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Fear gripped Asian markets yesterday, with Tokyo taking a beating as investors dumped stocks in search of safe havens. The benchmark Nikkei 225 dived 4.8 per cent to round out its worst week since 2008. The trigger was a sharp strengthening of the yen to 16-month highs against the US dollar as investors flocked to bonds and gold.
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World powers have agreed on an ambitious plan to cease hostilities in Syria within a week and ramp up humanitarian access. If executed, the agreement, would mark the first sustained and formally declared halt to fighting in Syria since the civil war began in 2011.
Malaysian police said they have smashed major drug rings masterminded by Nigerians and Iranians, halting a six-year reign in the country by these syndicates with the arrest of 1,280 suspects. Some 30 drug gangs from the two dominant nationalities were broken up between 2010 and last year, with 45 "drug lords" nabbed.
South Korea could begin detailed discussions with Washington as early as next week on bringing in an advanced US missile defence system, after North Korea's rocket launch and its fourth nuclear test on Jan 6. But China and Russia say this could trigger an arms race.
US President Barack Obama hosts Asean leaders to a historic summit on Monday and Professor Tommy Koh sets out his hopes that the meeting will institutionalise US-Asean ties in a way that will endure no matter who becomes the next US president.
A salesman who posed as a lawyer to trick over 20 property buyers, misappropriating nearly $1.8 million, was jailed for seven years and two months. Sim Tee Peng, 39, received an extra 12 weeks' jail for forging stamp duty certificates.
Ten people prosecuted for abusing a goods and services tax tourist refund scheme over the past five years had tried to cheat the taxman of $334,000, said the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore. They included Singapore citizens and permanent residents, as well as Indian and Filipino nationals.
Gold is making a comeback as stock market turbulence across the world drives investors into safe havens, triggering a gold rush.
The yellow metal has been the best performing commodity this year so far, shooting up 17 per cent this year to US$1,242.16 an ounce as at 8pm yesterday.
With a never-say-die attitude, Khairul Anwar and his band of merry men captivated crowds at the National Stadium on their way to an unlikely bronze medal at the Asean Para Games. Now the cerebral palsy football captain is in line for the Straits Times Athlete of the Year award.
Zombies have acquired a bad reputation over the years, often portrayed as soulless ghouls with an insatiable craving for human flesh. The television show iZombie, on the other hand, has an attractive, well-intentioned and crime-solving zombie as its heroine, Liv Moore.
Rose McIver, the New Zealand actress who plays her, says the character has become an unlikely role model for many fans.