Good morning! Here are our top stories to kick-start your Friday, Aug 17.
Chinese bombers likely training for US strikes: Pentagon
Chinese bombers are likely training for strikes against US and allied targets in the Pacific, according to a new Pentagon report that also details how Beijing is transforming its ground forces to "fight and win."
Rules eased for SMEs bidding for public projects
Companies with yearly revenues below $5 million no longer have to produce audited financial statements to take part in government tenders, Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Chee Hong Tat said.
Review 'no air-conditioning' norm for subsidised wards?
The healthcare norms spelt out in the 1990s stipulated no air-conditioning for subsidised hospital wards as a means of checking overuse of these wards. Is it time for a rethink?
1,000 women 'fall in' for NS boot camp
Would you pay to stay in a military bunk, eat combat rations and go on a route march?
MCCY plans to woo public with Hungry Ghost Festival chatbot
Ever wanted to have an out-of-the-world experience? You can now do so by chatting with a kind "soul" online to find out more about the Hungry Ghost Festival - thanks to a chatbot created by the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth.
Hawkers welcome unified cashless payment system
In the coming months, the Singapore authorities will appoint one, or at most two, "master acquirers" to supply hawkers with systems to accept e-payments and to settle accounts with the hawkers.
Parts of Malaysia hit by unhealthy levels of haze
The haze returned to parts of Malaysia on Thursday, affecting the west coast states of Perlis, Kedah and Penang on the peninsula, and Sarawak in East Malaysia.
Vatican feels 'shame and sorrow' over US grand jury report on abuse
The Vatican vowed to hold accountable sexually abusive priests and bishops who enable them to continue to prey on minors.
Aretha Franklin, the legendary 'Queen of Soul', dies aged 76
Aretha Franklin, the preacher’s daughter whose powerful voice made her the long-reigning “Queen of Soul” with such hit songs as Respect and Chain Of Fools, died at the age of 76, officials said.
Famed Kyoto coffee chain % Arabica Coffee to open in Singapore
Coffee fans rejoice: Popular Kyoto coffee chain - % Arabica Coffee - will welcome its first store in Singapore at 56 Arab Street, the shop confirmed.