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

Special Operations Task Force (SOTF) officers storming a cinema in Tampines in Singapore's largest counter-terrorism exercise yet.
Special Operations Task Force (SOTF) officers storming a cinema in Tampines in Singapore's largest counter-terrorism exercise yet.ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

Singapore stages its biggest counter-terrorism exercise

Heavily armed troops from the police and Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) turned out in force from Monday (Oct 17) to the early hours of Tuesday (Oct 18) across the island, from Marina Bay to Jurong East, to seek out and neutralise a mock terror threat in the country's largest counter-terrorism exercise yet.

The 18-hour operation involved over 3,200 officers, including those from the Singapore Civil Defence Force and other Home Team agencies.

It climaxed at malls in Bishan and Tampines, where "terrorists" armed with M-16 rifles and explosive vests took hostages, including in a cinema, before being subdued early Tuesday morning.

Speaking to reporters at its conclusion, Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean said the multi-agency exercise was important as it stress-tested the Home Team and SAF’s coordination procedures developed to nullify terror attacks should they occur here.


Singapore's Changi seeking new partner for Rio airport, operator says

Singapore Changi Airport is seeking a potential new partner for its investment in Rio de Janeiro's Galeão international airport, the president of the company that operates the concession said on Monday (Oct 17).

Luiz Rocha told reporters, after meeting with Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles, that Changi was seeking a possible new investor in case its existing partner, Brazilian conglomerate Odebrecht SA, leaves the project.

Changi partnered with Odebrecht in 2013 for the rights to expand and operate Galeão.


Lost phone sparks international friendship

An old train shipped from Japan to Indonesia connected two men by chance, thanks to a smartphone lost on the train.

Shota Noda, 21, a university student from Zama, Kanagawa Prefecture, lost his smartphone on the train while it was in operation in Japan.

The phone was found about 5,800 kilometres away in Jakarta and returned to Noda this summer, seven months after he lost it. Since then, Noda has promoted his friendship with Syahri Rochmat, 24, the Indonesian railroad employee who found the phone.


Hitler birth house to be torn down: Austrian minister

The house in Austria where Adolf Hitler was born is to be torn down to stop it from becoming a neo-Nazi shrine, authorities said Monday (Oct 17) after years of bitter legal wrangling.

“The Hitler house will be torn down. The foundations can remain but a new building will be erected. It will be used by either a charity or the local authorities,” Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka told Austrian newspaper Die Presse.

He said the decision was based on the recommendations of an expert committee tasked with deciding what to do with the controversial building in the quaint northern town of Braunau am Inn.


Football: Liverpool and Man Utd deliver poor 0-0 draw after the hype

One of the most eagerly-awaited clashes of the Premier League season turned into a major letdown as Liverpool and Manchester United nullified each other in a largely undistinguished goalless draw at Anfield on Monday (Oct 17).

After all the hype preceding the battle between English football's fiercest rivals, United's manager Jose Mourinho was left happier than his counterpart Juergen Klopp as the visitors doused Liverpool's acclaimed attacking pyrotechnics.

The home side, full of goals all season, proved desperately disappointing until finding some second-half drive and may have still felt they deserved the win as United goalkeeper David de Gea had to make fine saves from Emre Can and Philippe Coutinho.