trek through Cambodia's jungle temples that aims to transport cyber-travelers to a wonder of the ancient world.

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World
3:10 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Anger Boils Over For Families Of Flight 370 Passengers

Originally published on Fri March 28, 2014 4:34 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish. It's not often that an airline accident triggers street protests, but that's exactly what happened in the Chinese capital this week. On Monday, Malaysia announced that the flight, MH370, was lost at sea with no survivors. The passengers' families say that there's no evidence of this and many are convinced of a conspiracy.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports from Beijing on the families' reactions and what it says about Chinese society.

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Asia
3:14 am
Thu March 27, 2014

Panda Diplomacy: Michelle Obama Concludes Visit To China

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 10:18 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Michele Obama is back in the U.S. after a weeklong trip to China. Her tour of three Chinese cities represented a sort of diplomatic change of pace from the usual tensions between the U.S. and China, like cyber espionage and trade spats.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports the first lady's visit included ping-pong and pandas, both symbols of soft power diplomacy.

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News
2:33 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

News Of Flight 370's Suspected End Is Met With Relatives' Despair

Originally published on Mon March 24, 2014 4:46 pm

Malaysia's prime minister concluded that Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 "ended in the southern Indian Ocean," setting off howls of grief and anger among passengers' families. The search continues for debris that would confirm the flight crashed.

World
10:25 am
Mon March 24, 2014

Malaysian Prime Minister Announces Airliner Went Down

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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Parallels
4:10 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

For Flight 370 Families, Every Day Is 'Torment'

Relatives of Chinese passengers aboard the missing Malaysia Airlines flight comfort each other as they wait for a news briefing by airline officials at a hotel ballroom in Beijing on Thursday.
Andy Wong AP

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 4:20 pm

Family members of the passengers aboard Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 have grown increasingly frustrated in the nearly two weeks since the flight disappeared. Despite the efforts of airline and government officials, many relatives are angry about the lack of information. Some have even threatened to hunger strike in protest against the lack of information.

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News
2:03 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Politics And Power Complicate The Airliner Search

Originally published on Wed March 19, 2014 2:50 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. We begin this hour with the politics of a vanishing airliner. The search for Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 now covers well over 2 million square miles. Twenty-six countries are still involved, 10 days after the plane's disappearance. In a few moments, we'll hear from the U.S. Navy about their efforts.

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Asia
5:51 am
Sun March 16, 2014

Search For Malaysian Jet Turns Its Focus To The Crew

Originally published on Sun March 16, 2014 9:32 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin.

Malaysia is reaching out to dozens of countries as it expands the search for an airliner that went missing almost nine days ago. This comes after new data indicates that the plane flew for hours after it last made contact with civilian radar. But which direction it went after that point remains a mystery.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports from Beijing that despite evidence that the plane was intentionally diverted, Malaysian authorities have not said the plane was hijacked.

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Asia
2:32 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Three Years From Meltdown, Japanese Nuclear Plant Still Struggles

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:51 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Three years ago today, a massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan killed thousands of people. It also triggered the meltdown of reactors at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. The cleanup is ongoing and has been problematic, with power failures and leaks of contaminated water. And the technical difficulties involved in closing the facility are compounded by serious labor issues.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Foreign language spoken)

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Asia
3:02 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Search Goes On For Jetliner That Mysteriously Disappeared

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 7:59 am

Authorities continue to piece together scant clues as to why a Malaysia Airlines flight disappeared over the weekend. The plane was headed from Malaysia to China with 239 people aboard.

Asia
5:53 am
Sat March 8, 2014

Malaysia Airlines Flight Vanishes With 239 On Board

Originally published on Sat March 8, 2014 9:31 am

A Malaysian Airlines flight went off the radar on its flight from Kuala Lampur to Beijing with 239 people on board. Three Americans were on board, including an infant.

Asia
2:16 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Chinese Superstar Lifts Ivory Cause Onto His Shoulders

Originally published on Thu March 6, 2014 5:50 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Chinese leaders and lawmakers are huddled in Beijing for the annual session of parliament, and one man towers above the rest. That's because he's seven feet, six inches tall. The former Houston Rocket center Yao Ming is one of China's best-known athletes. He's also in his second year as a member of China's nominal Upper House of Parliament.

NPR's Anthony Kuhn has this report from Beijing on the former basketball star's foray into law and politics.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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