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Hundreds of thousands of retired Britons in EU 'may be forced to return'
Campaigners say pensioners in countries such as Spain will have to go back to UK if they can no longer get free healthcareHundreds of thousands of elderly Britons living in Europe may be forced to return to the UK unless the government guarantees that their healthcare will continue to be reimbursed by the NHS, campaigners for British people settled in Spain and France have warned.The House of Commons Brexit select committee was told on Wednesday that an unintended consequence of Brexit could be a surge in immigration of British migrants both working and retired. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:02:38 GMT)

2016 hottest year ever recorded – and scientists say human activity to blame
• Final data confirms record-breaking temperatures for third year in a row• Earth has not been this warm for 115,000 years 2016 was the hottest year on record, setting a new high for the third year in a row, with scientists firmly putting the blame on human activities that drive climate change. The final data for 2016 was released on Wednesday by the three key agencies – the UK Met Office and Nasa and Noaa in the US – and showed 16 of the 17 hottest years on record have been this century. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 15:30:11 GMT)

Royal Albert Hall called a 'national disgrace' over members' ticket resales
Pamphlet distributed to members who own 1,276 permanent seats offers advice on maximising resale profits on ticketing sitesRoyal Albert Hall members have exchanged detailed advice on how to sell their seats on ticket touting sites, prompting the venue’s former president to label its stewardship a “national disgrace”. The members, about 330 individuals who own 1,276 permanent seats in the 5,272 capacity venue, were sent a document offering tips on how to use online resale sites. The pamphlet tells members they can eschew the RAH’s official ticket return system and use controversial “secondary” ticketing sites such as Viagogo and StubHub to make more money. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:05:29 GMT)

British tourists crowd Banjul airport hoping to board evacuation flights
UK Foreign Office warns against all but essential travel to the Gambia after president declares state of emergencyThere were chaotic scenes at Banjul airport in the Gambia on Wednesday as tourists scrambled to leave the country after its embattled president announced a national state of emergency.British tourists who were hoping to soak up some winter sun were repacking their bags and boarding buses from resorts across the small west African nation as tour operators decided to evacuate their customers in response to a change in Foreign Office advice. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:31:25 GMT)

Mali suicide bomber kills at least 50 people in Gao military camp
Attack marks significant setback for peace efforts in region after vehicle explosion hits joint operational mechanism baseA suicide bomber in a vehicle full of explosives has attacked a camp in northern Mali, killing at least 50 people and wounding dozens of soldiers and former fighters. Related: The struggle for Mali | Jack Watling and Paul Raymond Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:32:02 GMT)

Home Office refuses to enforce privacy code on NHS staff using video
Surveillance camera commissioner’s advice that trusts be required to comply with code to protect patients is rejectedThe government has rejected a request by the surveillance camera watchdog to allow it to monitor the increasing and unregulated use of CCTV and body-worn video cameras in hospitals.The body cameras, which record sound as well as images, are being increasingly deployed in hospitals in an effort to tackle abuse of frontline health service staff. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:31:05 GMT)

Prepare for new surge in hate crimes against EU citizens, says EHRC
UK human rights watchdog says police should be prepared for backlash against EU citizens when article 50 is triggeredBritain should prepare for a fresh spike in hate crimes against EU citizens when the article 50 process triggering Brexit begins, the human rights watchdog has said.David Isaac, chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), told a hearing of MPs he was worried the start of formally leaving the bloc could cause a backlash against EU citizens, similar to the period of increased hate crime that followed the EU referendum, and was calling on police to be prepared for such an eventuality. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:40:18 GMT)

Iraq has retaken east Mosul from Isis, says army general
Lt Gen Talib Shaghati says government troops are in ‘full control’ of eastern part of Iraq’s second largest cityIraqi government troops say they are in “full control” of east Mosul three months into a major operation to recapture the country’s second city, despite some Islamic State fighters remaining along the Tigris river. Related: The battle for Mosul in maps Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:32:31 GMT)

BBC Trust says Laura Kuenssberg report on Corbyn was inaccurate
Regulator says report on Labour leader’s views about shoot-to-kill breached impartiality and accuracy guidelinesThe BBC’s political editor inaccurately reported Jeremy Corbyn’s views about shoot-to-kill policies in the aftermath of the terror attacks in Paris, according to the BBC Trust.The broadcaster’s regulator concluded that a Laura Kuenssberg report for the News at Six in November 2015 breached the broadcaster’s impartiality and accuracy guidelines, in a ruling that triggered an angry response from the corporation’s director of news. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:40:30 GMT)

Rachael Heyhoe Flint, trailblazer for women’s sport, dies aged 77
• Former England women’s captain won World Cup in 1973• Heyhoe Flint also served as director of Wolverhampton WanderersThe former England women’s cricket captain and Wolves vice-president Rachael Heyhoe Flint has died aged 77, Wolves have announced. Related: Rachael Heyhoe Flint: 'It's amazing … women are almost on parity with men' Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:35:37 GMT)

'The swamp is Goldman Sachs': how the bank is rewarded for putting profits over people
The US government has continually mined the bank for some of its top posts despite its role in the 2008 financial crisis – and protests are popping up across the country again in response to Donald Trump’s cabinet picksIn a persistent drizzle on 17 January, a group of protesters swathed in green ponchos unfurled tarps and sleeping bags on the sidewalk in front of Goldman Sachs’ high-rise building on the West Side highway in New York City. A few of them wore handmade swamp creature masks; others bore signs with the swamp creatures on them. A light-board sign declared the bank “Government Sachs”.The protest was the beginning of a multi-day camp-out aiming to stay on the sidewalk outside the investment bank until the inauguration of Donald Trump, and to bring people affected by the bank’s policies to the doorstep of some of the world’s richest people – some of whom will belong to the Trump administration. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:13:11 GMT)

William Onyeabor: one of music’s most insoluble puzzles to the end
Who was William Onyeabor? The mysterious and reclusive Nigerian synthesizer whiz, who has died aged 70, seems to have existed out of time and in a world of his own imaginationWilliam Onyeabor, the Nigerian musician who died in his sleep on Monday at the age of 70, was the recluse’s recluse. For someone like Sixto Rodriguez, subject of the documentary Searching for Sugarman, belated cult stardom was both a vindication and a second chance. But for Onyeabor, growing interest in the music he released during the 70s and 80s cut little ice. Requiring neither money nor attention, he declined to promote Who is William Onyeabor?, the 2013 compilation released on the Luaka Bop label. It says a great deal about his popularity with musicians that the mutating supergroup that toured in his place featured the likes of David Byrne, Damon Albarn, Blood Orange and Hot Chip. Thanks to fans like these, Onyeabor achieved the almost impossible: he experienced a successful comeback with his enigma intact, and without lifting a finger. Related: William Onyeabor, cult Nigerian musician, has died aged 70 Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:39:49 GMT)

Live-shooting with Woody Harrelson at 2am: 'There's something about the terror of it I love'
In 2002, the star ended up in jail after being chased through London by police. Now he’s turning that wild night into a single-take movie starring Owen Wilson and Willie Nelson to be beamed live into cinemas. What could possibly go wrong?It is almost midnight on Monday evening and Woody Harrelson is showing me around the set for his directorial debut, Lost in London. An unused building in the centre of the capital has been commandeered to house assorted locations including a club with burlesque trimmings where gold statues dangle from the ceiling and a police station complete with cells and interview rooms.There’s just one problem: Harrelson doesn’t seem to know where he is. “Hold on,” he mumbles. “I lost track of what floor we’re on. Where’s the …?” His bleariness has always been a considerable part of his charm: that sleepy Texan drawl, that quizzical gaze, half-amazed and half-sceptical. But padding around in tracksuit bottoms and a fleece, his eyes faintly bloodshot, the 55-year-old actor looks positively somnambulant. He smiles as he recognises his cinematographer, Nigel Willoughby. “Nigel, where’s the room where I get booked by the cops?” An affectionate chuckle: “Next floor up, Woody.” Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 17:49:42 GMT)

How a design competition changed the US approach to disaster response
Nate Berg tells the story of Rebuild By Design, a competition – and now its own organisation – based on taking a more proactive approach to disaster response in cities; but how far can you prepare for the effects of climate change?Ten years ago, New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg released a plan to create what he called “the first environmentally sustainable 21st-century city”. The blueprint, known as PlaNYC and released on Earth Day, outlined more than 100 projects and policies to create that sustainable city by 2030.It set a precedent for local action on climate change; cities around the world began drafting their own sustainability plans. But then in October 2012, it got a harsh reality check. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:03:45 GMT)

Mark Fisher’s K-punk blogs were required reading for a generation | Simon Reynolds
The activist writer, who has died aged 48, bridged aesthetics and politics and had struggled with depressionLast week the writer Mark Fisher took his own life. His on/off struggle with depression was something he wrote about with courageous candour in articles and in his landmark book Capitalist Realism: is There No Alternative? Fisher argued that the pandemic of mental anguish that afflicts our time cannot be properly understood, or healed, if viewed as a private problem suffered by damaged individuals. Rather, it was the symptom of a heartless and hopeless politics: precarious employment and flexible work patterns, the erosion of class solidarity and its institutions such as unions, and the relentless message from mainstream political parties and media alike that “there is no alternative” to managerial capitalism. That this is as good as it gets – so deal with it.Finally the depression that Fisher, 48, had dissected acutely and fought against doggedly got the better of him. He left behind a wife and young son, a close-knit network of friends, allies, colleagues and students, and an ever-widening readership, all of whom were waiting always to hear what he had to say next. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:31:41 GMT)

Gabon v Burkina Faso: Afcon 2017 – as it happened
Hosts held again 5.56pm GMT Another 1-1 draw in this group leaves the hosts in a dicey position: they’ll probably need to beat Cameroon in their last match, while Burkina face Guinea Bissau. While it’s true that Gabon might have won here if not for the excellence of the opposing goalkeeper, 20-year-old Hervé Koffi, they generally lacked attacking fluency and Burkina were the better side for some chunks of the game. Still, the first of the second round of matches suggests this tournament is gathering momentum. And on that note, bye. 5.51pm GMT 90+3 min: One last chance for Gabon? A freekick midway inside the Burkina half gives Bouanga an opportunity to send one into what is known in these parts as ‘the mixer’. But it’s a bad delivery. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:56:07 GMT)

James Ellington and Nigel Levine face career-ending injuries after crash
• Ellington and Nigel Levine in motorbike accident in Tenerife• ‘I do not know how me or Nigel are still alive,’ posts EllingtonJames Ellington has said he does not know how he and Nigel Levine are still alive after the British pair were left with injuries that are likely to end their careers following a head-on collision with a car during a training camp in Tenerife. Related: David Weir ‘let down again’ as he attacks British Athletics before retiring Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:14:09 GMT)

Using footballers’ wages as an example of excess is patronising and lazy | Marina Hyde
Top-flight football is one of the few engines of social mobility that still works and those who play to the gallery are too lazy or dim to formulate a proper argumentIn one sense, it is not the most enormous shock to find footballers’ pay is something on which Jeremy Corbyn disagrees with himself. A subject on which the Labour leader cannot hold two diametrically opposed opinions on the same day is increasingly a rarity. The problem with the new strategy of letting Jeremy be Jeremy is that – a bit like various football sides of cliché – you never know which one is going to turn up.Last week Corbyn declared that there should be a cap on “grotesque” salaries. And whaddayaknow – the very first example of such salaries upon which he alighted was in football. “Certainly, the salaries that are paid to some footballers are simply ridiculous,” he stated, adding: “Some of the salaries paid to very high-earning top executives of companies are utterly ridiculous.” Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:38:00 GMT)

Dan Evans sends world No7 Marin Cilic crashing out of Australian Open
• Briton defeats Cilic 3-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-3 in rock-concert atmosphere• ‘I struggled early but once the sun went down I got into it,’ says EvansDan Evans is on some sort of a roll, dismissing the former US Open champion Marin Cilic in four sublime sets to reach the third round of a grand slam for the fifth time, a record at odds with the outdated perception of him as a tearaway and underachiever.It would be a shame, however, if he were to dilute his beguiling swagger, as it is the very quality that may carry him into the second week of the Australian Open. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:43:18 GMT)

Andy Murray shrugs off stiff ankle to beat Andrey Rublev at Australian Open
• World No1 wins 6-3, 6-0, 6-2 and now plays Sam Querrey• Murray calls on trainer after problem with ankle in third setAndy Murray sometimes struggles to hit a convincing rhythm early in grand slam tournaments but, after a hesitant start on Monday, he goes into the third round against Sam Querrey on Friday looking as dominant as he did when stringing together 28 wins in a row on his rise to No1 in the world.He made the most of a heaven-sent opportunity against the little-known Russian teenager and world No156 Andrey Rublev, to win 6-3, 6-0, 6-2, with a slight chill lurking in the cloudless night skies after a couple of days of killing heat. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:35:19 GMT)

Chaos at Mestalla: Valencia's journey from Champions League to utter disarray
Peter Lim was hailed as a saviour when took over Valencia in 2014 but – seven managers later – the fans now want him out. How did it come to this?At a press conference held in a Valencia hotel two weeks ago, Jesús “Suso” García Pitarch was asked why Peter Lim had bought the city’s football team in the first place. It was a loaded question, one supporters have pondered often over the last couple of years, and the answer, or the lack of one, felt loaded as well. Pitarch, the sporting director recently back from Singapore where he had met with the owner to discuss plans for the club only to resign soon after, replied that he had never asked and had no explanation either. “I don’t know,” he said. “I suppose he likes football.” Related: Sevilla end Real Madrid's run as Sergio Ramos shows sense of theatre again Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:23:06 GMT)

Nick Kyrgios unravels in baffling Australian Open defeat to Andreas Seppi
Australian No1 beaten by Italian in five sets 1-6, 6-7 (7-1), 6-4, 6-2, 10-8Kyrgios squanders two-set lead in wildly fluctuating second-round matchSomeone carried a giant inflatable kangaroo into Hisense Arena before Nick Kyrgios squared off against Andreas Seppi on Wednesday, but the Australian punctured his own first grand slam campaign of the year with a quite astonishing display of self-destruction in Melbourne. Having been two sets up and perfectly comfortable in this match against the Italian journeyman, Kyrgios dissolved into mess of code violations and unforced errors and in doing so, turned a straightforward match-up into a five-set horror show of scarcely believable proportions. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:02:22 GMT)

The time has come for Manchester City to make a Premier League statement | Paul Wilson
Spurs are at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday and Pep Guardiola needs the City team who overcame Arsenal to turn up not the one humbled 4-0 at EvertonLess than a fortnight ago, the day after Manchester City’s 5-0 demolition of West Ham United away from home in the FA Cup, the Sun produced one of the more inspired back pages of the season in honour of the performance. “MC Hammer!” the main headline screamed, accompanied by a picture of David Silva complete with speech bubble reading: “You can’t touch this.”It all seemed completely in order. Pep Guardiola’s side had just made the most emphatic of statements to restore some of the belief that went missing in the new year fixtures, when defeat at Anfield was followed by the various controversies surrounding the narrow win against Burnley. A manager who had been sourly defensive in a television interview after the latter was now all smiles and sunny confidence, promising his side would be all the better for the luxury of a full week to prepare for their next game at Everton. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 15:02:00 GMT)

Police confirm more than 500 potential victims in football sexual abuse scandal
• National Police Chiefs’ Council says number of clubs involved is now 248• Referrals identify 184 suspects; 22 referrals were non-football relatedThe number of clubs affected by British football’s historical child sexual abuse scandal has grown to 248, according to figures released on Wednesday by the National Police Chiefs’ Council.This is an increase of 100 clubs, amateur and professional, since the last update four weeks ago. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:49:13 GMT)

What is the fastest goal scored by a football team not kicking off? | The Knowledge
Plus: most relegations for one city in a single season, players sent off while on a stretcher, and more. Send your questions and answers to [email protected] or tweet @TheKnowledge_GU“After seeing midfield maestro Jamie O’Hara show his silky skills on Celebrity Big Brother, my memory went back to Fulham’s home game v Ipswich Town last season,” begins Will O’Leary. “O’Hara was in the Fulham side that was 1-0 down after 16 seconds. Has there been any game where a quicker goal has been conceded with the opposing team kicking off?”The long answer is yes – quite a few in fact. Let’s start in London. “I can still see Joe Cole’s ropey backpass setting up James Beattie to score for Southampton at the Bridge (28 August 2004) after just 12 seconds,” recalls Chris Taylor. “Luckily Beattie was in fine goalscoring form that day and put through his own net as José Mourinho’s Chelsea won 2-1.” Darren White also has memories of an early goal against the run of kick-off, scored by Peter Withe for Sheffield United against Barnsley in 1985. “I believe this was timed at nine seconds,” says Darren. “Unfortunately, this was the days before blanket TV coverage for all games, so I can’t show you proof, but I was there and the event is implanted on my mind!” Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:31:06 GMT)

Manchester United’s Memphis Depay close to Lyon move for £14.7m
• Dutch international keen to join French club in next few days• United prepared to accept half the fee they paid PSV Eindhoven in 2015Lyon are closing in on the signing of Memphis Depay from Manchester United for around €17m (£14.75m), a fee which would represent nearly a 50% loss on a player who cost €34m from PSV Eindhoven in May 2015.Discussions are understood to be on-going between the clubs regarding the final price and structure of the transfer. While it is possible United may hold out for a larger fee, Depay is keen on a move to the French club, who are currently fourth in Ligue 1. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:47:20 GMT)

Former Fiji sevens coach Ben Ryan joins Wales as consultant
• Ryan led Fiji to gold medal at Rio Olympics last summer• Peter Drewett appointed as the new performance coach managerBen Ryan, the sevens coach who helped Fiji win their first Olympic gold medal in Rio, has taken up a consultancy role with the Welsh Rugby Union. Related: Six Nations 2017: Gloucester centre Matt Scott recalled to Scotland squad Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:57:09 GMT)

Henrik Stenson issues fitness warning about strain of modern swings
• Swede says wear and tear will appear later in career• Open champion happy with Ryder Cup qualification changesHenrik Stenson believes the physicality of swings as used by Rory McIlroy and Jason Day inevitably play a part in injuries. The Open champion has warned emerging players of the need to prepare their bodies for the strain caused by modern techniques. Related: Rory McIlroy’s rib injury – is it really as big a deal as everyone seems to think? | Ewan Murray Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:36:00 GMT)

Angelique Kerber again fails to convince in latest Australian Open victory
World No1 struggles to see off fellow German Carina Witthöft 6-2, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2Venus Williams and Svetlana Kuznetsova also into third round on day twoOne slightly pained smile at the coin toss and the customary post-match handshake was about as convivial as it got between Angelique Kerber and German compatriot Carina Witthöft in Melbourne on Wednesday. The world No1 claimed a 6-2, 6-7 (3-7), 6-2 victory and passage to the third round of her Australian Open defence, but not without her second gruelling battle in as many matches.Right from the off there was an edge to the contest. Witthöft conceded an early break moments after Kerber’s sun visor had flown off her head in the middle of the crucial point, netting the ball and then making a quite stern protest to chair umpire about the injustice of it all. She was waved off, but struck back immediately with a break of her own. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 04:43:53 GMT)

French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron’s ‘anti-system’ angle is a sham | Philippe Marlière
Youthful and ‘doubly liberal’, the former economy minister is the surprise package in the presidential race. But he’s not the outsider he’s portrayed asOn several counts, Emmanuel Macron is a political oddity in the stagnant world of French politics: he is young (39), he worked in the private sector before becoming François Hollande’s economic adviser at the Elysée palace. His political rise from there was meteoric: within two years, he had been appointed minister of the economy. From an ideological viewpoint, he is also a highly unusual politician. Macron unashamedly embraces both poles of liberalism: the economic and the political/cultural ones. Related: François Fillon is as big a threat to liberal values as Marine Le Pen | Natalie Nougayrède Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:23:09 GMT)

PMQs shows it’s Jeremy Corbyn, not Theresa May, who has no Brexit plan | Martin Kettle
Riding high after her Brexit speech, May made short work of the Labour leader’s scripted performance with missed opportunities to press her on a white paperEven if Jeremy Corbyn were a much more adept parliamentary performer, today’s prime minister’s questions would have been a tough fixture. And so it proved.Theresa May arrived in the Commons off the back of a personal success in her Brexit speech yesterday. It was full of claims that may not survive contact with the other member states – it called to mind Mike Tyson’s comment that all his opponents had a plan “’till they get punched in the mouth” – but there is no denying that it was a personal success, got good press reviews and pulled her party together. Everything about May’s demeanour today was that of a prime minister with fresh authority. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:24:00 GMT)

Bregrets? I’ve found very few. Polls show remainers are getting over it | Deborah Mattinson
Leavers are punching the air over Brexit, and even those who voted to stay in the EU now appear to be coming to terms with the result of the referendumSpeaking at events before the referendum last year, I took to asking the audience who they thought would win. Throughout, the BritainThinks poll of polls stubbornly showed remain and leave neck and neck, and in the “short campaign” more polls favoured leave than remain. But a show of hands drawn from the usual audience of business leaders, journalists and politicians consistently and confidently predicted a remain victory.One eminent commentator, often speaking on the same platforms as me, promised: “Remain will win, and will win big”. Another observed that the “great British public would look over the brink, and then vote for the status quo … as they always do”. Discussion usually focused on the inevitability of voters “seeing sense”. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:01:26 GMT)

The Great British cake plan is no more – that’s what Brussels heard May say | Mary Dejevsky
After Theresa May’s speech, the EU believes Britain has finally given up on the idea of trading freedom of movement and access to the single marketNot for the first time, and probably not for the last, the most colourful and combative language in response to the prime minister’s speech on Brexit came from her own foreign secretary. In response to remarks from a French presidential aide, but which also appeared to have a more generally pre-emptive purpose, Boris Johnson warned François Hollande against wanting “to administer punishment beatings to anybody who chooses to escape, in the manner of some world war two movie”.In the event, his warning – if intended as such – proved unnecessary, because when the official response to Theresa May’s address came from the European Union, everyone, including the president of the commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, seemed determined to be on best behaviour. (The fact that Johnson had been speaking during a visit to India might help to explain why his comments struck so much the wrong note.) Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:28:08 GMT)

May’s Brexit focus on immigration will have catastrophic consequences | Anne Perkins
The EU referendum result was never about immigration. But the prime minister is determined to interpret the leave vote that wayIt is one of the most basic of political lessons to interpret events so that they support your argument. Theresa May has taken this workaday truth and developed it into an overarching narrative for her Brexit strategy. She is well on her way to pulling off an act of national self-harm, and in the total absence of a counter-strategy she is running away with the ball.It was there again in her Lancaster House speech yesterday, this misconstruction of the leave vote: “The message from the public before and during the referendum campaign was clear,” she told the ambassadors and hacks gathered in surroundings of gilded imperial glory: “Brexit must mean control of the number of people who come to Britain from Europe.” Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:20:00 GMT)

What I’ve witnessed in Turkey is an assault on democracy itself | Owen Jones
Erdoğan, emboldened by the rise of Trump, is crushing fragile freedoms – tens of thousands detained and the press muzzled. The west must end its silenceDemocracy is a bundle of rights and freedoms wrestled from the powerful. Our rulers only surrender their power when compelled to – when the cost of resisting pressure from below becomes greater than the cost of giving ground to it.But it is naive to regard these concessions as permanent. Elites are always waiting for opportunities to seize back their power. The ideal excuse is a national crisis, contrived or otherwise, normally involving an alliance of internal and external threats, all requiring drastic measures to defeat. The authoritarian rightwing populism sweeping the Western world skilfully exploits fear to drive back the borders of democracy. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:00:01 GMT)

Theresa May’s Brexit plan has potentially disastrous gaps in it | Keir Starmer
The prime minister’s speech brings into question her commitment to a whole host of social, economic and workplace rights. Labour will fight to protect themIn the debate about the government’s Brexit strategy, a good deal of ink has been spilt on the finer distinctions of the single market and the customs union. Related: Our panel’s verdict on Theresa May’s Brexit speech Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:59:00 GMT)

Chelsea Manning did the right thing. Finally, Barack Obama has too | Trevor Timm
With a stroke of his pen, the president made up for his draconian record – and, quite literally, saved this heroic whistleblower’s lifeThere is no one who has suffered more under the US government’s crackdown on leakers and whistleblowers than Chelsea Manning. But now, after President Obama commuted her unjust 35-year jail sentence on Tuesday, she will, amazingly, soon be able to walk free.Manning, who provided journalists a historic treasure trove of documents and the public an unparalleled window into world diplomacy, will no longer have to spend the rest of her life behind bars. She will be released from prison on 17 May instead of the unconscionable 2045. It’s a cause for celebration, but also a time for reflection – not just about what she has gone through but what her case represents. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 00:51:41 GMT)

The Girl Scout in me would never stand for Donald Trump | Jean Hannah Edelstein
An organization that instils courage, confidence and modern values in young American women should also be boycotting the president-elect’s inaugurationI resigned from Girl Scouts more than 20 years ago, but yesterday I realized that the people who told me I’d always be a scout at heart were right: the news that the Girl Scouts are sending a contingent to participate in Donald Trump’s inauguration filled me with real rage. How can an organization that promises to build “girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place” send them to celebrate the ascent of a leader who would likely consider them fair game for sexual assault if they grow up to be “beautiful”?Girl Scouts is important to many girls. It was for me: a kid from a two-nationality, two-religion family, growing up in a small city in upstate New York in the mid-80s and 90s. There weren’t too many public spaces where I felt like I belonged – my family did not practice any faith. There was no community center for people like us. But my Girl Scout troops filled that gap: our weekly meetings were an all-female space where empowering girls was central. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:08:50 GMT)

On mental health, the Tories need to put their money where their mouths are | Alastair Campbell
David Cameron and Theresa May have said all the right things about improving the nation’s mental health. Yet people aren’t getting the help they badly needWhat is it about the mental health debate that makes me go all Malcolm Tucker, effing and blinding at the gap between what politicians say about it and the reality on the ground? And why do I want everyone else to get as angry as I am about it? Because every time there is pressure on health spending, mental illness slips down the priority queue.We are frankly light years away from the parity between mental and physical healthcare that is set out – in law – in the NHS constitution. In the last week, I have spoken to a mother at her wits’ end because her daughter is being treated in Scotland when she lives 80 miles south of the border; a young man I persuaded to get help for his anxiety and depression who has been given some pills and told he might get cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) in six months; a student who has dropped out of education after two failed suicide attempts, one of which followed a long wait in a crowded room waiting to see an overstretched university psychiatrist. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:30:05 GMT)

Don’t be fooled – Theresa May’s Brexit plan won’t appease the markets for long | David Blanchflower
The announcement that parliament will get a vote on a final deal was welcome. But the prime minister’s speech does nothing to lift the fog of uncertaintyThe big fear with Theresa May’s Brexit speech was that the pound would tank and that the markets would respond as negatively as they had to most of her previous utterances. The opposite happened, and it rose to $1.24, up almost 3% on the day, after it had already risen on Tuesday morning on news that inflation had reached a two-year high (it fell back a cent today).The news that the markets welcomed so warmly was that both houses of parliament would get a vote on the final deal and that May will not seek partial or associate membership of the European Union. That will prevent a bad deal, forced through by the Brexit-at-any-price Eurosceptics, which might have been on the cards without such a vote. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:14:50 GMT)

Globalisation has made the world a better place | Jim O'Neill
Trade has led to higher living standards in Asia and elsewhere. Are globalisation’s critics against eradicating global poverty?I was recently in beautiful Chile for a Futures Congress, and I had a chance to travel south to the very tip of Latin America. I also recently made a BBC radio documentary called Fixing Globalisation, in which I criss-crossed the UK in search of ideas for improving certain aspects of it and discussed topical issues with well-known experts. In both cases, I saw things that convinced me that it is past time for someone to come to globalisation’s defence.Chile today is Latin America’s richest country, with per capita GDP of about $23,000 – similar to that of central European countries. This is quite an achievement for a country that depends so heavily on copper production, and it sets Chile apart from many of its neighbours. Like many other countries, Chile is facing economic challenges, and its growth rate leaves something to be desired; but it also has many promising opportunities beyond its borders. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:07:59 GMT)

May’s speech sounded like Trump. The only thing missing was the wall | Dan Roberts
There was something very familiar about the prime minister’s seductive mix of nostalgia, bluster and exceptionalism. And the mimicry is mutualFour times on Tuesday Theresa May promised to make Britain great again, and each one gave me goosebumps and flashbacks to covering the election of Donald Trump.Making your country great is, of course, what all politicians aspire to do. But there was something eerily familiar about the seductive combination of nostalgia, bluster and exceptionalism that the prime minister employed in her Brexit speech. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:45:21 GMT)

Why Hamilton is music to the ears of London touts | Tim Dowling
The first US treasury secretary, on whom the hit musical is based, would understand why tickets for the British shows are already reselling for £2,500Tickets for the musical Hamilton, which has garnered many awards and much praise stateside (“highly overrated” – D Trump), have gone on sale in Britain, with the first performance still almost a year away. I’m currently reading the show’s source material: Ron Chernow’s doorstop biography of Alexander Hamilton, the founding father known throughout America as “the guy on the 10 dollar bill”. It’s not in any way overrated, although it would never have occurred to me to make a musical out of it. Related: Hamilton West End tickets appear on resale sites despite anti-tout measures Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 06:00:02 GMT)

Theresa May has called Sturgeon’s bluff over a second Scottish referendum | Alex Bell
The SNP leader threatened to call another independence vote if the UK left the single market. Now she will have to follow through, or lose credibilityIn a period of political intimidation, time has been called on Nicola Sturgeon’s threat to hold a second Scottish independence referendum. Set aside the confusion between access to the single market and staying in parts of the custom union, as Theresa May called for in her speech on the UK’s Brexit aims, it is clear she intends to give up membership of the single market. Related: Nicola Sturgeon has marched her party to the top of the hill. Where next? | Libby Brooks Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:30:09 GMT)

Like many older women, I have an eating disorder. Time to remove the stigma | Gillian Harvey
Anorexia and bulimia are mental illnesses. They may start with a wish to have the perfect body, but a pattern emerges that is akin to drug addictionAs the cookie crumbles in my mouth, delivering a shot of much-needed sugar, a sudden urge flashes across my mind. I am tempted to grab another, and another, before dashing to the loo to purge. Stilling myself, I engage rationally with my feelings and manage to move on without giving in.I’m not always so successful. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:00:03 GMT)

Young people’s mental health services need cash not empty promises | Clare Allan
Theresa May is right – there is a ‘hidden injustice’ in young people’s mental health, but it’s one that has been exacerbated by this governmentIt’s good to talk, and at the moment there’s a lot of talk about mental health and, in particular, about the mental health of young people.I’m thinking, of course, of Theresa May’s recent speech, in which she announced a government green paper on children and young people’s mental health services, mental health first aid training for schools and a few other measures – to be funded apparently out of thin air – because mental health has been “a hidden injustice in this country” for far too long. From whom this injustice has been hidden was not specified. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:00:01 GMT)

Trump’s America needn’t feel threatened by Martin Luther King – it can just rebrand him | Lindy West
You’d think black people would be allowed ownership of the civil rights struggle – but meaning is fluid in the Trump era. Don’t fall for itEach year, on the third Monday in January, US public schools close to observe the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. At some point during the preceding week, most schoolchildren attend a Martin Luther King Jr Day assembly, a pregnant pause between classes designed to remind students of the black trauma and black greatness in America’s DNA, the gravity of King’s sacrifice, and, most pressingly, the persistent relevance of his mission. The purpose is not just to honour, but to remember. A good MLK Day assembly ought to emphasise that our work is not done, particularly this year, just days before America’s first black president hands the nation over to an oligarch endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan who “won” his office largely through voter suppression in black and Latino communities.My stepdaughter’s high school held theirs last week. “We just had an MLK assembly,” she texted me as she filed out of the auditorium, “and it was the biggest steaming pile of shit.” I held out the phone to show my husband. She doesn’t swear in front of us. The featured speaker, she said, was a white man – a classmate’s grandfather – who supposedly saw King deliver his famous I Have a Dream speech. According to my kid, he told the assembled students that Black Lives Matter is “too exclusive”, and “all lives matter” was more in line with King’s message. The room exploded into cheers. My daughter, a mixed-race girl in a mostly white school, refused to clap. (Later, some white friends would make fun of her for it: sure, the speech was “weird”, but why was she so upset?) The white man concluded his remarks by declaring that it would have been King’s dream for the Seattle Seahawks to defeat the Atlanta Falcons in the then-upcoming National Football League playoff game. The assembled crowd nearly collapsed with delight. (The Seahawks lost.) Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 17:22:43 GMT)

Britons 'should learn Polish, Punjabi and Urdu to boost social cohesion'
Learning community languages would aid integration, boost people’s wellbeing and be good for economy, says Cambridge academicThe government is being urged to create more opportunities for British people to learn languages such as Polish, Urdu and Punjabi as a means of improving social cohesion in local communities.Recent inquiries looking into obstacles to social integration in the UK have highlighted the importance of immigrants learning English to enable them to integrate and engage fully in society. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:21:54 GMT)

UK officials advised to read Trump book before seeking US trade deal
Prof Ted Malloch, tipped to be American ambassador to EU, says The Art of the Deal reveals how president-elect’s mind worksThe US academic tipped to be Donald Trump’s ambassador to the EU has told British government advisers they should read the president-elect’s business book The Art of the Deal before starting trade negotiations with the US.Prof Ted Malloch, a long-time supporter of Trump who will fly out on Wednesday to attend his inauguration, is understood to have been speaking to Downing Street staff after Theresa May’s speech on leaving the EU. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:43:07 GMT)

Tate Liverpool to exhibit works of German artists whose lives were shaped by war
Painter Otto Dix and photographer August Sander to have work shown in Liverpool from JuneWorks by two German artists, the painter Otto Dix and the photographer August Sander, who chronicled the rise and fall of the Weimar Republic and were then banned by the Nazis, will be exhibited together for the first time at Tate Liverpool, in an exhibition with eerie contemporary echoes.“It’s a bit political in many ways,” said Andreas Gestrich, director of the German Historical Institute, which has worked with Tate creating a historical timeline for the exhibition, Portraying a Nation. “The Weimar will become a very interesting case in comparison with present day developments, including the rise of populism and the banking crisis.” Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:20:58 GMT)

Grandparents miss out on tax credits that could boost state pension
Little-known scheme could put thousands of pounds back into pensions of grandparents who take time off work to look after grandchildren under 12As many as 100,000 grandparents are missing out on national insurance credits that could boost their state pension by thousands of pounds over the course of their retirement, a former minister has claimed.The former Liberal Democrat MP Steve Webb, now director of policy at mutual insurer Royal London, said a freedom of information request to HM Revenue & Customs had laid bare the “massive non-take-up” of a scheme designed to help grandparents who make sacrifices to help their children get back to work after the birth of a child. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:57:04 GMT)

Woman arrested over teenager's death in Rotherham
26-year-old held on suspicion of assisting an offender in connection with death of girl named locally as Leonne WeeksA 26-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender in connection with the death of a 16-year-old girl in Rotherham.The woman’s arrest on Tuesday night came after the arrest of an 18-year-old man on suspicion of murdering the teenager, named locally as Leonne Weeks. Both remain in custody and are being questioned by police. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:15:43 GMT)

Anthony Grainger shooting: officers were thought to be in danger
36-year-old victim’s hand movement was seen as threat, but inquiry investigates whether it was reaction to use of gas canister by police at the Culcheth operationA police marksman who fatally shot an unarmed man thought his colleagues were in “extreme danger” at the time, a public inquiry has heard.Anthony Grainger, 36, was shot in the chest as he sat in a car in the village of Culcheth, Cheshire, on the evening of 3 March 2012. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 17:49:30 GMT)

Link cash machines may start charging because of row about network fees
Some financial firms using network want to reduce fees they pay to allow charge-free withdrawals from most of 70,000 ATMsThousands of Link cash machines could start charging for withdrawals as a result of a row about fees among members of the ATM network.The dispute centres on a move by some of the financial firms which use the Link network to reduce the fees they pay to allow their customers to withdraw cash from most of Link’s 70,000 cash machines across the UK. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:10:13 GMT)

Books world alarmed by Pearson's sale of stake in Penguin Random House
Management have moved to reassure staff and writers that selling the 47% holding will not affect business, but authors and agents express uneaseAuthors and staff have reacted cautiously to news that Pearson is to sell its stake in Penguin Random House (PRH), the world’s biggest publisher and home to some of the most successful brands in books, among them Fifty Shades of Grey, Jamie Oliver and The Girl on the Train.PRH moved quickly to address fears among staff that the sale of the 47% share to German-owned Bertelsmann would affect jobs. In a statement, global chief executive Markus Dohle promised it would be “business as usual for us”. He added: “Both Pearson and Bertelsmann continue to be very supportive of our strategy and our success, and both have been valued shareholders for us.” Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:29:07 GMT)

Tunisian hotels 'were told to improve security before Sousse attack'
Tui representative tells UK inquest he did not know of letter tourism minister reportedly sent, demanding better securityThe Tunisian minister of tourism reportedly sent a letter to all hotels in his country demanding an upgrade in security in the wake of the Bardo museum terror attack and before the mass shooting in Sousse, an inquest has heard.A 23-year-old extremist, Seifeddine Rezgui, opened fire on the beach outside the Imperial Marhaba hotel in Sousse on 26 June 2015, killing 38 tourists, including 30 Britons. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:41:01 GMT)

EE fined £2.7m for overcharging customers
UK’s biggest mobile phone company has been unable to identify all the users who were billed inaccuratelyMobile phone company EE has been fined £2.7m by Ofcom for overcharging tens of thousands of customers.EE is owned by telecoms giant BT, which acquired the mobile operator last year in a £12.5bn deal. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:45:08 GMT)

Southern rail to run full train service from Tuesday
Company announces restoration of normal timetable after Aslef calls off three strikes next week and overtime ban is liftedSouthern will restore a full train service from next Tuesday after industrial action by drivers was suspended. The company said it would not be possible to reintroduce a full timetable before then because work rosters were issued before Aslef called off three strikes next week and lifted an overtime ban. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:29:20 GMT)

Big freeze in England sees temperatures drop to -6.5C
South-east wakes up to frosty morning but temperatures vary wildly across Britain, with balmier 9C recorded in ScotlandTemperatures in Britain varied by more than 15 degrees on Wednesday morning, with the mercury passing 9C (48.2F) in Scotland and falling to -6.5C (20.3F) in south-east England. Cloudy skies resulted in milder weather in the north, while clear skies in the south led to a much chillier start to the day. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:54:37 GMT)

UK labour market shows signs of slowing
Fewer people are in work and wage growth has slowed, latest figures showBritain’s labour market showed signs of slowing in November as the number of people in work declined and wage growth slowed for the first time since August.The number of people in employment fell by 9,000 to 31.8 million while month-on-month wage growth, including bonuses, dropped from 2.9% to 2.8%. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:32:28 GMT)

Disability groups hail court's support for wheelchair user on bus
Bus drivers must now pressure passengers to make room in ruling described by Doug Paulley as ‘significant cultural change’ Disability rights campaigners have hailed a ruling by the supreme court that bus drivers must try to persuade other passengers to make room for wheelchair users.Drivers may stop the bus “with a view to pressurising or shaming recalcitrant non-wheelchair users to move” if they believe a refusal is unreasonable, the judgment declared. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:07:47 GMT)

Man charged with murdering his children after Birmingham fire
Endris Mohammed accused of killing eight-year-old son and six-year-old daughter, who were found after blaze at their homeA man has been charged with murdering his son and daughter and the attempted murder of their mother.Endris Mohammed, 46, was charged with killing Saros Endris, eight, and six-year-old Leanor Endris, following a fire at their home in Birmingham. He was also charged with attempting to kill their mother, Penil Teklehaimanot. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:43:21 GMT)

Is this Hackney nursery the future for London’s childcare industry?
New Economics Foundation prepares to pilot co-produced nurseries in effort to tackle London’s ‘failing’ childcare modelIn one corner of the large, light room a two-year-old carefully dollops red paint on to an egg box. Elsewhere kids play together, or chat to one of the several adults present, and occasionally a young girl in a long yellow dress sweeps past.This is Grasshoppers in the Park, an east London nursery where professional staff and parents work together to create childcare that is cheaper than a private nursery while having more adults on hand to help. In the UK, childcare eats up 27% (pdf) of family income (more than double the 12% OECD average) and in London average costs are more than a third higher (pdf) than in the rest of England. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:16:34 GMT)

Burberry sales leap 40% as weak pound draws overseas shoppers
Shoppers travel from all regions of the world to stock up on luxury goods as sterling’s fall makes money go furtherBurberry reaped the benefits of a weak pound in the run-up to Christmas as foreign shoppers flocked to the UK to stock up on the brand’s luxury goods.Sales in the UK surged by 40% in the final three months of 2016, boosted by strong demand for Burberry’s Buckle Tote bag, military jackets and knitwear ranges. Wallets personalised with initials were also big sellers, the company said. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:02:51 GMT)

Pearson profit warnings wipe almost £2bn off its value
Education giant plans sale of stake in Penguin Random House to Bertelsmann as it cuts payout to shareholdersAlmost £2bn was wiped from the stock market value of Pearson after the beleaguered FTSE 100 company issued profit warnings for the next two years and said it would cut its payout to shareholders.The group is also putting up for sale its 47% stake in publisher Penguin Random House. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:27:01 GMT)

Middle classes in crisis, IMF's Christine Lagarde tells Davos 2017
IMF head wins support from outgoing US vice-president Joe Biden as she uses American term for working people in demanding action over rising inequalityThe head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, has called for urgent action to tackle a middle-class crisis as she warned that inequality, distrust and a lack of hope were fuelling growing populism.Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Lagarde said she had first highlighted the dangers of rising inequality four years ago but had been ignored. “I hope people will listen now,” she said. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:51:21 GMT)

Julian Assange ready for US extradition, one of his lawyers suggests
WikiLeaks said last week that founder would agree to go to US if Chelsea Manning was freedA lawyer for Julian Assange has indicated that the WikiLeaks founder is ready to face extradition to the US after Barack Obama commuted the sentence of US army whistleblower Chelsea Manning. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 08:58:43 GMT)

AfD politician says Germany should stop atoning for Nazi crimes
Björn Höcke sparks fury by calling for tradition to end and labelling Holocaust memorial a ‘monument of shame’A politician from the rightwing populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) party has broken with the country’s postwar political consensus by calling for a “180-degree turn” from the tradition of remembering and atoning for the Nazi era.In a speech in a beer hall in Dresden, Björn Höcke, who leads the party in the eastern state of Thuringia, railed against Germany’s decade-long tradition of acknowledging the crimes of the National Socialist era, describing the Holocaust memorial in Berlin as a “monument of shame”. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:31:01 GMT)

Police officer and Bedouin killed in home demolition clashes
Officials and residents offer conflicting accounts of incident, which followed pre-dawn raid in village of Umm al-HiranA controversial Israeli police operation to demolish buildings in a Bedouin village in the country’s south to make way for a new Jewish town has ended with two fatalities – including an Israeli police officer – amid sharply conflicting versions of what occurred.The pre-dawn raid by hundreds of armed police on the village of Umm al-Hiran in Negev – regarded as illegal by the Israeli courts – ended with a Bedouin man shot dead in his car and a police officer fatally run over. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:58:10 GMT)

Senators call for investigation of Tom Price's healthcare investments
Democrats raise concern over health secretary nominee, who bought and sold health-related stocks while he was an influential voice on healthcare policyDonald Trump’s choice for health secretary, Tom Price, faces his first congressional grilling on Wednesday, hours after leading Democrats called for an investigation of the congressman’s investments. Price bought and sold health-related stocks while he was an influential voice on healthcare policy in the House of Representatives, advocating for and against bills that affected health companies’ fortunes. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 15:44:31 GMT)

Germany denies rebuffing Theresa May over citizens' rights deal
Angela Merkel’s spokeswoman says all EU 27 states agree there can be no negotiations before article 50 is triggeredGermany has denied it rebuffed an attempt by Theresa May to seal an early deal on citizens’ rights post-Brexit, and reiterated that there was “complete unanimity” among the EU’s 27 member states that the subject could only be discussed once Britain had triggered article 50. Related: 'Europe's fate is in our hands': Angela Merkel's defiant reply to Trump Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 15:39:35 GMT)

Egyptian judge gives four people suspended sentences over FGM death
Mayar Mohamed Moussa, 17, died last year after her mother took her to a private hospital for the procedureEgyptian experts have criticised lenient sentencing in what is only the country’s second ever prosecution for female genital mutilation (FGM) procedure. The four accused were given suspended prison sentences and fines following the death of 17-year-old Mayar Mohamed Moussa after undergoing FGM. Related: First doctor convicted of FGM death in Egypt only spent three months in jail Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 14:45:31 GMT)

Edward Snowden's leave to remain in Russia extended for three years
Former US intelligence contractor’s Russian lawyer also says Snowden can apply for country’s citizenship from next yearEdward Snowden’s leave to remain in Russia has been extended for three years, his lawyer has said, as a Russian official said the whistleblower would not be extradited to the US even if relations improved under the incoming president, Donald Trump. Related: Intelligence experts urge Obama to end Edward Snowden's 'untenable exile' Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:34:33 GMT)

Indigenous Canadians face a crisis as climate change eats away island home
Rising sea levels mean that Lennox Island has lost more than 400 acres in just a few generations. Now its First Nations community wonders if it has a futureHis hands tucked tightly in the pockets of his jeans, Gilbert Sark nodded at the ice-covered bay stretched out before him.Decades ago, his grandfather – at the time one of the few in this First Nations community to own a truck – would spend winters ferrying people across the frozen bay to Prince Edward Island. One wintry day, the truck hit a patch of soft ice, sending it plunging into the frigid waters below. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:00:03 GMT)

Turkey seeks arrest of 243 military personnel in ongoing crackdown
The suspects are being sought because they used a messaging app the government claims was used by coup plotters Turkish prosecutors have issued arrest warrants for 243 members of the military in 54 provinces across the country, in an investigation related to July’s failed coup, the state-run Anadolu news agency said. Anadolu said on Wednesday the suspects were being sought on suspicion they were using Bylock, an encrypted smartphone messaging app the government says was used by the network of Fethullah Gülen, the US-based cleric accused by Ankara of orchestrating the attempted coup. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 06:52:33 GMT)

Saudi Arabia to continue ban on 'immoral, atheistic' cinema
The head of the country’s religious authority has said that legalising cinemas and concerts would ‘open doors to evil’Proposals to reopen cinemas in Saudi Arabia have been strongly dismissed by the current head of the country’s religious authority. “Motion pictures may broadcast shameless, immoral, atheistic or rotten films,” said the grand mufti, Sheikh Abdulaziz al-Sheikh, on his weekly television programme. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:01:42 GMT)

'We will keep fighting': end of MH370 search a blow to Australian victims' families
Eight Australian citizens or residents were among 239 people on the Malaysia Airlines flight when it was lost on 8 March 2014The conclusion of the underwater search for the wreck of MH370 is another blow to the families of Australian victims, as the third anniversary of the plane’s disappearance nears.Six Australian citizens and two residents were among the 239 people on board the Malaysia Airlines flight bound for Beijing from Kuala Lumpur when it was lost on 8 March 2014. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:41:40 GMT)

Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos sues Donald Trump for defamation
Suit calls president-elect sexual predator as Zervos demands he ‘vindicate her reputation’ by admitting to allegations that he groped herA former contestant from The Apprentice is suing Donald Trump for defamation in relation to claims he groped and aggressively kissed her and then called her a liar.Summer Zervos filed the lawsuit on Tuesday demanding that the president-elect “vindicate her reputation” by admitting the allegations are true. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:52:35 GMT)

Japan to end tourists' toilet trouble with standardised buttons
System of eight symbols is designed to save Olympic visitors from unnerving surprises using Tokyo’s high-tech WCsNavigating the array of buttons on Japan’s high-tech toilets can be a disconcerting experience for the uninitiated, who, expecting to hear a familiar flushing sound, are instead subjected to a sudden, and unwanted, cleansing of the nether regions.As Japan prepares for an influx of overseas visitors during the 2019 rugby World Cup and the Tokyo Olympics the following year, the country’s sanitation industry has agreed to standardise pictograms on toilets so users know for certain if they are about to receive a blast of warm air or a jet of water. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:47:04 GMT)

Amazon patent hints at self-driving car plans
Reversible lanes pose problem for autonomous cars and trucks, but Amazon has worked out a possible solutionAmazon is working on self-driving cars, according to a new patent that deals with the complex task of navigating reversible lanes.The patent, filed in November 2015 and granted on Tuesday, covers the problem of how to deal with reversible lanes, which change direction depending on the bulk of the traffic flow. This type of lane is typically used to manage commuter traffic into and out of cities, particularly in the US. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10:21:18 GMT)

At least four killed in gunfight in Mexican resort of Cancun
Deaths occurred when gunmen opened fire at government offices in the beach resort days after five died at a nearby music festivalAt least four people have been killed after gunmen opened fire at government offices in the Mexican beach resort of Cancun, a day after at least five people died in a shooting at a music festival nearby. Rodolfo del Angel Campos, chief of police for the state of Quintana Roo, said gunfire broke out at the state attorney general’s office in Cancun, a city that is one of the most popular seaside destinations for foreign tourists in Mexico. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 04:33:45 GMT)

Xi Jinping signals China will champion free trade if Trump builds barriers
Chinese president defends globalisation at WEF in Davos, saying there will be no winners in a trade warChina’s president, Xi Jinping, has delivered a strong defence of globalisation, serving notice to Donald Trump that Beijing will seek to usurp America’s traditional role as the champion of free trade and open markets.Xi used an hour-long address to the World Economic Forum (WEF) to take a number of sideswipes at the US president-elect, attacking Trump’s protectionist views without mentioning him by name. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 03:19:54 GMT)

Barack Obama transfers $500m to Green Climate Fund in attempt to protect Paris deal
New instalment leaves $2bn owing, with Donald Trump expected to cease any further paymentsBarack Obama has heeded calls to help secure the future of the historic Paris agreement by transferring a second $500m instalment to the Green Climate Fund, just three days before he leaves office.The fund was a key aspect of the Paris agreement signed in 2015, which aims to keep global warming “well below” 2C and aspires to keep warming to 1.5C. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 01:06:41 GMT)

Taiwan carries out drills amid rising fears of Chinese invasion
The island’s armed forces test combat readiness, amid deteriorating relations between Beijing and TaipeiThe Taiwanese military is preparing for a Chinese invasion as fears grow about the impact that future Donald Trump policies towards Beijing may have on regional stability.A two-day military drill that began on Tuesday simulated an attack by the People’s Liberation Army across the 112-mile (180km) Taiwan strait that separates the mainland from the island nation of 23 million, amid deteriorating relations between Beijing and Taipei. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:08:58 GMT)

NSW bushfires: two rescued by helicopter in Hunter Valley
Reports of property lost amid deteriorating conditions near Tarago and in the Hunter regionA mother and daughter have been rescued from a burning property by helicopter and homes have reportedly been destroyed as a bushfire burnt out of control in the New South Wales Hunter region.The woman and young girl were spotted by a Rural Fire Service rapid response crew in Kurri Kurri on Wednesday afternoon before being taken to Cessnock airport in distress. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 08:25:23 GMT)

Obama commutes sentence for political prisoner Oscar López Rivera
López Rivera, whose commutation was announced with 208 others, has been incarcerated for 35 years for his role in fighting for Puerto Rico’s independenceBarack Obama has commuted the sentence of Oscar López Rivera, a victory for the Puerto Rican independence activist who is considered to be one of the world’s longest-serving political prisoners.In his final days in office, Obama has issued a record number of pardons and commutations, including granting the release of Chelsea Manning on Tuesday, the US army soldier who became one of the most famous whistleblowers in modern times. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 22:55:14 GMT)

Islamic State surrounds military airport in Deir ez-Zor, eastern Syria
Isis breaks through government lines and takes control of area where World Food Programme’s airdrops landIslamic State fighters have broken through government defensive lines in the Syrian city of Deir ez-Zor, surrounding a military airport and cutting off food supplies for roughly a quarter of a million civilians in what could become a major humanitarian disaster.Deir ez-Zor in eastern Syria is divided between the militants and the government of Bashar al-Assad. The areas controlled by the government have long been under siege but were sustained by supplies flown in to the nearby military airport and by airdrops from the World Food Programme. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 17:52:16 GMT)

Putin says those behind Trump dossier are 'worse than prostitutes'
Russian president dismisses alleged links between US president-elect and Moscow and says sex claims are ‘obvious fake’Vladimir Putin has dismissed the dossier published last week about alleged links between Moscow and Donald Trump, describing the people who ordered it as “worse than prostitutes”. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:58:30 GMT)

Campaigners call on EU to halve food waste by 2030
The initiative, which would apply to the UK if passed, would wipe out 44m tonnes of food waste every yearPeople are being urged to support calls by a major pan-European group to halve ‘farm to fork’ food waste in Europe by 2030, on the eve of a landmark vote later this month.The European parliament’s environment committee will vote on new regulations on 24 January, which are set to shape the next 15 years of EU food waste policy and have the potential to be the most ambitious, legally binding target on food waste in the world. Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 00:01:18 GMT)

European judges uphold UK right to impose whole-life jail sentences
Judges in Strasbourg reject claim by convicted killer that his sentence amounts to inhuman and degrading treatmentEuropean human rights judges have confirmed the right of British courts to impose “life must mean life” sentences in the most heinous cases of murder.The ruling by the European court of human rights (ECHR) resolves the issue of whole-life sentences, which was cited by the former justice secretary Chris Grayling as one of the key reasons he had proposed a new British bill of rights to give the UK courts and parliament the final say in such matters. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 15:25:14 GMT)

EU leaders welcome May speech but urge caution
European officials see more clarity in PM’s Brexit speech but warn proposals to turn UK into tax haven will create a ‘disagreeable situation’European leaders have given a cautious welcome to Theresa May’s speech, while sounding warnings on what they perceived as the prime minister’s threat to undermine the EU on tax if the UK is shut off from the single market.Donald Tusk, the president of the European council, summed up May’s speech in a tweet: “Sad process, surrealistic times, but at least more realistic announcement on Brexit. EU27 united and ready to negotiate after article 50.” Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 16:34:45 GMT)

Top diplomatic negotiator in Cuba warns Trump: 'aggression doesn't work'
Exclusive: Josefina Vidal, who has led the island’s negotiating team since 2013, says Cuba will not be cowed by the incoming president’s bluster and threatsSenior Cuban negotiators say the island will not be cowed by intimidation and bluster from Donald Trump, despite the incoming US president’s threat to rekindle cold war animosities.“Aggression, pressure, conditions, impositions do not work with Cuba. This is not the way to attempt to have even a minimally civilised relationship with Cuba,”Josefina Vidal, a foreign ministry department head, told the Guardian. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 09:00:34 GMT)

Moon Express raises $20m for 2017 voyage to the moon
Robot spacecraft planned to land on moon’s surface this yearCompany will become first private enterprise to travel beyond Earth’s orbitA US company has secured funding to become the first private entity to travel to the moon, with a planned 2017 voyage that will be an international milestone in space exploration. Moon Express, a Florida-based firm, said it had raised $20m in financing, which will allow it to send a robotic spacecraft to the moon’s surface later this year. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 21:59:17 GMT)

Chinese discard hundreds of cycles-for-hire in giant piles
It was hoped bike-hire schemes would cut pollution and congestion but it seems some users just want to ride and dumpIt has been billed as a hi-tech bike-sharing boom that entrepreneurs hope will make them rich while simultaneously transforming China’s traffic-clogged cities.But, occasionally, dreams can turn sour. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 10:09:36 GMT)

Istanbul nightclub attack: suspected gunman 'had training in Afghanistan'
Man held by Turkish authorities is named as Abdulgadir Masharipov, born in Uzbekistan in 1983A man suspected of shooting dead 39 people in a New Year’s Eve attack on a nightclub in Istanbul is an Uzbek national who trained in Afghanistan, Turkish officials have said. Related: Istanbul nightclub attack caps off dreadful year for Turkey Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 18:53:53 GMT)

@Ivanka from Brighton's message for Trump: 'Please pay attention to climate change'
Woman whom president-elect mistook for his daughter on Twitter uses her 15 minutes of fame to speak out on environmentA digital consultant from Brighton whom Donald Trump mistook for his daughter on Twitter says she is more concerned by the prospect of a climate change denier in the White House than someone who makes slip-ups on social media.Ivanka Majic, 42, a former digital director for the Labour party, said it was “very surreal” to discover that the president-elect had retweeted a message intending to praise his daughter, Ivanka Trump, that included her Twitter name instead. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 15:52:44 GMT)

Man arrested after apparent attempt to slap former French PM
Manuel Valls was on election tour when incident occurred with security guard wrestling 18-year-old suspect to the floorAn 18-year-old reached out apparently to slap former prime minister Manuel Valls when he was on an election tour in France’s Brittany region on Tuesday and was wrestled to the ground by a security guard, a video by local media showed. Valls, 54, who was walking past a group of people in the town of Lamballe after coming out of the municipal offices, appeared to first shake hands with the youth who said something and then appeared to try to slap the former prime minister. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 20:18:55 GMT)

Germany's top court rules against ban on far-right NDP
Court blocks attempt to outlaw party saying it presents insufficient threat to democracy despite similarities with NazisGermany’s constitutional court has said the far-right National Democratic party resembles Adolf Hitler’s Nazi party, but ruled against banning it because it presents no threat to democracy.The country’s 16 federal states had pressed for the ban amid rising support for rightwing groups that has been stoked by popular resentment over the influx of large numbers of migrants. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 15:18:14 GMT)

Air India introduces female-only rows to tackle harassment
Country’s national airline acts after recent incidents of men allegedly groping passengers and cabin staffIndia’s national airline will designate two rows on every flight as female-only.Air India made the announcement after two incidents in the past month of men allegedly groping cabin staff or other passengers. Continue reading...
(Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:39:12 GMT)

The west was built on racism. It's time we faced that – video
Dead white men are revered by many as responsible for the advancement of civilisation, says sociology professor Kehinde Andrews. But, he argues, this so-called progress came at the expense of millions of people of colour. Global inequality is not an accident, he argues – it is designed to keep the hierarchy of race intact Continue reading...
(Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:00:01 GMT)

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