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Russian warplane shot down by Turkey

HIT: Screen grabs showing the Russian warplane in flames and crashing into a mountainous area in northern Syria after being hit by Turkish missiles.
HIT: Handles believed to be parts of a parachute of the downed warplane.
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Protest in Chicago: Video shows white cop shooting black teen 16 times

ANGRY: A demonstrator confronting police officers during a protest after a video was released showing a policeman shooting a teenager armed with a small knife.
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2015 set to be hottest on record

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Photographer's photo of wife wearing kebaya top backwards draws online flak

Photographer's picture of wife wearing kebaya top backwards draws flak. They say:

CONTROVERSY: (Above) Mrs Osmann wearing a nonya kebaya top backwards in Haw Par Villa. Mrs Osmann says she only wore it backwards for the #FollowMeTo photo, and wore it the right way during other shoots.
CONTROVERSY: Mrs Osmann wearing a nonya kebaya top backwards in Haw Par Villa. Mrs Osmann says she only wore it backwards for the #FollowMeTo photo, and wore it the right way during other shoots (above).
Mrs Osmann at Gardens by the Bay.

He is famous for photos of his wife leading him by the hand across the world.

But after Russian photographer Murad Osmann uploaded a photo of his German-born wife Nataly wearing a nyonya kebaya top backwards when they were in Singapore last month, he received an earful from Singaporeans.

The photo, which received over 209,000 likes on Mr Osmann's Instagram page, was slammed for its seeming ignorance. One netizen called it "utterly disrespectful" to the Peranakan culture.

In an e-mail interview with The New Paper, Mrs Osmann said: "We respect all cultures and didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. We just wanted to show the beauty of this outfit, which is why I wore it backwards on purpose. Otherwise how could we highlight the amazing front of the kebaya?"

The couple became accidental Internet stars in 2011 after Mr Osmann uploaded a picture of his then-girlfriend Nataly during their first holiday together in Barcelona, Spain.

"I wanted to take a photo of Nataly but she got shy and turned, grabbing my arm and dragging me forward. That photo was accidental but we really liked it. I posted it on Instagram, created a hashtag and that was how it began," said Mr Osmann, 30, who shoots with professional cameras and wide-angle lenses.

Since then, his #FollowMeTo series on his Instagram page has attracted over 3.6 million followers.

The pair was in town last month to promote the new Singapore Invites Instagram initiative by the Singapore Tourism Board. They also graced an exhibition of the photos from their #FollowMeTo series at Raffles Hotel. The initiative encourages people all over the world to invite their loved ones to Singapore.

This was the couple's second time in Singapore, and they shot more of their signature photos at Gardens by the Bay, Haw Par Villa and Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, with Mrs Osmann in various ethnic outfits.

It was the photo taken at Haw Par Villa that raised the hackles of some netizens.

Mrs Osmann, a travel blogger and journalist, maintains that wearing the kebaya that way was done only for the #FollowMeTo series.

"I wore it the right way in other photos on my own Instagram account and the FollowMeTraveller account but the only exception was made for Murad's account," she said.

She has worn outfits backwards in other instances, like when the couple travelled to Jordan and Abu Dhabi.

"Very often, the front details of an outfit are more interesting than the back, so I wear the outfit backwards to make the picture more intriguing," said Mrs Osmann.

The couple married in June after dating for over three years.


When asked if he has received negative reactions to those photos, he said: "Usually, people pay more attention to the beauty of the places. But I read all the comments on my photos so it was logical to explain the true reason behind the decision."

In fact, negative reactions are the least of their worries.

"Sometimes, security guards stop us when it is forbidden to shoot," Mr Osmann said.

"So we have only five seconds to get the picture. We had to run away from the police in Milan and Hong Kong as we were shooting in forbidden places."

MP Tin Pei Ling offers to help evicted Katong Plaza cobbler

HELPING HAND: Ms Tin Pei Ling with cobbler Ng Ah Bah at her Meet-the-People Session on Monday.
HELPING HAND: Mr Ng and his wife, Madam Yap Guek Neo, who suffered from a stroke in April last year.

Cobbler Ng Ah Bah has plied his trade from a pushcart at Katong Plaza’s sheltered walkway for more than 11 years.

But Mr Ng, 70, will no longer be at his usual spot from this evening after the building management gave him one month’s notice to leave, following an incident at his stall on the night of Oct 26.

A drunk man was found sleeping behind the pushcart and he turned violent when asked to leave.

Ms Tin Pei Ling, Member of Parliament for MacPherson, has offered to help to Mr Ng, who is a resident of her ward, after meeting him at her Meet-The-People Session on Monday.

Said Ms Tin: “His main concern was to continue his trade as a cobbler because he was worried about his wife’s expenses at the nursing home.”

Read the full report in our print edition on Nov 26.

Subscribe to The New Paper, now available in print and digital, at

M1 subscribers complain of no reception for a week

M1 subscribers at Hougang Parkview estate had no mobile phone reception for a week

It was back to pre-mobile phone days for some residents of Hougang Parkview estate recently.

From Nov 18, for over a week, a number of M1 subscribers said they could not make or receive calls on their mobile phones or send text messages because there was no reception.

“There was no reception at the sheltered area near my block. I couldn’t book a cab if I needed one urgently,” mother of two girls Memilk Ang told The New Paper on Tuesday.

Other M1 subscribers said they had the same problem when they were home. They had no prior problems.

TNP understands that Singtel and StarHub subscribers at the estate — which comprises several blocks — did not have any problems.

M1’s Director of Corporate Communications and Investor Relations Ivan Lim said M1 was already working with HDB and the town council for the relevant approvals to install a new base station nearby to enhance coverage.  The station is scheduled to go live by the end of December.

Read the full report in our print edition on Nov 26.

Subscribe to The New Paper, now available in print and digital, at

No train, exam pain

Yesterday's MRT disruption spooked JC students sitting A-level examinations

CHAOS: The disruption resulted in huge crowds at Bishan MRT station.
CHAOS: At around 5.50am, SCDF said it put out a fire at Ang Mo Kio MRT station. It is not clear if the fire was related to the disruption.
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YOUR SAY: Bring back all the old bus services

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