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Singapore does not exploit WTO provisions for developing nations

WASHINGTON – US President Donald Trump has taken aim at rich countries, including China and Singapore, that he said are unfairly taking advantage of their self-declared status as “developing countries” to gain preferential treatment in the World Trade Organisation (WTO). In response, Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) said yesterday that it does not […]

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DPM Heng rebuts Tan Cheng Bock: PAP takes governance very seriously

The People’s Action Party takes governance and governing Singapore very seriously and has always worked hard to improve the lives of Singaporeans, said Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat yesterday as he rebutted the assertion by Progress Singapore Party (PSP) leader Tan Cheng Bock that the ruling party had lost its way. “We fundamentally disagree […]

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No better system than meritocracy, but things can improve: Ong Ye Kung

Although faith in meritocracy is weakening, Education Minister Ong Ye Kung says the ideology will remain a key principle for recognising individuals in Singapore. Speaking at the Raffles Institution’s (RI) 196th Founder’s Day ceremony yesterday, Mr Ong stressed that though meritocracy is “under siege”, it has not failed. In the last few years, meritocracy in […]

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4G team focused on more than current challenges

Singapore’s fourth-generation political leaders are focused not just on helping Singaporeans overcome the current economic challenges, but on strengthening the foundation for the economy in the next five to 10 years, said Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing. “The world is changing very fast. Technology is changing, supply chains are being reorganised, and we […]

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Police and activists clash in Hong Kong street battles

Riot police fired tear gas and demonstrators hurled rocks and bottles in street battles yesterday in the New Territories town of Yuen Long, in the latest violent protest in Hong Kong. More unrest is feared today with another protest planned in Central on Hong Kong Island. Thousands of black-clad activists, many wearing face masks and […]

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Hong Kong police caught in a quandary

Since June 9, Hong Kong’s embattled police force has been tested to the hilt, caught between a hostile public and the city’s pro-Beijing government. Protests that started out peacefully have escalated into heated confrontations that stretched late into the night, and violent clashes have grown in scale with each march. Please subscribe or log in […]

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Swimming: I like being challenged, I have full faith in myself, says Joseph Schooling despite world c’ships flop

Do not tell Joseph Schooling that he does not belong among the best in the world. Even after enduring his worst outing at last week’s Fina World Championships, where the Singaporean swimmer returned home empty-handed for the first time since his debut at the 2013 edition in Barcelona, Schooling does not believe that. Please subscribe […]

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Two locals dead, athletes injured in S. Korea nightclub balcony collapse

GWANGJU • Two South Koreans were killed and several athletes competing in the swimming world championships were injured early yesterday when a balcony collapsed inside a nightclub in Gwangju, according to local media. The authorities suspect the balcony inside the nightclub, which is located near the athletes’ village, may have collapsed due to too much […]

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More S’pore residents to pay less for healthcare

By October, more people here will qualify for healthcare subsidies, and many of those who are already entitled to pay less will get additional help to offset their medical expenses. At least 365,000 Singapore residents will enjoy more healthcare subsidies after the Health Ministry’s revision of income eligibility criteria for various schemes, ranging from basic […]

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Street battles with police in HK

Black-clad protesters fought street battles with riot police in Hong Kong yesterday during a protest in retaliation for an attack by suspected triad gangs on activists and commuters last Sunday. Defying a police ban, thousands of protesters gathered near Yuen Long MTR station in the New Territories where last week’s attack occurred. Some protesters set […]

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Singapore lawyer verifies Sultan of Kelantan’s divorce from Russian ex-beauty queen

Even as former Russian beauty queen Oksana Voevodina insists she remains married to the Sultan of Kelantan, his Singapore lawyer has confirmed the split. Lawyer Koh Tien Hua told The Sunday Times that Sultan Muhammad V had divorced her last month by three talaqs in the presence of two competent Muslim witnesses. The traditional Islamic […]

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HK actor Simon Yam stabbed on stage in China

Hong Kong actor Simon Yam is recovering in hospital after undergoing surgery following a brazen stabbing incident yesterday during a promotional event in the southern Chinese city of Zhongshan. According to his management company, he suffered minor damage to his internal organs and four fingers on his right hand but is now in a stable […]

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UK expresses ‘extreme disappointment’ over oil-tanker seizure

TEHERAN • Iran has taken a British-flagged oil tanker seized in the Strait of Hormuz to a nearby port, Iran’s Fars news agency said yesterday, as Britain’s Foreign Secretary voiced “extreme disappointment” at Teheran’s behaviour. In a tweet, Mr Jeremy Hunt said he had spoken to his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif “and expressed extreme disappointment […]

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Saudi King approves hosting US troops

RIYADH • Saudi Arabia’s King Salman approved hosting US forces in the country to boost regional security and stability, the state news agency SPA reported on Friday. The US Defence Department confirmed the move in a statement, saying it would deploy troops and resources to Saudi Arabia to “provide an additional deterrent” in the face […]

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What now for PKR – retreat or escalation?

The sea was calm in Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s constituency of Port Dickson but his Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) was in stormy waters ahead of its weekend leadership retreat in the beach resort town. The party has been in turmoil since viral videos allegedly of deputy party president Azmin Ali involved in gay sex were […]

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Malaysians fed up with endless bickering in Parti Keadilan Rakyat

PETALING JAYA • While the rift between the two top leaders of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) continues to dominate headlines, many Malaysians are generally fed up with the whole affair. They have taken to social media to voice their disappointment at the endless politicking between Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and Datuk Seri Azmin Ali and […]

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Focus on people’s needs, not self-interest: Mahathir

SERDANG (Selangor) • Malaysian leaders should fight to improve the lot of voters and not for their personal interest or high positions, said Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad yesterday. “We do not fight for our own interests, but we fight for race, religion and the country, so when we succeed, we will be looked upon highly […]

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NUS, NTU and three mega churches are Singapore’s largest charities with business units

Half of Singapore’s 10 largest charities by donations collected have business subsidiaries, a practice which has drawn a reminder from the charities watchdog that charities should keep the relationships at arm’s length. A check by The Sunday Times found these charities with business subsidiaries to be the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University […]

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Singapore’s full-year growth could be lower than forecast: MTI

Singapore’s full-year economic forecast could be cut again in view of the weak performance in the second quarter and strong headwinds in the global economy, the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) has told The Sunday Times. The forecast stands at between 1.5 per cent and 2.5 per cent, and may be downgraded further. Please […]

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Tensions soar as Iran seizes UK tanker

TEHERAN • The British government is stepping up pressure on Iran to release a British oil tanker seized in the Strait of Hormuz, an incident that sent tension soaring in one of the world’s critical energy choke points. The United Kingdom has demanded the immediate release of the Stena Impero and yesterday summoned Iran’s charge […]

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Hong Kong’s celebrities take sides in extradition Bill protests

HONG KONG • Hong Kong’s controversial extradition Bill has polarised society, but it is not just ordinary folk who are taking to the streets – the city’s film and TV stars and singers have spoken up both for and against those protesting against the legislation. But speaking out has come at a price. Some celebrities […]

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Hong Kong protests: Anger over ‘dancing aunties’ sparks fresh clashes with police

HONG KONG • Renewed confrontations broke out between police and protesters in Hong Kong yesterday evening – this time sparked by pent-up anger over “dancing aunties” who have long vexed local residents near the border with the Chinese mainland. In the latest flashpoint with the authorities, some 2,000 protesters blocked roads and chanted slogans at […]

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Deep anger in Hong Kong behind defacing of city emblem

HONG KONG • Of all the dramatic visuals to emerge from the protests that have rocked Hong Kong in recent weeks, one stands out: the defaced city emblem left by demonstrators who stormed the legislature on July 1. The image of Hong Kong’s iconic bauhinia flower covered in black paint has become a symbol of […]

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Singapore luxury units see more interest from foreigners

Political and social tensions in the region are sparking renewed interest from ultra-high-net-worth foreign investors for luxury apartments in prime districts here, List Sotheby’s International Realty (List SIR) said. Wealthy residents of Hong Kong, which has been roiled in recent weeks by the worst social unrest since the former British colony returned to Chinese rule, […]

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Drones: Boon or bane?

Drone sightings are not common at Changi Airport, so when one showed up unannounced on the night of June 18, there were serious concerns. First spotted from the ground, it was flying over Changi Beach. The control tower was immediately alerted. Please subscribe or log in to continue reading the full article. Learn more about […]

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Two arrested over ‘fish-bombing’ deaths in Sabah

KOTA KINABALU • Malaysian police have launched a manhunt for those involved in the deaths of three divers in waters off Pulau Kalapuan in Sabah’s diving haven of Semporna. They have so far arrested a 24-year-old boatman and a 23-year-old guide in the incident, in which the trio were believed to have died on Friday […]

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Call for public to do more in dengue fight as infections rise

Singapore’s dengue problem will get worse before it gets better, as the coming dry, hot months are prime breeding season for the dengue-spreading mosquito, the National Environment Agency’s (NEA) director-general of public health has warned. More than 6,600 people have caught dengue fever this year, exceeding the total number for both 2017 and 2018. Mr […]

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Biggest quake to hit S. California since 1999

RIDGECREST • Emergency officials and jittery residents in the high desert of Southern California braced themselves for potentially dangerous aftershocks from a major earthquake that damaged buildings, ruptured gas lines and sparked fires near the remote epicentre of the temblor. The powerful magnitude-7.1 tremor rocked the Mojave Desert town of Ridgecrest south of the Death […]

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California declares state of emergency after quakes

RIDGECREST • The authorities have declared a state of emergency in Southern California’s San Bernardino County, as seismologists expect more aftershocks to follow two powerful quakes that shook the region in just two days. The proclamation, issued yesterday by California Governor Gavin Newsom, will give local agencies more access to resources that can help address […]

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An Instapeek into royal life in Malaysia

Former Miss Moscow Oksana Voevodina has gone public on Instagram about her life as the Sultan of Kelantan’s royal consort, confirming speculation last year that the then King of Malaysia had taken a Russian wife. Taking the name Rihana Oksana Petra, the 25-year-old has amassed nearly 300,000 followers since she began posting last month. Her […]