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Topics - MariaSharpie

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Trump administration officials on Tuesday said the U.S. has pulled out of the United Nations Human Rights Council, saying that the international body is "not worthy of its name."

U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley announced the withdrawal alongside Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, following multiple news reports that the move was imminent.
Haley blasted the council as a "protector of human rights abusers and cesspool of political bias" and accused the body of "politicizing and scapegoating countries with positive human rights records."


The authorities released this image of illegal migrants inside a large cage - reporters said they saw unaccompanied children in similar conditions

Reporters and Democratic lawmakers have been allowed inside a detention centre that lies at the heart of a growing storm over a new US policy separating migrant children from their parents.

Authorities did not allow photos or videos to be taken inside the centre, but US Customs and Border Protection later released several images. Former First Lady Laura Bush has compared it to the internment camps used for Japanese-Americans during World War Two. A Democratic congressman who visited the site said it was "nothing short of a prison".

The Texas facility is known as Ursula, though immigrants are reportedly calling it La Perrara - dog kennel in Spanish - in reference to the cages used to hold children and adults who have ended up there after crossing the border from Mexico illegally.

"One cage had 20 children inside. Scattered about are bottles of water, bags of chips [crisps] and large foil sheets intended to serve as blankets," the Associated Press reports.

The High Court has granted Hyflux a six-month lifeline to stave off its creditors.

Now the struggling water project firm must find a buyer for its stake in the giant Tuaspring asset and seek offers from rescue financiers.

Hyflux is seeking to raise about $200 million in rescue financing after the court yesterday granted it a six-month reprieve from creditors to work out a survival plan and reorganise its debts.
Without the debt moratorium, Hyflux would "run out of cash in the next four to five weeks", WongPartnership partner Manoj Sandrasegara told the court.

Hyflux's bank debt is $1.84 billion. That excludes $265 million in outstanding medium-term notes, $400 million in outstanding retail  perpetual preference shares and $500 million in retail perpetual securities.

Hyflux and its units under the moratorium had a cash balance of just  $18.6 million as of June 4. That represents a net cash outflow of $300,000 since May 18.

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SINGAPORE — All civil servants will receive a mid-year  payment — in the form of the annual variable component — of 0.5 month in  July, said the Public Service Division (PSD) on Tuesday (June 19).

While the mid-year component is the same as last year’s, civil servants will also receive a one-off lump sum payment of S$300, with  lower-wage civil servants in Grades IV and V of the Operations Support  Scheme to receive a higher lump sum of S$500.
Civil servants in Grade V of the Operations Support Scheme will get a built-in wage increase of $20, in addition to the annual increments, the PSD said in its media release.

Around 1,450 civil servants will benefit from the higher lump sum payment.

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When a female doctor refused her request to have surgery for menstrual pains on medical grounds, Elizerbeth Chua Hui Ping became enraged and slapped the heavily pregnant doctor.

Chua, a 27-year-old Singaporean, also tried to grab the doctor but was prevented from doing so by a senior staff nurse and a nurse manager.

A week later, Chua, who works at McDonald’s, got into a dispute with her mother over the adoption of kittens and threw a chair at the 63-year-old woman, who managed to dodge it.

For her offences, Chua was sentenced to a mandatory treatment order (MTO) on Tuesday (19 June). An MTO is a community sentencing option lasting up to 36 months for offenders suffering from mental conditions. Chua will receive psychiatric treatment in lieu of jail time.

According to her lawyer Ranadhir Gupta, Chua has an extensive psychiatric history and has been admitted to the Institute of Mental Health for a series of suicide attempts and aggression towards others.

She was first referred to IMH’s Child Guidance Clinic in 2006, when she was 16, after she bit, scratched and punched a student and teacher. She was then assessed to have low average intelligence, low self-esteem and anger management issues.

Chua earlier pleaded guilty to three counts of voluntarily causing hurt and one count of breaching a personal protection order issued on 3 May 2016 to protect her mother against her. One count of committing a rash act and one of voluntarily causing hurt were considered for her sentence.

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As an online reviewer, Lynn is trusted to test and review products, such as those on Chinese shopping website Taobao.
And she gets paid a few hundred dollars for each positive review she posts, never mind that she does not try out some of the items but makes up her evaluations instead – with companies in on the flat-out fakery.

She is part of an army of fake reviewers secretly hired by  recruiting companies that manage the online reputations of businesses. “They send me the link to the product, then they’d ask me to give a good  review,” she disclosed.

Lynn (not her real name), who is in her 30s, writes about three to four reviews a month, and knows some  full-time fake reviewers who earn about S$1,600 a month.

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 After passing the first-year oral comprehensive examination, I am moving on to my second year as a PhD student. The three quarters have flown by so quickly, and there is still the summer to come, but I wanted to document five reflective lessons:

1. The (social service or social welfare) researcher occupies a privileged position.

Unlike the social workers who work directly with the beneficiaries, and who – by extension – bear the burdens of these beneficiaries, the social service or social welfare researcher works from a distance, and through the research process benefit disproportionately from the research outputs too. Beneficence is one of the key ethical principles for research involving human subjects, and while researchers try their best to maximise benefits to the participants and to minimise the costs (or harm), more often than not the overall research gains in terms of conference presentations, publications, and career prospects are most likely to accrue to the researchers. The added privilege of my PhD journey thus far, moreover, is staying alone without immediate familial obligations and being able to focus on my own work.

2. Learning about rejections or failures is one thing, but experiencing them – and bouncing back from them – is another.

Getting used to disappointments is probably part of the job description as a PhD student (or even as an academic), and it starts from the moment one applies to the graduate schools. Notwithstanding the truly exceptional, these rejections or failures are likely to apply to PhD applications, funding proposals, conference calls for papers – all of which happened to me in this first year – and learning how to dust them off has been an experience, especially with the knowledge that this will continue to be the norm in the future. The first thing I have been doing is to keep track of both successes and failures, to stay grounded and to have perspective. The second, for now, is to seek out as many opportunities as possible, so that I can chalk up little victories in spite of the odds.

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Conservatively assuming Ho was earning $54 million then and had worked without any break, this works out to $147,945 a day or about 25 times of the PM’s salary.

Obviously, Ho is currently earning much more as Temasek’s doubling in portfolio value has been often credited to her efforts. A conservative estimate: Ho currently earns about $300,000 a day.

To put Ho Ching’s pay into perspective, ordinary Singaporeans need to slog about a decade to earn the same amount PM Lee’s wife earns in a day.

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An accident involving three vehicles and a wild deer took place along the Bukit Timah Expressway (BKE) early on Sunday (17 June) morning.

Police said they were alerted to the incident – which occurred after the Mandai Road exit in the direction of the Pan Island Expressway (PIE) – at 4.40am. A 46-year-old male taxi driver was conveyed in a conscious state via ambulance to the Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, the police added.

Yahoo News Singapore understands that the animal – a sambar deer – had been spotted along the BKE, which caused a motorcyclist to brake abruptly to avoid hitting it. This led the taxi and car travelling behind the motorcyclist to do the same.

Video footage posted on social media showed the animal struggling to stand on the second lane of the BKE following the accident.

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When the opposition coalition Pakatan Harapan won the general election in Malaysia on 9 May last month, PM Lee quickly went to KL on 19 May to meet and congratulate Dr Mahathir, the leader of the coalition.

However, Dr Mahathir only met him for half an hour.

According to Yahoo news, PM Lee was seen entering the Perdana Leadership Foundation building at 11am, where the meeting was held. Then at 11.30am, he was seen leaving the building after shaking hands with Dr Mahathir.

The scheduled meeting was supposed to give a chance for the two Prime Ministers to discuss bilateral ties.

Jack Ma meets with Dr Mahathir

Yesterday morning (18 Jun), Dr Mahathir met with Alibaba Group founder and executive chairman Jack Ma for 1 hour.

During the one-hour meeting, Bernama reported that both men "shared a lot of ideas and discussed how to lift more Malaysians out of poverty and support more young people and small businesses".

"It was a very good meeting," said Mr Ma, who was in KL to open an Alibaba office there.

Mr Ma came away surprised at the Malaysian Prime Minister's knowledge on technology.

"I am surprised by his knowledge about technology," Mr Ma told Bernama after his meeting with Dr Mahathir.

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The Singapore Business Federation (SBF) said the Trump-Kim summit could help bring lasting peace to North-east Asia. "This will provide  crucial conditions for further trade and investments in the economic  development of Democratic Republic of North Korea," said its chief executive Ho Meng Kit.

Singapore had trade links with North Korea for many years until last November, said Mr Ho. In 2015, Singapore was North Korea's sixth largest trading partner, with bilateral trade reaching US$29 million (S$39  million). But last year, the total amount of trade between the two countries amounted to just S$700,000.

The SBF has led missions to North Korea in the last decade and Mr Ho said its third and last visit was in 2012, which also included a visit to the Chinese city of Dandong, along the North Korean border.

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SINGAPORE — A 30-year-old Malaysian has been charged with the alleged murder of another man along Geylang Road.

Sasitharan Ramasamy, 30, was charged on Saturday (June 16) with causing the death of Nelson Nathan Selvaraja, 29, also a Malaysian, between 7.47am and 8.18am on Friday, reports said.

The relationship between the two men is unclear. If convicted of murder, Sasitharan could face the death sentence.

The police said on Friday that they were alerted to a fight at 218 Geylang Road at about 7.50am.

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