Morning Briefing: Top stories from The Straits Times on Jan 4

Good morning! Here are our top stories to kick-start your Saturday, Jan 4.

8 offenders caught in 3 days as LTA enforces e-scooter ban on footpaths

LTA enforcement officers and auxiliary police officers advising a PMD user on where he can ride his device at the junction near AMK Hub on Jan 2, 2020. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

The errant e-scooter users were caught in areas such as Ang Mo Kio, Commonwealth, Serangoon, Telok Blangah, West Coast and Woodlands, the Land Transport Authority said.


Wrong body cremated after funeral home mix-up

Family members of Mr Kee Kin Tiong, 82, told The Straits Times they were in "great pain" over the mix-up. ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN

To add to the family's distress, the send-off was done according to Christian traditions and funeral rites, when the man was a Taoist.


Lessons from Sars will help Singapore tackle virus from China

A thermal scanner at an aerobridge in Changi Airport monitoring the temperature of air travellers arriving from Mers-affected Middle Eastern countries in May 2014. PHOTO: ST FILE

The Ministry of Health and infectious-disease doctors are closely monitoring the situation in China.


Four opposition parties including SingFirst and Reform Party to form alliance for general election

The Straits Times understands that the new alliance will be led by Singaporeans First party secretary-general Tan Jee Say, and plans to field about 30 candidates in the election. PHOTO: ST FILE

The move would see the crowded field of 11 opposition parties - the largest number since independence - shrink to eight, reducing the likelihood of three-cornered fights.


Soleimani was planning attacks on Americans; Trump had to stop him, says US special envoy for Iran

Brian Hook testifies during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on US-Iran policy in October 2019 in Washington. PHOTO: AFP

The aftermath of the strike reverberated through Washington, with stocks down and oil prices up, and analysts warning of the danger of a plunge into war.


As flood risks grow, capital city needs to restore and manage ecosystem

Residents of Bekasi, in eastern Jakarta, returned home to mud and debris as the flood waters receded. PHOTO: AP

What is needed is action to restore the ecosystem and for everyone, not only the government, to work together to control floods, said an analyst.


No need to avoid visiting Wuhan but take precautions amid pneumonia outbreak, say Singapore experts

A thermal scanner set up at Changi Airport for incoming Wuhan flights. Travellers have been advised to take precautions, including avoiding contact with live animals and with people who show signs of illness. PHOTO: ST READER

As of Friday morning, 44 patients had been hit by the mysterious flu-like virus of "unknown origin", of which 11 were critically ill.


IB results: Singapore wins big with 35 out of 69 perfect scorers globally

Music had been Farrah Adystyaning Dewanti's main passion since she began playing the violin at the age of six but she developed an interest in chemistry after conducting experiments as part of the IB internal assessments in Sota. ST PHOTO: KELLY HUI

Of the 2,250 students in Singapore who took the exams, 96.66 per cent passed. The global pass rate was 70.03 per cent, while the rate for the Asia-Pacific region was 87.76 per cent.


'We did not donate but returned them to where they belong', says Briton who hands 2 colonial flags back to Singapore

(From left) Senior Minister of State for Defence and Foreign Affairs Maliki Osman and the family of the late Lt-Col Geoffrey Sherman, son Nicholas Sherman and daughter-in-law Rosemary Sherman, viewing two flags in the Old Tanglin Officer's Mess at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Jan 3, 2020. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

For the Sherman family, it was a painful but necessary act of remembrance of father and daughter; for Singapore, it was a reunion with two important artefacts of its wartime heritage.


States Times Review's application to cancel Pofma order rejected; SDP files separate application

A screenshot of the corrections and clarifications regarding falsehoods posted by States Times Review on Facebook. PHOTO: GOV.SG

The ministry added that Mr Alex Tan, the website's administrator, has been informed of the rejection. Separately, the ministry said it has received the SDP's application and is assessing it.