What's News: July 16, 2015

PM Lee Hsien Loong opens the ST170 exhibition at the ArtScience Museum.
PM Lee Hsien Loong opens the ST170 exhibition at the ArtScience Museum.ST PHOTO: STEPHANIE YEOW


ST marks 170th anniversary

The Straits Times yesterday celebrated its 170th birthday with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who launched the ST170 exhibition at the ArtScience Museum. He noted the newspaper's important role in helping readers make sense of developments around them and its part in the Singapore story.


Test of US-Israel ties

The US may have made a landmark deal to check Iran's nuclear efforts, but President Barack Obama must now persuade Congress as well as Middle East allies that it is a good idea. The deal will also likely be seen as a test of US ties with Israel and the Arab world.


Unearthing Pluto's secrets

Nasa's New Horizons spacecraft successfully performed its tasks yesterday, bringing information to Earth about little-known Pluto in unprecedented detail - and making the United States the only nation to have visited every planet in the classical solar system.



People gave generously, especially to the social welfare sector, spurred by the Government’s pledge to match donations. ST FILE PHOTO


Tax-deductible donations soar

Tax-deductible donations to charity hit $1.1 billion last year, the highest in at least 16 years. The Commissioner of Charities said donors were motivated by the Government matching their gifts dollar for dollar. The social welfare sector got the lion's share of donations.


Commuters more gracious

Bus and train commuters are more gracious now, according to the latest Commuter Graciousness Index.The graciousness level last year was 61.3 per cent, up from 42 per cent the year before.


Game-changing commute

To many cyclists, it looks like the Government is finally heading in the right direction on making cycling a viable mode of commute, with plans to study how to make the Kallang Park Connector seamless. The Bishan-to-city bike route could just be a game changer, as a Taipei scheme shows, says Danson Cheong.


Private home sales down 42%

Sales of new private homes suffered a sharp decline last month amid the absence of new launches and a mid-year holiday lull.

Developers sold 375 units, about 42 per cent down on May. Last month's sales figure was also lower than June last year.


S'pore's diving coach leaving

Just over a month after Singapore's diving team scored its best SEA Games medal haul of three silvers and four bronzes, head coach Xu Jie is not renewing his contract. The Canadian national, here since 2011, is set to return to be with his family, and will leave in mid-August.


Big-screen debut for Taufik

Singer Taufik Batisah is playing a witch doctor in his big-screen debut in Malaysian comedy film Dukun Doktor Dani, set to be released next year. With the role, the winner of the Singapore Idol competition in 2004 could follow in the footsteps of fellow Singaporeans Aaron Aziz and Adi Putra, who have become marquee names in the Malaysian film industry.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 16, 2015, with the headline 'What's News: July 16, 2015'. Print Edition | Subscribe