The news in 5 minutes (The Straits Times)


KL hunt for bomb plotters

MALAYSIA will use all measures at its disposal, including intercepting phone messages, as it tries to nail down the remaining members of a terror cell that plotted to bomb strategic targets in the Klang Valley.

Step out and clean up S’pore

EVERYONE’S invited to clean up areas around them this Sunday at the Public Hygiene Council’s first national litter-picking event. More than 8,000 volunteers are being rallied to clean up in more than 130 locations.


Tension grips Baltimore

MARYLAND’S governor activated the National Guard and the city of Baltimore announced a curfew for all residents after a turbulent day that began with Monday’s funeral of Freddie Gray, 25, the latest symbol of US police brutality. Nearly 200 people have been arrested.

Cheers for US-Japan pact

US President Barack Obama with Japan’s Premier Shinzo Abe. — PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

WASHINGTON analysts are hailing the landmark revision to the US-Japan security cooperation guidelines, saying the move – which expands the role of the Japanese military – will serve as an anchor to the occasionally erratic White House pivot to Asia and ease tension in the region.

‘Militants under radar’

TWELVE militant suspects arrested in Malaysia over the weekend have no criminal record and flew under police radar, said a senior counter-terrorism source. Most of them were on their way up a peak in Selangor, intending to assemble a bomb, when they were arrested.

‘Erosion of trust’

WITHOUT naming China explicitly, Asean criticised land reclamation in the South China Sea as its leaders wrapped up their summit yesterday, saying the reclamation had “eroded trust and confidence and may undermine peace, security and stability” in the disputed waters.


Problematic Thai charter

THE new draft charter for Thailand is well-intentioned but problematic, as it stems from a mistrust of the electoral process, says By Invitation columnist Thitinan Pongsudhirak. It would allow for an unelected premier, give non-elected institutions power over political parties, and demonise elected politicians.

The outcome will be people shunning electoral contests, leaving Thailand reliant on appointed, non-elected leadership.


The move to have independent experts assess the rail network’s health speaks of serious intent to get to the root of transport woes. It is vital to improve rail reliability for the sake of commuters, to pre-empt problems in new lines and encourage more to switch to public transport.


Flat dwellers’ issues

FEWER than half of those living in Housing Board flats faced inconvenience from their neighbours in 2013.

But for those who did, more found it “intolerable” than in 2008, when the survey was last done.

School to keep its name

TANGLIN Secondary School will be able to keep its name, even as it merges with the nearby Clementi Woods Secondary.

The school’s old boys and girls had lobbied to retain the name, starting a Facebook group and a petition. Signatures collected from the petition were submitted to the Ministry of Education.

SMRT doing more for workers

SMRT’s transport workers are earning more, through higher base pay and an incentive scheme. Staff unions and management enjoy a strong partnership. SMRT will receive the Plaque of Commendation (Gold) at the labour movement’s May Day awards today.


Nobel’s director ousted

NON-EXECUTIVE director Bert Choong’s bid to stay on the board of furniture and property company Nobel Design failed at a heated annual general meeting yesterday. He received 31.2 per cent backing from shareholders, ending his strained relationship with Nobel’s management.


Jenner’s family on therapy

Bruce Jenner’s extended family is still adjusting to his decision. — PHOTO: REUTERS

OLYMPIC gold medallist Bruce Jenner’s extended family is still adjusting to his decision to live as a woman, his stepdaughter Kim Kardashian said on Monday. The 34-year-old reality TV star said the family was undergoing therapy to process the change, but said they all support him.

Stretching her limits

Oon Shu An stars in Rubbers, a sex-themed comedy directed by Han Yew Kwang. — PHOTO: GOLDEN VILLAGE

AMERICAN porn, European porn, Japanese porn – actress Oon Shu An has watched them all – in the name of research. She plays a Japanese adult video star in the local sex comedy Rubbers, which opens tomorrow. When she told her parents about the part, her mother sighed and asked: “Why must you do this kind of role?”


Mourinho not sorry for ‘boring’ style

CHELSEA manager Jose Mourinho has refused to apologise for his team’s pragmatic, “boring” style of play. He has even pointed out that his boss, owner Roman Abramovich, is very happy with the risk-free style which has allowed the club to move to the verge of the English Premier League title.


101 questions and answers on MediShield Life


STILL not sure what MediShield Life, the new health insurance scheme which will replace MediShield, is all about? Find the answers to 101 questions about the scheme in our list of FAQs at


Avian attractions

JURONG Bird Park recently welcomed five rare species of birds to its Wings of Asia aviary.

Go to to learn more about the creatures.

Asean summit highlights

FROM territory to terrorism, here are six highlights of issues discussed at this week’s meeting of Asean leaders.

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