What's News: May 12, 2018


King agrees to pardon Anwar

The Malaysian King, Sultan Muhammad V, has agreed to grant jailed leader Anwar Ibrahim a full and immediate pardon, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has said. A pardon will enable Datuk Seri Anwar to contest a by-election, become an MP and get in the frame for the prime minister's post.


Parking warden held under ISA

A Singaporean parking warden radicalised by divisive teachings online was detained last month under the Internal Security Act (ISA). The Home Affairs Ministry said Mohamed Faishal Mohd Razali, 27, wanted to undertake armed violence overseas in various conflict zones, including Syria.

Policemen patrolling Indonesia's Police Mobile Brigade headquarters in Depok. PHOTO: REUTERS


Security upped at siege site

Indonesian police are stepping up checks around the country's Police Mobile Brigade headquarters, which has a detention facility, after receiving alerts that militants are heading to the facility, which saw a dramatic two-day siege this week. The heightened security comes after a militant killed a police intelligence officer near the detention centre.


Retirees to go for US Embassy

For 450 immigrants in a retirement home south of Jerusalem, the opening of a new American Embassy next door spells trouble. Israel's Immigration Ministry, which operates the home, has to vacate the property by June 2020 to make way for embassy offices.


Mahathir's major challenges

Malaysia's new Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and his Pakatan Harapan allies now have to deal with major challenges, not least how to make their unlikely coalition work effectively, says Joseph Chinyong Liow of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies.


Train reliability improving

Rail reliability data by the Land Transport Authority showed that in the first quarter of the year, the MRT network clocked 555,000 train-km before a delay of five minutes or more occurred. This was three times the restated end-2017 figure of 182,000 train-km.


New diploma for teaching kids

The new National Institute of Early Childhood Development will offer a diploma in early childhood development and education for pre-school teachers. The course will give a deeper understanding of the early childhood development needs of a wide age range.


Improving corporate services

New mandatory training and proficiency tests are being imposed to raise standards of corporate service providers to protect Singapore's reputation as a trusted business hub. These providers perform services such as setting up companies, corporate secretarial work and statutory filing of documents with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority.


National paddler retires at 25

National paddler Pang Xuejie, 25, is retiring from table tennis because he believes it is the right time to set up his own "blockchain-related company". He made his national debut at 18 and represented Singapore at the South-east Asia, Commonwealth and Asian games, as well as at the World Championships.



New uses for recycling

A new mobile trash recycling and manufacturing plant called the Trashpresso turns plastic bottles and fabric waste into construction tiles. It was created by Mr Arthur Huang (above), the founder of Taiwan-based upcycling company Miniwiz, and Hong Kong action star Jackie Chan.


Paint like a master

Journalist Olivia Ho takes up the challenge of learning traditional Chinese brush painting from master painter Tan Khim Ser. Here is your chance to do it too. https://str.sg/STpainting


Her ode to mum

Vivian Goh turns 38 this Mother's Day, and she says she has her mother to thank. Diagnosed with a neuromuscular condition as a toddler, she was not expected to live past the age of 12. https://str.sg/odetomum

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 12, 2018, with the headline 'What's News'. Print Edition | Subscribe