Top stories from The Straits Times on Sunday, Dec 16

Global action plan to limit global warming adopted by almost 200 nations after marathon talks

Mr Albert Chua, permanent secretary for the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources(left); Mr Cheah Sin Liang, deputy director of international policy at the National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS); Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Masagos Zulkifli; Mr Benedict Chia, director of strategic issues at NCCS; Mr Joseph Teo, chief climate change negotiator for Singapore, Mewr; and the rest of the Singapore delegation. ST PHOTO: AUDREY TAN

A global action plan to deal with climate change was adopted by almost 200 nations on Saturday night, a day after talks were scheduled to conclude, following a two-week marathon involving delegates spending days and nights poring over the fine print.


More Normal stream students going for diplomas, degrees

Mr Pawandeep Singh Sekhon was posted to the N(T) track but has now secured a spot to study at NUS.
Mr Pawandeep Singh Sekhon was posted to the N(T) track but has now secured a spot to study at NUS. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

More students from the Normal streams in secondary school have made the cut for higher education in the last decade.


50 years of flying high: Singapore Girl - Here to stay

The iconic Singapore Girl in her timeless sarong kebaya uniform. PHOTO: SIA

When her supervisor asked to see her, stewardess See Biew Wah did not think much of it, until she saw renowned French couturier Pierre Balmain in the room.


Veteran orchid breeder 'Uncle David' dies aged 73

Mr David Lim, a highly respected mentor for staff at the Singapore Botanic Gardens and the National Orchid Garden, died on Dec 13, 2018. Among the veteran orchid breeder's most outstanding hybrids are the Aranda Lee Kuan Yew (pictured). PHOTO: NPARKS

The veteran botanist David Lim - "Uncle David" to his many admirers - who brought life into many new orchid hybrids here has died.


National service vital as security becomes more complex: Halimah Yacob

President Halimah Yacob, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen and Chief of Defence Force Melvyn Ong reviews the 111/18 Officer Cadet Commissioning Parade at SAFTI Military Institute on Dec 15, 2018. ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

National service is important, especially as the security landscape becomes more complex, said President Halimah Yacob.


It Changed My Life: Once a homeless teen, now a youth leader

Miss Mastura also started the Interfaith Youth Circle to build bridges between people from different faiths. With her earlier hardships behind her, Miss Siti Noor Mastura became a flight attendant and started seeing the world. But she never forgot th
With her earlier hardships behind her, Miss Siti Noor Mastura became a flight attendant and started seeing the world. But she never forgot the poverty which once shackled her, so she started two initiatives - a food distribution programme called Back2Basics and an interfaith programme. Over time, Back2Basics grew organically and now helps more than 50 families. ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG

Siti Noor Mastura's experiences spurred her to start two organisations: one to feed the poor, the other to build bridges between communities from different faiths.


Case of Anthony Ler: Victim Annie Leong’s mum not bitter, says family friend

Madam Annie Leong was stabbed multiple times outside the lift, seen in a photo taken last week, on the fourth floor of the Housing Board flat in Hougang on May 14, 2001. ST PHOTO: JOYCE LIM

For the last 17 years, Madam Chin Chooi Ling has taken the same lift and walked down the same Housing Board corridor to her flat.  long-time residents of the block said Madam Chin has lived there for over 20 years with her husband and son.


Trump's torrid week a signal for yet more turbulence ahead

For Democrats the President threw a temper tantrum. But for his supporters, this was the authentic, passionate, transparent man they had voted for. PHOTO: REUTERS

The meeting in the Oval Office was vintage Donald Trump - a bold gamble played in front of live TV cameras, leaving political pundits reeling.


More details emerge of Huawei heir Meng Wanzhou's husband, personal life

Ms Meng Wanzhou (right), greets people delivering flowers to her home in Vancouver last Wednesday after she was released on bail. She lives in Shenzhen, but also has two homes in Canada and a duplex in Hong Kong. PHOTO: AFP

Ms Meng Wanzhou married Mr Liu Xiaozong, also known as Carlos Liu, in 2007, according to a Hong Kong marriage certificate produced in court during her bail hearing.


The 2018 Life Power List: Top 10 names in Singapore's entertainment, lifestyle and arts scene

(Clockwise from top left) Writer and producer Kevin Kwan, Raffles Hotel Singapore, sociologist Teo You Yenn and ShopBack founders Henry Chan and Joel Leong. PHOTOS: AFP, RAFFLES HOTEL SINGAPORE, ETHOS BOOKS, JONATHAN CHOO

And top of the heap is Singapore-born Crazy Rich Asians author Kevin Kwan, whose bestseller spawned the highest-grossing romantic comedy of the last decade. Find out who else shook up the arts, entertainment and lifestyle scenes here this year.