10 must-reads for today

A firefighter emerging from a cloud of smoke while battling the Kincade fire in Healdsburg, California, on Sunday.
A firefighter emerging from a cloud of smoke while battling the Kincade fire in Healdsburg, California, on Sunday.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
Mr Lee Cho Poon.

1 California emergency

Fuelled by powerful winds, the massive Kincade fire continued its march across Sonoma County, California. Governor Gavin Newsom declared a statewide emergency on Sunday as wildfires spread throughout the state, burning tens of thousands of acres and forcing evacuations of more than 180,000 people.

2 Brexit deadline extended

With just three days left until Britain is scheduled to leave the European Union, the bloc will extend the deadline by three months, to Jan 31, one of its leaders said yesterday. President Donald Tusk of the European Council said in a Twitter post that leaders of the 27 other EU countries had agreed to the postponement.

3 CCP elite begin key meeting

Chinese Communist Party (CCP) elite kicked off a key meeting in Beijing yesterday, as the country's leadership faces pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, a protracted trade war with the United States and a slowing economy. The meeting is where high-ranking officials discuss the country's road map.

4 Thais plan to appeal to US

Thailand plans to appeal the upcoming suspension by the United States of trade benefits it had granted the country, a senior government official said yesterday. It was announced last Friday that President Donald Trump will suspend US$1.3 billion (S$1.7 billion) in trade preferences for Thailand due to its failure to address worker rights.

5 China's Himalayan goal

China has ambitions to breach the great geographic barrier that is the Himalayas via road and rail projects, the most recent with Nepal. Mountains and India stand in the way of its goal, says Dr C. Raja Mohan.

6 Caregiver extraordinaire

He is 83 years old and has retired, but Mr Lee Cho Poon (in red) opened his one-room rental flat to three other elderly housemates separately. He fed, clothed and bathed them on the little savings he had, and even arranged the last rites for two who died. Mr Lee won the Singapore Patient Caregiver Award given out by Tan Tock Seng Hospital last Friday.

7 Agents' practices debated

News that a property agent was heavily fined and suspended for faking offers in a property transaction to get a bigger commission for himself has triggered a debate on the practices of property agents, who may not collect commissions from a seller and buyer in the same transaction.

8 LVMH eyes Tiffany & Co

LVMH, the world's biggest luxury group, has approached Tiffany & Co about a possible takeover of the United States jeweller. The proposed offer, according to sources, values Tiffany at about US$120 (S$163) per share or equivalent to a US$14.5 billion acquisition offer.

9 TKD fighters train in peace

A huge weight has been lifted off the shoulders of national taekwondo captain Raja Zulfadli Raja Mahmod and six teammates ahead of the SEA Games. They can train properly with the Singapore National Olympic Council's major Games preparation committee overseeing matters despite the Singapore Taekwondo Federation's suspension.

10 Horror writer fears dogs

Horror writer Tunku Halim, who has been hailed as Malaysia's Stephen King, admits to having cynophobia, or a fear of dogs. Halim, who will take part in the upcoming Singapore Writers Festival, says he is afraid of not just big dogs but also cute little poodles.

Straits Times Digital


Inside the Istana: An immersive guide

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World leaders react to Baghdadi's death

Fugitive ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi died in a US military raid in Syria,

US President Donald Trump announced on Sunday. Here's how other world leaders reacted to the news. str.sg/blurb25

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 29, 2019, with the headline '10 must-reads for today'. Print Edition | Subscribe