Morning Minutes: What will make headlines, Dec 21, 2015

Massive traffic jam at the Woodlands checkpoint on Dec 18, 2015.
Massive traffic jam at the Woodlands checkpoint on Dec 18, 2015. PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

Good morning! Morning Minutes is a round-up of stories that will break on Monday, Dec 20, and which we think you'd be interested in.

It appears on weekdays, available by 7am.

Addressing checkpoint congestion during holiday period

The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority will be addressing the issues and challenges in running the two land checkpoints during the year-end holiday period today (Dec 21).  Last week, heavy congestion for both vehicles and pedestrians was reported. - ZHAKI ABDULLAH

Top court to hear plea on juvenile convict in 2012 Delhi gang-rape despite release 

Indian demonstrators shout slogans during a rally in New Delhi on Dec 20, 2015, held to protest the release of the juvenile rapist convicted in the 2012 gang-rape of a 23-year-old student. PHOTO: AFP

All eyes are on India's top court, which is due to hear a plea by a women's rights group against the release of a man convicted of the horrific gang-rape of a 23-year-old woman in New Delhi on Dec 16, 2012. The man, then aged 17, was the youngest of six men who tortured and raped the woman on a moving bus in a case which shocked the world. Despite the plea being submitted a few hours before the scheduled release of the juvenile convict, the release went ahead on Sunday (Dec 20) evening. The high court judges told Reuters they could not halt the release because his sentence had complied with existing law. The woman died of her injuries in a Singapore hospital 13 days after the attack. While four of the men were convicted and sentenced to death in 2014, the youth was set to a correction home for three years on account of his youth. 

Search operations for passengers on sunken Indonesian ferry to resume

Rescue workers, police and residents prepare to unload the body of a ferry victim in Kolaka, South East Sulawesi, Indonesia on Dec 20, 2015. PHOTO: ANTARA FOTO

Search for survivors from a ferry that sank off Indonesia’s eastern island of Sulawesi, will resume with daylight today (Dec 21), Roki Asikin, head of the local rescue team, told Metro TV. So far, 37  passengers have been pulled alive from rough seas by rescuers in helicopters, fishing vessels and rubber dinghies. However, hopes are fading for the 78 people still missing, officials said. Three people have been found dead in the Gulf of Bone off South Sulawesi since the vessel with 118 on board ran into trouble on Saturday (Dec 19).

Investors watching how market moves

Local investors will be keeping a close tab on the stock market today (Dec 21) following a sharp decline on Wall Street. US stocks closed lower last Friday for the second straight day, on concerns ranging from a further weakening of crude oil prices to the prospect of higher interest rates globally in the wake of the US Federal Reserve’s rate hike last week.