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Russian President Vladimir Putin has decided against expelling US diplomats in a tit-for-tat move after US President Barack Obama imposed fresh sanctions and ejected 35 Russian diplomats. Mr Putin appears to be keeping open options for better ties with US President-elect Donald Trump.
TOP OF THE NEWS
Organisers of three major New Year countdown parties in Singapore are beefing up security to ensure a safe environment for the massive crowds expected tonight. Besides having more boots on the ground, bag checks will be carried out. Partygoers are relaxed, saying the move is for their own good.
Indonesia has officially sent humanitarian aid, including food and sarongs, to the ethnic Rohingya minority in Myanmar's Rakhine state. The arrangement was on a government-to-government basis. President Joko Widodo said he hopes "the assistance of Indonesia will be well received as a demonstration of concern and solidarity".
India and Singapore have revised a deal to allow India to start imposing capital gains tax on Singapore investments from April and fully withdraw tax exemptions in two years. This applies to capital gains tax exemption for shares, enjoyed by Singapore investments there.
A costume parade in Taiwan where students wore Nazi uniforms and wielded swastika banners raised a furore on the Internet. But what the scandal really reflects is the attitude of utilitarianism that prevails on the island, says Alan Fong of The China Post.
Not all residents of Dakota Crescent who were supposed to vacate their flats by Dec 31 have moved out. Under plans to rejuvenate the area, households in 17 blocks have been allocated new rental or purchase flats.
Private security firm Certis Cisco, which recently revealed that it will be hiring 120 Taiwanese nationals as auxiliary police officers (APOs), yesterday said that it offers a higher salary package to Singaporean APOs as compared to the Taiwanese, who are being offered $2,700 a month.
The Singapore stock market ended 2016 mildly different compared with the start of the year. Its total market capitalisation grew 2 per cent to $879.4 billion from a year ago, despite a slew of high-profile delistings that have wiped out more than $15 billion in value. Meanwhile, the blue-chip Straits Times Index edged down 0.1 per cent for the year, which cloaks a rather volatile 12 months of action.
Jurgen Klopp is one of the few managers to give Pep Guardiola a run for his money, and he is eager to resume hostilities when the Spaniard's Manchester City visit Liverpool for an enticing New Year's Eve Premier League clash. Honours were even when they managed Dortmund and Bayern in the Bundesliga, and neither of their current teams can afford to slip up as they chase leaders Chelsea.
Design and lifestyle magazine Wallpaper*, which turned 20 in October, often highlights Singapore's creativity on its pages. Its editor-in-chief Tony Chambers says the city is in an exciting season of design, and its voice is confident.
Best of ST Sessions
Music correspondent Eddino Abdul Hadi paicks top five performances by home-grown acts in the video series. http://str.sg/bestsessions
Alexis-Serena love match
Who is Alexis Ohanian, the Reddit co-founder who is engaged to tennis ace Serena Williams? http://str.sg/lovematch