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Singapore's territory consists of one main island along with 62 other islets.Since independence, extensive land reclamation has increased its total size by 23% (130 square kilometres (50 sq mi)).They killed their officers and several British civilians before the mutiny was suppressed by non-Muslim troops arriving from Johore and Burma.After the First World War, the British built the large Singapore Naval Base as part of the defensive Singapore strategy.However, the Sultanate was weakened by factional division and Tengku Abdu'r Rahman and his officials were loyal to Tengku Rahman's elder brother Tengku Long who was living in exile in Riau.With the Temenggong's help, Raffles managed to smuggle Tengku Long back into Singapore.Raffles arrived in Singapore on 28 January 1819 and soon recognised the island as a natural choice for the new port.

It lies one degree (137 kilometres (85 mi)) north of the equator, at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, with Indonesia's Riau Islands to the south and Peninsular Malaysia to the north.

It was defended by heavy 15-inch naval guns stationed at Fort Siloso, Fort Canning and Labrador, as well as a Royal Air Force airfield at Tengah Air Base.

Winston Churchill touted it as the "Gibraltar of the East" and military discussions often referred to the base as simply "East of Suez". The British Home Fleet was stationed in Europe, and the British could not afford to build a second fleet to protect its interests in Asia.

The only significant event during the war was a mutiny by the Muslim sepoys from British India who were garrisoned in Singapore, which occurred in 1915.

After hearing rumours that they were to be sent off to fight the Ottoman Empire, which was a Muslim state, the soldiers rebelled.

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