Singapore. JB Jeyaretnam, 74-year-old secretary general of the opposition Labor Party, was declared bankrupt by the Supreme Court in May. Through the verdict, it became impossible for Jeyaretnam to serve as the elected member of Parliament. The reason for the verdict was that Jeyaretnam did not pay the damages he was sentenced three years earlier when he was accused of slander by Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong and other members of the ruling People’s Action Party. The case had been criticized by the International Law Commission, which questioned whether Singapore’s judiciary was independent.
In May, Singapore’s defense minister agreed to allow the Japanese military to use Singapore’s military bases to evacuate civilian Japanese or engaged in peacekeeping operations in Southeast Asia.
- ABBREVIATIONFINDER: Offers three letter and two letter abbreviations for the country of Singapore. Also covers country profile such as geography, society and economy.
In November, the foreign ministers met in the Southeast Asian cooperation organization ASEAN in Singapore. The countries decided to create a duty-free zone for all information technology products by 2010. At the same time, a regional fiber optic broadband network will be built to facilitate trade via the Internet. According to the government, there were already broadband connections to all houses throughout Singapore.
In October, Singapore was elected a member of the UN Security Council for the next two years.
According to COUNTRYAAH, the population of Singapore in 2000 was 4,028,760, ranking number 119 in the world. The population growth rate was 2.700% yearly, and the population density was 5755.5300 people per km2.
Singapore would have been almost impregnable if the same care had been devoted to the land front as to the sea front. Instead, it had been greatly neglected in the belief that the Malay Peninsula, with its wild, impenetrable jungle, was an absolutely prohibitive obstacle to a large modern army. Therefore, not only – as has been said – the logistic complex gravitated towards the Johore canal, but few artilleries had the possibility of directing their fire towards the continent and of them those of large caliber, at the time of the Japanese attack, they were devoid of ammunition and the small caliber ones had a supply of only thirty rounds per piece.
The “fortress of Singapore” was commanded by Major General F. Keith Simmons and General Percival took refuge in it, with the remains of the troops, who had vainly tried, until January 31, 1942, to oppose the Japanese advance along the Malay peninsula (see malacca, in this App.).
The Japanese began bombing the island in early February and, surprisingly, the night on the 9th, around iant., daring swimmers crossed the strait, deactivated the mines and removed the retal obstructions; some units with light artillery followed on small rafts and landed near Kranji. They moved south and invaded the naval base of Seletar, while other departments – following the railway – occupied Mandai. Having restored the dam, the Japanese fed the attack with greater force, repelled a counterattack attempted with Australian troops by gen. Bennest, seized the main water deposits. On the 11th they were already in the interior of the city of Singapore, while the British troops resisted with obstinate courage, defending the naval base of Seletar, the port of Singapore and certain fortifications. But, on the afternoon of the 15th, due to the lack of water, for the losses to which the civilian population was subjected and for the enormous disparity of forces, gen. Percival decided to capitulate. The Japanese captured over 70,000 men and enormous material.
The British fleet returned to Singapore on 3 September 1945, with the cruiser Cleopatra ; the army landed in five points of the island on the morning of the 5th, following an agreement reached with the local Japanese authorities. On the 12th, the gen. Itagaki signed the surrender deed of the Japanese troops operating in Southeast Asia in Singapore.
In 1947, 940,756 residents lived on the island of Singapore. of which 116,583 Malaysians, 728,523 Chinese, 71,300 Indians and 8790 Europeans (the other 15,560 are mostly of mixed blood).