While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Oct 18

European Union's leaders take part in a EU Summit in Brussels on Oct 17, 2018.
European Union's leaders take part in a EU Summit in Brussels on Oct 17, 2018. PHOTO: AFP

Theresa May presses EU on Brexit but offers no new plans

British Prime Minister Theresa May said Wednesday (Oct 17) that "now is the time" to make a Brexit deal happen, but officials said she failed to offer new proposals to break the impasse at a crucial Brussels summit.

May pitched her vision of how to save the talks to European Union leaders left frustrated by a dramatic breakdown in negotiations on Sunday (Oct 14), just months before Brexit day on March 29.

Antonio Tajani, the president of the European Parliament who heard the speech, said May offered them "nothing substantially new" to discuss when they retired for dinner afterwards without her.

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DPM Teo Chee Hean calls on Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu 

Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday (Oct 17).

During their talks, both leaders reaffirmed the strong bilateral cooperation between the two countries in areas such as security, education, research and development, and technical cooperation, and discussed ways to further expand them, a statement from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) in Singapore said.

They also had a useful exchange of views on regional and international developments.

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Sober start as recreational marijuana becomes legal in Canada

Canada became the first industrialised nation to legalise recreational cannabis on Wednesday (Oct 17), but a lawful buzz will be hard to come by in its biggest cities like Toronto and Vancouver, where stores are not yet open.

Marijuana enthusiasts in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada's easternmost province, kicked off the first permitted sales at midnight. Over 100 people braved the cold and wind in the provincial capital St. John's, lining up outside a Tweed-branded store owned by Canopy.

Canopy Chief Executive Office Bruce Linton rang in the first sales to residents Ian Power and Nikki Rose.

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Further US rate hikes 'most likely' needed: Fed minutes

US central bankers see no reason to pause their current course of gradual interest rate hikes amid the American economy's brisk expansion, according to meeting minutes released Wednesday (Oct 17).

Further rate hikes "would most likely be consistent" with the current period of firming inflation and historically low unemployment, according to minutes from the Federal Reserve's most recent meeting three weeks ago.

But some Fed members warned that instability in emerging economies - many of which are heavily indebted and vulnerable when US rates rise - could "spread more broadly through the global economy and financial markets."

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Singer Michael Buble says life changed after son's cancer diagnosis


Singer Michael Buble, who releases his new album Love next month, has spoken about putting his career on hold after his son Noah was diagnosed with liver cancer.

"When you experience something that my family has experienced, it has to change you," he told Reuters on Tuesday (Oct 16).

The Canadian singer announced in November 2016 that his oldest son Noah, who was three at the time, had been diagnosed with cancer and was undergoing treatment.

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