The News in 5 Minutes


Downtown Line on track

THE 12 stations of Stage 2 of the Downtown Line will open in December after all, as longer construction hours and more efficient work processes made up for the time lost when a major contractor went bust in 2013. Bukit Panjang commuters’ woes will ease by then.

Zouk moving to Clarke Quay

ICONIC home-grown nightclub Zouk has secured a new 30,000 sq ft home at Clarke Quay, formerly occupied by lifestyle group LifeBrandz. The club aims to start operations in the new space by next June at the earliest.


ISIS threat in S-E Asia

THE latest US State Department-issued Country Reports on Terrorism said that while Asia has continued to “weaken the ability of terrorist groups”, countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines still face challenges dealing with terrorism. Chief of these worries is the growing threat of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria militant group in the region.

Govt intervention wanted

AFTER a spate of cases in Malaysia where dress codes apparently based on Islamic values were strictly enforced at government buildings, former civil servants and lawyers have called on the government to stop the moral policing.

Speaking out against the rise of intolerance among some Muslims, they said these people should not impose their values on Malaysians of other faiths.

Signing of AIIB charter

DETAILS of the new China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank will be made clearer today, as the bank’s 57 founding members are set to sign a document outlining its governance.

However, some key questions that could determine the success of the new international bank, such as its direction, remain unanswered.

Movies raise eco fears

AUSTRALIA is growing concerned over how movie sets might impact its pristine landscapes, adopting more stringent guidelines to prevent environmental degradation. The issue arose after the release of Mad Max: Fury Road, which was criticised for damaging the Namibian desert eco-system.


Caliphate of fear

On the first anniversary of the declaration of a caliphate by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, countries must come together to resist the group’s violent rise. They could begin by warning their citizens against the siren calls of a new militarism.

Rethink sanctions use

SANCTIONS against other states are being used too easily by Western governments because of their influence over global financial systems. But sanctions should not be the first resort, says Europe correspondent Jonathan Eyal.



Bid to add fizz to sales

SOME retailers and coffee shops are selling alcohol-free beer to ease the impact of curbs on alcohol sales that took effect in April. But response to these beers has been lukewarm so far.

Post on Legoland a hoax

LEGOLAND Malaysia has received calls from parents recently over a story on social media about a boy who went missing at a Legoland and was later found with his appearance changed. The theme park has clarified that the story is a hoax.

Mobile column is back

THE mobile column returns to this year’s National Day Parade after five years and will have its most diverse line-up ever, with 26 types of new vehicles. A total of 177 vehicles will be on show this year.


Taxman curbs abuse

THE Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore has clawed back million of dollars from various companies that made fraudulent claims to take advantage of a scheme offering tax breaks for investments that boost productivity.


Fencers outpoint Viets

THE Singapore women’s sabre team came from 36-40 down in the last round to edge out SEA Games gold medallists Vietnam 45-44 to clinch fifth place, their best finish in the Asian Fencing Championships. South Korea beat China 45-34 for gold.

In men’s epee, world No. 18 Kazakhstan stunned No. 2 South Korea 45-37 in the semi-finals, before beating China 45-43 in the final. The Singapore men, fencing on home ground, lost to Iran 31-45 to settle for 12th place.

SEA Games champs
Lin Ye (left) and
Zhou Yihan.

Blocked by Great Wall

THEY were full of youthful exuberance but eventually Lin Ye and Zhou Yihan ran into the defensive wall of their Chinese rivals Liu Fei and Wu Yang.

The Singaporean paddlers lost 1-3 in the Japan Open women’s doubles final.


Subtle Singapore

SINGAPORE Inside Out, the three-city tour of Singapore art and design, wrapped up its gig in London yesterday.

The project eschewed the usual prestige-venue format of showcase after showcase.

Instead, cultural diplomacy – working from the ground up with local partners, forging word-of-mouth connections and singling out the quirky – ruled the day.

Musical dream team

RECORD label founder Ruth Ling has assembled a dream team of top local musicians for an album called Sing, Love.

The tribute to Singapore features, among others, xinyao pioneer Liang Wern Fook, jazz maestro Jeremy Monteiroand Mandopop queen Stefanie Sun.


Brand new look

The Straits Times’ new look will span both print and digital platforms. Look out for new features on our website, mobile and tablet apps.

Among the highlights are a new metered paywall, and a cleaner and brighter web design that is mobile friendly.

More details at

Remember to update your smartphone and tablet apps on Wednesday to enjoy all the new features.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 29, 2015, with the headline 'The News in 5 Minutes'. Print Edition | Subscribe