What's News: April 4, 2016

BBC TV drama Sherlock stars Martin Freeman (left) as Dr John Watson and Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes.
BBC TV drama Sherlock stars Martin Freeman (left) as Dr John Watson and Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes.PHOTO: BBC


Vietnam seizes Chinese ship

Vietnam has seized a Chinese ship with three people on board that was ferrying diesel to fishing vessels illegally in its waters, amid heightened tensions over the South China Sea. Meanwhile, a Japanese submarine and two destroyers docked in the Philippines yesterday for a training exercise. 


Strong national identity 'key'

Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Chan Chun Sing has called on young people to think of what they can do to make the country better, and not ask for more help. Whether Singapore can make it to SG100, he said, depends on whether citizens have a sense of national identity.

Chinese soldiers patrolling on Woody Island in January. PHOTO: REUTERS


Hainan's rising importance

Devoid of inhabitants and civilian facilities for decades, Woody Island underwent a transformation from 2012 after China moved to solidify its claim over the biggest island of the disputed Paracels in the South China Sea. This rapid development has shone a spotlight on the country's southern-most province of Hainan, which has been dubbed the "tip of the naval spear vital to China's projection of power".


For the love of Sherlock

British actor Benedict Cumberbatch has been hot stuff since he started playing the titular sleuth on BBC TV drama Sherlock in 2010. What if he becomes too expensive or busy to play Sherlock? The show's co-creators and writers, Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat, say Cumberbatch is already too expensive but he returns to the show because he loves it. 


Indonesian military's roles

Indonesia's military accounts for the lion's share of forces involved in anti-terror operations in the nation. But new research shows it is making its real mark in the lives of ordinary citizens through forest fire-fighting and other initiatives, though this has not been without controversy.


Overreaction to terror threat?

More people die falling in bathtubs than from terror attacks, US leader Barack Obama is said to have told his staff. Is the public overreacting to the terrorist threat? Not so, says Jonathan Eyal. People react more to deaths from one incident than those spread over many episodes.


64-year-old's North Pole bid

A 64-year-old mother of two will be running in the North Pole Marathon on Saturday, in her second attempt. Since her first marathon in 2007, Ms Gloria Lau has run in about 20 marathons in over a dozen countries. 


NUS admissions: Wider net cast

The National University of Singapore (NUS) interviewed a record 1,600 students for discretionary admissions last year, eventually taking in 670 of them, or the maximum 10 per cent of the 2015 cohort. NUS said looking at students' talents and not just grades has helped to inject diversity. 


Gem investors left in the lurch

Customers of Asia Fine Diamonds (AFD) have learnt the hard way that diamonds are not their best friend when it comes to investment. One of them, Mr Stephen Yeo, 55, invested $17,785.12 in a 0.21-carat round cut diamond - described as "fancy intense purplish pink" - from AFD, but he never laid hands on it. 


Top EPL clubs deny drug use

English Premier League (EPL) leaders Leicester City, outgoing champions Chelsea and Arsenal have slammed a report that a doctor who gave out banned substances treated their players. Dr Mark Bonar was secretly filmed talking about providing professional athletes with performance-boosting drugs.



Thrones birthday boy

Game Of Thrones actor Isaac Hempstead Wright (photo), who turns 17 on April 9, enjoyed a birthday celebration with Singapore fans. When he told fans he wanted to try local food, they suggested laksa, satay and durian. HBO Asia held the fan meeting to promote Season 6 of the hit television series, which premieres on April 25. 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 04, 2016, with the headline 'What'sNews'. Print Edition | Subscribe