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What World Thinks

BBC News

Brexit: Amber Rudd urges MPs to 'forge a consensus'
Politicians must compromise and find a plan that a majority in Parliament can support, minister says.

Obamacare: Texas court rules key health law is unconstitutional
The challenge from a coalition of 20 US states is now likely to go to the US Supreme Court.

Australia recognises West Jerusalem as Israeli capital
PM Scott Morrison says Australia will not immediately move its embassy from Tel Aviv.

Susie Goodall: British sailor would attempt Golden Globe Race again 'in a heartbeat'
Susie Goodall says she would attempt the Golden Globe Race again "in a heartbeat", despite having to be rescued in the Pacific Ocean.

Anglesey school plea not to buy staff Christmas gifts
Buying teachers at Rhosybol community school a festive treat will not get you on Santa's nice list.

Katowice UN climate talks extended due to sticking points
Rows continue over the issue of paying poorer countries for damages caused by rising temperatures.

Twenty-eight injured in Lisbon tram crash
A tram derails and overturns in the Portuguese capital, but no serious injuries are reported.

Drone 50ft from hitting plane at Stansted
The drone was being flown at more than 20 times the permissible height, close to a Boeing 737.

Sex abuse victim Natasha Mina: 'Kickboxing gave me strength'
Natasha Mina's father was jailed for 12 years in October after abusing her and three other people.

Newcastle man charged with planning act of terror
The 33-year-old was arrested as part of an ongoing investigation by counter-terror police.

Sark Christmas lights on after blackout fear
An island threatened with blackout just a fortnight ago is celebrating the switching on of its Christmas lights.

Sarah Papenheim: US student stabbed to death in Rotterdam
A young American who came to Europe after a family tragedy is stabbed to death in her student complex.

The Papers: May and Juncker clash and 'Brexit charge'
Saturday's front pages feature Brexit and the EU's plan to charge Brits travelling to Europe.

LGBTQ Christmas charity sends cards to the lonely
We all like getting Christmas post, but what if you didn't have anyone to send you so much as a card?

Week in pictures: 8 - 14 December 2018
A selection of the best news photographs from around the world, taken over the past week.

Pigs-in-blankets turned into ice cream at Hitchin parlour
The festive flavour has been created at an ice cream parlour in Hertfordshire.

Smart ships using the wind and air bubbles to save fuel
Clever ways to make ships more efficient, including blowing tiny bubbles under their hulls.

Brexit: Has anything about May's deal changed?
It's been a busy week in British politics, from Parliamentary squabbles to meetings with European leaders, and a confidence vote.

Royal Family: Christmas card images by Harry, Meghan, William and Kate
A new wedding picture of Harry and Meghan and a family snap of the Cambridges are among the greetings.

Kanye West vs Drake: What's the story behind their war of words (and emojis)?
Everything you need to know about Kanye West's astonishing Twitter tirade against Drake.

Strictly Come Dancing final: What makes a winner?
Is there a formula to how a celebrity wins Strictly Come Dancing?

BBC News Channel
BBC coverage of latest developments

Strasbourg shooting: Why known extremists can carry out terror attacks
It's often the case that jihadist attacks are carried out by individuals already identified as a risk.

Strictly Come Dancing finalists discuss their ups, downs and future plans
Ashley, Faye, Joe and Stacey look back on the past 14 weeks and ahead to Saturday's Strictly final.

Capita Army recruitment delays: 'I felt I had given up my dream'
Prospective recruits face delays and disappointment under the outsourced recruitment process.

Do autistic people 'get' jokes?
A new BBC podcast, 1800 Seconds on Autism, aims to dispel that no-humour myth, among other assumptions, with razor-sharp wit.

Yemen war: Can ceasefire deal finally bring peace?
Yemen's truce deal is fraught with risk, but it brings the country a step to closer to elusive peace.

Christmas Jumper Day: Who wins, retailers or charity?
The festive campaign has become an annual event, but who's the real winner - retailers or charity?

Man City's De Bruyne was 'exhausted' last season - Guardiola
Manchester City midfielder Kevin de Bruyne finished last season "exhausted", according to his manager Pep Guardiola.

Levein 'embarrased' by defeat and says Hearts made Livi 'look like PSG'
Craig Levein is "embarrassed" at his side's 5-0 defeat by Livingston and says they made the hosts look like Paris St-Germain.

Sterling comments 'a game changer' on racism in football
BBC Sport's Hugh Woozencroft debates with three black sports journalists the issues raised by Raheem Sterling's comments on race, football and the media.

Laura Kenny, Katie Archibald, Neah Evans and Ellie Dickinson win gold in women's team pursuit
Laura Kenny, Katie Archibald, Neah Evans and Ellie Dickinson win gold in the women's team pursuit at the World Track Cycling World Cup in London.

Australia v India: Virat Kohli stands firm for tourists in Perth
India captain Virat Kohli makes an unbeaten 82 to lead his side's recovery on an absorbing second day of the second Test in Australia.

'He doesn't make many mistakes but I could get to him' - Fielding ready to upset Alvarez
Rocky Fielding says he will relish the chance to upset the odds when he takes on Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez at Madison Square Gardens.

Mohamed Salah named BBC African Footballer of the Year 2018
Egypt and Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah is voted the BBC African Footballer of the Year 2018.

Called the wrong name at work? Awkward...
What should you do when someone gets your name wrong in the professional sphere?

The bar where your cash is worthless
As more firms around the world refuse to take cash, does this mean the end for notes and coins?

Love Islanders' Instagram tips on how to make money from #ad
Each paid post is making reality TV stars like Paul Knops and Jamie Jewitt hundreds of pounds - but how?

Nasa's Jupiter mission Juno reveals giant polar storms
Stunning images from Nasa's Jupiter "JunoCam" show huge, "endless storms" at the planet's poles.

The secret life of a fantasy shopper
Some people take window-shopping to the next level. Sue Elliott-Nicholls describes the escapist allure of a posh fitting room.

Mrs Wilson: Still searching for the real Alexander Wilson
As the BBC drama Mrs Wilson ends, Alexander Wilson's family don't know what to believe, his grandson writes.

Triple child murders: The lodger who destroyed a family
David McGreavy murdered and mutilated three young children 45 years ago, a crime that remains as shocking as it was inexplicable.

CNN

Most Nazis escaped justice. Now Germany wants to convict those who got away

Impeachment of Trump: How it might work (if it happened)

Trump names new acting chief of staff
Mick Mulvaney, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, will become the acting White House chief of staff replacing John Kelly, President Donald Trump announced on Friday.

Federal judge strikes down Obamacare

How May can get out of her Brexit hell

Why there is no easy path in the Brexit deal
CNN's Richard Quest takes a look at the different Brexit deal options facing the UK government, after Prime Minister Theresa May pulled the plug on a parliamentary vote.

Doors are slamming shut for Huawei around the world
Huawei is coming under pressure in two more key European markets — the latest in a series of problems the Chinese company faces around the world.

Australia recognizes West Jerusalem as capital of Israel
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Saturday that his government recognizes West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

France braces for fifth weekend of protests
France is braced for a fifth consecutive weekend of "gilets jaunes" or "yellow vest" protests this Saturday, despite concessions this week by French President Emmanuel Macron.

Why Gilet Jaunes are going after Macron
French protestors, known as the Gilets Jaunes, have scored concessions from President Emmanuel Macron, proving more effective than political parties. This is why the group is protesting against Macron.

Brits must pay to enter Europe after Brexit
In post-Brexit Britain, trips to the European Union will get a little more expensive for millions of Brits in search of a continental break.

Dams spell disaster for SE Asian nation
First came a boom, shortly followed by the sound of something bursting. Then, a giant wave — big enough to submerge an area the size of Paris in 15 feet of water — washed across southeastern Laos, ripping villages apart, swallowing homes, and dispersing thousands of people.

Climate talks go right down to the wire
The UN climate talks in Poland -- an attempt to save the world from disastrous levels of global warming -- are sputtering toward a conclusion after two weeks of discord.

Gandhi statue removed over 'racist' writings
A controversial statue of Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi has been pulled down at the University of Ghana following protests and petitions for its removal.

Actress' secret $9.5M settlement from CBS
Eliza Dushku reportedly received a confidential settlement of $9.5 million from CBS after she accused one of her co-stars of harassment.

New electric cars can recharge in 15 mins
The next generation of electric cars could charge their batteries in the time it takes to fill up at a gas station.

Baseball legend offers to be chief of staff
The search for chief of staff turns up lots of laughs. CNN's Jeanne Moos reports that even critters are being proposed.

First they were raped, then blamed. Now they fight back
"I've been raped," Manal Issa shouts as she staggers down a street in Beirut.

How 3D printers are transforming flying
The next time you hop on a plane, there's a good chance some of its parts will have been made using a printer.

'Most competitive championship' is back
Now entering its fifth season, Formula E feels a world away from the sport that first appeared for its inaugural championship in 2014.

Why Prada pulled its products

Backdraft explosion caught on camera
A five-alarm fire in Queens, New York, resulted in a backdraft explosion. 12 people were injured, including seven firefighters.

The year's brightest comet streaks by Earth this weekend

Largest known diamond in North America found
A 552-carat yellow diamond was recently unearthed in Canada -- the largest ever found in North America.

Miss USA sorry for comments about Asians
Miss USA has apologized after comments she made about two fellow Miss Universe contestants' English-language abilities sparked backlash online.

Jewish cemetery vandalized
Tombstones and a Holocaust memorial in a Jewish cemetery outside Strasbourg, France, were vandalized with anti-Semitic graffiti earlier this week.

Meghan makes surprise awards appearance
Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, surprised guests at the British Fashion Awards Monday night, as she made an unexpected appearance to honor her wedding dress designer, Clare Waight Keller.

Ancient Roman statue discovered in margarine tub
An ancient statue of the Roman deity Minerva was discovered in a margarine tub, where it had been languishing for years.

'Downton Abbey' movie: Get a first look
"Downton Abbey" fans finally have their first look at the upcoming feature film based on the series.

Facebook: Bug exposed 6.8M users' photos
Facebook announced on Friday that the social network had exposed the private photos of millions of users without their permission.

Foul-mouthed Santa horrifies parents
Organizers of a Christmas event have apologized to outraged parents after a fire alarm reportedly prompted Santa Claus to burst out of his grotto, rip off his beard and scream at children to "get the f**k out."

World's second-largest arms producer
Russia's arms industry has become the second-largest in the world, knocking the UK into third place, according to a new report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

Vladimir Putin's Stasi ID card found
The discovery of an East German secret police ID card wouldn't normally attract much attention, but things get a lot more interesting when it's Vladimir Putin's.

Boeing launches groundbreaking BBJ 777X jet

China's skyscraper boom sets world record
China built more skyscrapers in 2018 than anywhere else in the world -- or at any other time in history, according to data released by the Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) on Wednesday.

New trains to change how we travel

The $14M 'Super Bowl of show jumping'
After more than 500 hours of competition across three continents, 13 countries and 16 cities, the world's top show jumpers are getting ready for the "Super Bowl of show jumping."

West Africa's first state-run rehab clinic
Inside the grounds of Fann hospital in Senegal, men and women form a substantial queue.

10 cars that will rule the roads in 2019

Sex tips ... from a Buddhist monk?
Could advice from a former Buddhist monk help improve your sex life? That's the implication of "The Passion Book: A Tibetan Guide to Love and Sex," originally written in 1938 by Tibetan Buddhist monk Gendun Chopel.

Why Felipe Massa just couldn't stay retired
After 15 thrilling and intensely demanding years in Formula One, Felipe Massa hung up his racing helmet for good at the end of last season.

The new mysteries unraveling in Egypt
Like the legendary curse of the mummy, ancient Egypt refuses to stay buried in the past. Every so often it comes back to life -- in the 1920s with the discovery of King Tut's tomb; in the 1970s with the global tour of those golden masks; and most recently with a flurry of astonishing discoveries using 21st-century archaeological techniques.

Why people are becoming allergic to meat
I am on my way to meet Tami McGraw, who lives with her husband and the youngest of their kids in a sprawling development of old trees and wide lawns just south of Chapel Hill. Before I reach her, McGraw emails. She wants to feed me when I get there:

Most Nazis escaped justice. Now Germany wants to convict those who got away

How May can get out of her Brexit hell

Food you eat could help save the planet
There's a lot of advice out there on how we can reduce our carbon footprint on the planet. But what about the food we eat?

See Royal couples' Xmas card photos
See the stylish Christmas card photos released by United Kingdom's royal couples.

Julian Zelizer: Why Mulvaney can't save Trump's chaos presidency
President Donald Trump has announced his final choice in the chief of staff sweepstakes: Budget Director Mick Mulvaney. The announcement, made predictably via Twitter on Friday, ends more than a week of "Apprentice"-like scrambling to figure out who would replace outgoing Chief of Staff John Kelly. Nick Ayers (Vice President Mike Pence's former chief of staff), Newt Gingrich, Chris Christie and David Bossie were all in the mix.

Paul Begala: A refugee child's death, a heartbreaking echo at Christmas
I love the holiday season. The family togetherness. The Christmas cards, the pictures, sent by friends, of their kids. Adorable—and almost as perfect as my own.

Al Jazeera

'No teeth', Qatar FM says GCC needs to enforce its own rules
Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani seeks regional help and GCC reform to end crisis.

Sri Lanka's disputed Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigns
Controversial leader signs resignation letter, signalling an end to a seven-week long political crisis.

TrustWHO: The Business of Global Health
Investigating the hidden motives behind actions of the World Health Organisation and the real powers that control it.

Suspected food poisoning kills 11 at Indian temple ceremony
More than 130 people are recovering from poisoning after eating contaminated vegetables and rice on Friday.

May tries to renegotiate Brexit deal in Brussels talks
May survived a no-confidence vote triggered by her own party's MPs, but her hopes of reopening negotiations on the Brexit deal seem likely to founder on the continent.

Migrant caravan faces obstacles, but border walls are not new
A fortified border, added personnel and a new technology have slowed the movement of asylum seekers over the past two decades.

Abused, harassed, rejected from society: Glasgow's homeless women
Women who sleep rough have no escape from sexual violence and struggle to deal with basic menstrual hygiene.

Ukraine set to establish new church, secure split from Russia
Meeting in Kiev's Saint Sophia's Cathedral aims to unite branches of the Orthodox church into a single independent body.

Resolutions vs reality: Facebook's disastrous 2018
Facebook's end-of-year wrap glossed over most of its own bad news. Plus, US immigration raids caught on camera.

US federal judge rules Obamacare is 'unconstitutional'
A Texas judge rules in favour of a case brought by Republican state attorneys general and governor.

Afghanistan hosts talks with Pakistan and China
Foreign ministers meet in Kabul to discuss regional economic development, trade and security.

Who will be Nigeria's next president?
The spokesmen for President Muhammadu Buhari and the challenger, Atiku Abubakar, debate who should lead the country.

Britons to pay for visa-free travel to EU after Brexit
British travellers visiting the EU will have to pay seven euros for a three-year pre-travel authorisation after Brexit.

Yemen: 'Parties decide to resolve a conflict, not UN'
UN special envoy for Yemen Martin Griffiths says the warring sides in Yemen now have 'a chance to do the right thing'.

Nigeria army lifts ban on UNICEF amid spying allegations
Army suspended UNICEF operations early Friday accusing the agency's staff of spying for Boko Haram.

Australia recognises West Jerusalem as Israel capital
Prime Minister Scott Morrison says embassy will not move until a peace settlement is achieved.

From Brexit to Yellow Vests, a common thread of economic hardship
Economists say many issues currently plaguing Europe are rooted in policies that pushed citizens to the financial brink.

Trump taps budget director Mulvaney as acting chief of staff
Mick Mulvaney will take over from John Kelly, who will step down from the post in early January.

Iran, Russia, Turkey to meet UN envoy next week on Syria: UN
Staffan de Mistura will hold high-level talks next week to work on setting up a constitutional committee, the UN said.

How will Trump respond to the Senate's rebuke of Saudi Arabia?
US Senators voted to end support for the Saudi-UAE coalition fighting in Yemen.

'MPs don't know what they want to do': Q&A on UK's Brexit crisis
As a tumultuous week in British politics draws to a close, Brexit expert Anand Menon discusses what might happen next.

First clashes hit Yemen's Hodeidah since truce deal: residents
Clashes break out in the Red Sea port city a day after a UN-brokered truce was reached by the warring parties.

Palestinian teen killed by Israeli forces during Ramallah protest
Mahmoud Nakhleh, 18, was shot in the abdomen during a protest against the Israeli army in the al-Jalazun refugee camp.

J&J stocks plunge after report says firm knew about asbestos
Reuters report says Johnson & Johnson knew for decades that cancer-causing asbestos lurked in its Baby Powder.

UN monitors needed to observe Yemen ceasefire, UN envoy says
Special Envoy Griffiths called for a robust truce monitoring system to oversee compliance with the ceasefire in Hodeidah

MercoPress - South American Agency

Paraguayan judge refuses to halt Uber and clone company MUV - battle with taxis continues

The “yellow swarm” took to the streets of Asunción to protest against Uber and clone company MUV. Judge Letizia Paredes Friday denied the request submitted by Paraguayan taxi driver unions to keep carpool services Uber and MUV from operating but she still allowed the petition for an amparo remedy to be processed by the courts, it was reported.

UN forecasts 2 million Venezuelans will emigrate in 2019

“The reasons for these people leaving goes from sheer hunger to violence and lack of security,” said UNHCR's Filippo Grandi. Around two million more Venezuelans are expected to flee their country during 2019, according to a United Nations forecast released Friday in Geneva. If true, the total number of Venezuelan migrants could reach 5.3 million a year from now.

Falklands-Buenos Aires link: Argentina awards license and route to low-cost airline

Resolution 1087/2018 authorizes FlyBondi Air Lines to exploit commercial and non commercial domestic and international flights of passengers, freight and mail The Argentine government awarded low-cost airline Flybondi a 15-year license to exploit 284 domestic and international routes, including one that potentially can link Buenos Aires directly with the Falkland Islands.

Investigation into the death of Guatemalan child in the custody of US Border Patrol

According to US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the girl was apprehended with her father for illegally entering the country on the evening of 6 December An investigation has been launched after a seven-year-old girl died while in the custody of the US Border Patrol. The Guatemalan child, named as Jakelin Caal Maquin, was detained last week after crossing the US-Mexico border with her father, officials say.

Euro falls on disappointing French and German economic prospects

The December Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) composite figure for the French economy was down sharply at 49.3, from November's reading of 54.2. The Euro has fallen against the dollar after disappointing French and German economic surveys dismayed the markets. In France, private sector business activity contracted for the first time in two and a half years as the "gilets Jaunes" protests took their toll.

Brexit: Britons will have to pay €7 every three years to travel to EU countries

Citizens of EU countries - which currently includes British people - are able to travel anywhere in the EU Britons will have to pay €7 (£6.30) every three years to travel to EU countries, as a consequence of Brexit. The European Commission has confirmed that while UK travelers will not need a visa, they will need to apply for and buy another document.

Johnson & Johnson shares plunge following on Reuters' report of asbestos in talcum powder

The report comes as the company faces thousands of lawsuits claiming that its talc products caused cancer. Shares in Johnson & Johnson plunged more than 10% on Friday, after Reuters reported that the US pharmaceutical giant had known about asbestos tainting its talcum powder for decades.

Australia will recognize West Jerusalem as Israel's capital, but won't move from Tel Aviv until a peace deal

“Australia now recognizes West Jerusalem, being the seat of the Knesset and many of the institutions of government, is the capital of Israel” said PM Scott Morrison Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has confirmed that his government will recognize West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. However, he said Australia's embassy would not move from Tel Aviv, until a peace settlement was achieved. He added Australia also recognized the aspirations of the Palestinians to a state with a capital in East Jerusalem.

Apple pledges to build a "Silicon Valley" in Texas: US$ 1bn investment

Apple already employs 6,200 staff at its current facilities in Austin, making it the company's biggest base outside its home at Cupertino in California's Silicon Valley Apple has announced plans to build a new campus in Austin, Texas, saying the project will involve a one-billion-dollar investment. The company already has an existing base in the city. The iPhone-maker said it expected the latest move would eventually make it in the state's capital biggest private employer.

A hard Brexit will leave the UK "near bankrupt" and "the closure of quite a few businesses"

Sir Richard (center) was speaking from the Mojave Desert in California after attending the latest Virgin Galactic space launch Sir Richard Branson has warned that the UK will be left "near bankrupt" in the event of a hard Brexit. He told the BBC he was "absolutely certain" that leaving the EU without a deal would lead to the closure of "quite a few British businesses".

EU Newsroom

Main results of the European Council
The European Council on 13-14 December 2018 adopted conclusions on the MFF, the single market, migration and other items, namely external relations, climate change, security and defence, disinformation, the fight against racism and xenophobia and citizens' consultations. 

Plenary highlights: Japan deal, Sakharov Prize, terrorism, budget
MEPs backed a trade deal with Japan, awarded the Sakharov Prize to Oleg Sentsov and paid tribute to the victims of Tuesday’s terror attack in Strasbourg during December’s plenary session. 

Main results of the Special meeting of the European Council (Art. 50)
The EU27 leaders held a special meeting of the European Council in Article 50 format to discuss Brexit. They reconfirmed the conclusions of 25 November 2018, in which they endorsed the withdrawal agreement and approved the political declaration. 

Parliament endorses landmark EU-Japan free trade agreement
The European Parliament gave its consent to the EU’s trade agreement with Japan, the largest bilateral trade deal ever negotiated by the EU. The Economic Partnership Agreement will remove almost all custom duties adding up to €1 billion annually for EU companies.

EU budget 2019 approved: focus on the young, innovation and migration
For next year’s budget, MEPs have secured better support for students, unemployed youngsters and researchers. Commitment appropriations for 2019 total €165.8 billion; payment appropriations total €148.2 billion.

Main results of the General Affairs Council
The Council discussed the next multiannual financial framework, prepared the December European Council and approved its 18-month programme. It also held a hearing on the rule of law in Poland and exchanged views under the Article 7(1) TEU procedure concerning Hungary. 

A Europe that Protects: Commission calls for more efforts to ensure adoption of security proposals
Good progress is being achieved on a number of security initiatives, including the proposals to remove terrorist content online and to reinforce the European Border and Coast Guard, but more efforts are needed.

Food safety: more transparency, better risk prevention
MEPs want the European Food Safety Agency to publish safety studies before a product is authorised to go on to the market. The revised rules aim to make risk assessment more transparent and ensure that the studies used by EFSA to authorise a product to be put on the market are reliable, objective and independent. 

Main results of the Foreign Affairs Council
The Council discussed Iran focusing on the implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA). The ministers also discussed the situation in Venezuela and the dangerous increase of tensions in Ukraine.

Commission presents its response to Antisemitism and a survey showing Antisemitism is on the rise in the EU
The results of the EU Fundamental Rights Agency's latest survey on Antisemitism are particularly worrying: 85% of European Jews consider Antisemitism to be the biggest social or political problem in their home country. 

Main results of the Justice and Home Affairs Council
The Council agreed its position on the regulation on European production and preservation orders for e-evidence in criminal matters. Ministers also agreed positions on the sales of goods directive and on the revision of so called Brussels IIa regulation. 

Main results of the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council
The Council reached a general approach on proposals for a regulation on establishing the European Labour Authority (ELA) and for a directive on carcinogens or mutagens at work. The Council also adopted a recommendation on strengthened cooperation against vaccine-preventable diseases. 

Member States and Commission to work together to boost artificial intelligence “made in Europe”
Delivering on its strategy on artificial intelligence (AI) adopted in April 2018 today the Commission presents a coordinated plan prepared with Member States to foster the development and use of AI in Europe. 

A Europe that Protects: The EU steps up action against disinformation
To protect its democratic systems and public debates and in view of the 2019 European elections as well as a number of national and local elections that will be held in Member States by 2020, the EU is presenting today an Action Plan to step up efforts to counter disinformation in Europe and beyond. 

Commission presents ways to further strengthen the euro's global role
In light of the upcoming European Council and Euro Summit in December, the Commission presents actions to strengthen the role of the euro in a changing world.

Main results of the Economic and Financial Affairs Council
The Council endorsed the political agreement reached with the European Parliament on a package of risk reduction measures in the banking sector and adopted an action plan to better tackle money laundering and terrorist financing. 

Main results of the Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (Telecommunication)

Commission calls on Leaders to pave the way for an agreement on a modern, balanced and fair EU budget for the future
Ahead of the European Council meeting on 13 and 14 December 2018, the Commission is taking stock of the encouraging progress made so far in the negotiations of the EU's next long-term budget and urging Leaders to keep up the momentum. 

A Europe that Protects: Commission calls for continued action to eradicate trafficking in human beings
Taking stock of measures taken since 2015, the report highlights the main trends in trafficking in human beings and outlines remaining challenges that the EU and Member States must address as a matter of priority.

Main results of the Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council (Transport)

Main results of the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina
G20 leaders met in Buenos Aires on 30 November and 1 December 2018. They adopted a declaration focusing on the future of work, infrastructure for development, a sustainable food future and on gender equality. 

Main results of the Competitiveness Council
The Council reached agreement on its position (general approach) on the platform-to-business regulation and the general safety of vehicles regulation. 

Main results of the General Affairs Council (Cohesion)

EU approves disbursement of €500 million in Macro-Financial Assistance to Ukraine
The European Commission, on behalf of the EU, has today approved the disbursement of the first €500 million of the new Macro-Financial Assistance (MFA) programme to Ukraine.

October 2018 - Euro area unemployment at 8.1% - EU28 at 6.7%

DiscoverEU: 12,000 travel passes available for 18-year-olds to explore Europe in 2019

New rules for temporary border controls within the Schengen area
Internal border checks within the Schengen area should be limited to a maximum of one year, instead of the current two-year period, say MEPs.

Commission reports on progress in risk reduction in the Banking Union
The Commission takes stock of the latest developments as regards risk reduction in the banking sector and progress towards an even more integrated and stable EU financial system.

The Commission calls for a climate neutral Europe by 2050
The European Commission adopted a strategic long-term vision for a prosperous, modern, competitive and climate neutral economy by 2050 – A Clean Planet for All.

Main results of the Education, Youth, Culture and Sport Council
The Council reached a partial general approach (the Council's position) on a proposal for a Regulation on the European Solidarity Corps 2021-2027. Ministers also took note of a progress report on a proposal for a new Creative Europe programme 2021-2027 and adopted conclusions on the Work Plan for Culture 2019-2022.

Study: Trade supports over 36 million jobs across the EU
EU exports to the world are more important than ever, supporting 36 million jobs across Europe, two thirds more than in 2000. 14 million of these jobs are held by women. In addition, EU exports to the world generate €2.3 trillion of value added in the EU. 

Main results of the special meeting of the European Council (Art. 50)
EU27 leaders met for a special meeting of the European Council (Art.50) on Sunday 25 November 2018. They endorsed the Brexit withdrawal agreement, as presented by the negotiators of the EU and the UK. Leaders also approved the political declaration on future EU-UK relations, which accompanies and is referred to in the withdrawal agreement. 

The Juncker Plan at work: bringing investment back on track in Europe
In a Communication published today, the Commission reveals how the Investment Plan for Europe – the Juncker Plan – has helped bring investment back to a sustainable level in Europe, four years after its launch. 

State of Health in the EU: more protection and prevention for longer and healthier lives

European Semester Autumn Package: Bolstering inclusive and sustainable growth
Commission sets out EU's economic and social priorities for 2019, presents Opinions on Draft Budgetary Plans and confirms the existence of particularly serious non-compliance with the Stability and Growth Pact in the case of Italy; Greece is integrated into the European Semester for the first time. 

Main results of the Foreign Affairs Council (Defence)

EU shapes its ambitious strategy on India
The European Commission and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy today adopted a Joint Communication that sets out the EU's vision for a strategy to strengthen cooperation and the partnership with India.

Main results of the Foreign Affairs Council
Foreign ministers discussed the most pressing issues on the international agenda. They highlighted their continued full support for the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA), following the entry into force of US sanctions on 5 November 2018. 

Main results of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council
The Council agreed on the fishing opportunities for certain deep sea stocks in the EU and international waters in the North-East Atlantic, for 2019 and 2020. 

Main results of the General Affairs Council (Art. 50)

Plenary highlights: cheaper calls, energy efficiency, Lux Film Prize, Angela Merkel
The EU’s long-term budget and new rules on energy and telecom were among the highlights of the November plenary. Woman at War won this year’s Lux Film Prize. 

October 2018 - Annual inflation up to 2.2% in the euro area - Also up to 2.2% in the EU

European Commission recommends to the European Council (Article 50) to find that decisive progress has been made in Brexit negotiations
The negotiators of the European Commission and the United Kingdom have reached a deal on the terms of the Article 50 Withdrawal Agreement. 

MEPs cap prices of calls within EU and approve emergency alert system
MEPs have approved the telecoms package that caps intra-EU calls, makes super-fast 5G networks possible by 2020 and creates alert system for emergencies. 

European Commission reports on progress in Bulgaria and Romania under the Co-operation and Verification Mechanism
The European Commission issued its latest reports on steps taken by Bulgaria and Romania to meet their commitments on judicial reform and the fight against corruption, and in the case of Bulgaria organised crime, in the context of the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM). 

Brexit: European Commission intensifies preparedness work and outlines contingency action plan in the event of a no deal scenario with the UK
The European Commission has published detailed information on its ongoing preparedness and contingency work in the event of a no deal scenario in the Article 50 negotiations with the United Kingdom.

Energy: new ambitious targets on renewables and energy efficiency
Parliament approves binding 2030 target for renewables (32%) and an indicative target on energy efficiency (32.5%) that will play a crucial role in meeting the EU’s climate goals.

Main results of the General Affairs Council
The Council started preparations for the December European Council, discussed the next multiannual financial framework, held its annual rule of law dialogue and returned to the Article 7(1) TEU procedure concerning Poland and Hungary. 

Main results of the General Affairs Council (Art. 50)

Main results of the Foreign Affairs Council (Trade)
The Council discussed efforts to modernise WTO, the implementation of free trade agreements and latest developments in ongoing bilateral trade negotiations. 

November infringements package: key decisions

Autumn 2018 Economic Forecast: sustained but less dynamic growth amid high uncertainty
Growth in the euro area is forecast to ease from a 10-year high of 2.4% in 2017 to 2.1% in 2018 before moderating further to 1.9% in 2019 and 1.7% in 2020. The same pattern is expected for the EU27, with growth forecast at 2.2% in 2018, 2.0% in 2019 and 1.9% in 2020. 

Endocrine disruptors: A strategy for the future that protects EU citizens and the environment
The Commission has adopted a Communication, confirming its commitment to protecting citizens and the environment from hazardous chemicals. The Communication also outlines how the Commission intends to ensure that the EU approach remains the most modern and fit-for-purpose in the world.

Commission proposes fishing opportunities in the Atlantic and North Sea for 2019
The Commission presents its proposal ahead of the December Fisheries Council where Member States should agree next year's fishing quotas.

European Citizens' Initiative: Commission registers 'Mandatory food labelling Non-Vegetarian / Vegetarian / Vegan' initiative'

Main results of the Economic and Financial Affairs Council
Ministers discussed the state of play of negotiations on the digital services tax, adopted conclusions on climate finance and discussed the implementation of the 2017 EU budget. 

Report: EU trade agreements deliver on growth and jobs, support sustainable development
According to the second annual report about the implementation of trade agreements issued today, these agreements – covering nearly 70 markets all over the world – are proving effective in removing barriers to trade and promoting high standards of labour and environment protection.

September 2018 - Euro area unemployment at 8.1% - EU28 at 6.7%

Plenary highlights: single-use plastics, water quality, border management, antibiotics
Improving drinking water quality, limiting the use of antibiotics on farm animals and a ban on plastic straws and cutlery were among the highlights of this week’s plenary session. 

LIFE Programme: Member States to benefit from quarter of a billion euros of investments in environment, nature and climate action
The European Commission has approved an investment package of €243 million from the EU budget for projects under the LIFE programme supporting nature, the environment and quality of life in Europe's transition to a more sustainable and low-carbon future.

Commission launches new tool to support digital teaching and learning in schools

Plastic Oceans: MEPs back EU ban on throwaway plastics by 2021
Single-use plastic items such as plates, cutlery, straws, balloon sticks or cotton buds, will be banned in the EU under plans adopted on Wednesday. These products, which make up over 70% of marine litter, will be banned from the EU market from 2021, under draft plans approved by Parliament. 

Erasmus+: an expected budget of €3 billion to be invested in young Europeans and to help create European Universities in 2019
For 2019, funds available for Erasmus+ are expected to increase by €300 million or 10% compared to 2018. From an expected budget of €3 billion for next year, €30 million has been set aside for dedicated European Universities.

European Commission requests that Italy presents a revised draft budgetary plan for 2019
The European Commission has identified in the draft budgetary plan submitted by Italy for 2019 a particularly serious non-compliance with the fiscal recommendation addressed to Italy by the Council on 13 July 2018. 

Commission Work Programme 2019: Delivering on promises and preparing for the future
The European Commission today presented its Work Programme for 2019, setting out three main priorities for the year ahead. 

Drinking water: new plans to improve tap water quality and cut plastic litter
MEPs backed plans to improve consumers’ trust in drinking water from the tap, which is much cheaper and cleaner for the environment compared to bottled water.

Main results of the EU-Republic of Korea summit

Main results of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM)
Leaders agreed to further connect both continents to boost trade, improve security, preserve the environment and bring societies closer. They also discussed foreign and security issues. 

Main results of the European Council
The European Council focused on migration and internal security. At the European Council (Art. 50) working dinner on 17 October, EU27 leaders reviewed the state of the negotiations with the UK. 

Commission presents EU-Vietnam trade and investment agreements for signature and conclusion
The European Commission adopted the EU-Vietnam trade and investment agreements, paving the way for their signature and conclusion. Through this adoption, the Commission is demonstrating its commitment to putting these agreements in place as soon as possible.

September 2018 - Annual inflation up to 2.1% in the euro area - EU stable at 2.2%

Main results of the General Affairs Council

Main results of the Foreign Affairs Council
Foreign ministers discussed the most pressing issues on the international agenda; among them the case of the missing Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, where the EU expects full and transparent investigation by the Saudi authorities in full cooperation with the Turkish authorities. 

Main results of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council
The Council reached a political agreement on fishing opportunities in the Baltic Sea for 2019. Ministers also exchanged views on the position to be taken by the EU at the annual consultations with Norway in the framework of their bilateral fisheries agreement.  

Main results of the Justice and Home Affairs Council
The Council adopted its position on the directive on insolvency, restructuring and second chance. Home affairs ministers discussed a Commission proposal on the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (EBCG). They expressed their general wish to strengthen the mandate of the EBCG.

EU fuel labelling: clearer information for consumers and operators

A new bioeconomy strategy for a sustainable Europe
Today the Commission has put forward an action plan to develop a sustainable and circular bioeconomy that serves Europe's society, environment and economy. 

A Europe that protects: Commission calls for decisive action on security priorities
Today, the European Commission is reporting on the progress made towards an effective and genuine Security Union, calling on the European Parliament and the Council to finalise their work on priority security initiatives as a matter of urgency.

Main results of the Environment Council
Meeting in Luxembourg on 9 October, environment ministers succeeded in reaching an agreement on the proposed regulation on CO2 standards for cars and vans (recast). They agreed on the Council position on the text and set new targets for stricter CO2 emission standards.

Fisheries: Commission proposes measures to conserve stocks of deep-sea species in the North-East Atlantic
Today the Commission has proposed Total Allowable Catches (TAC) for a number of species for 2019 and 2020, in an effort to restore deep-sea fish stocks in the North-East Atlantic. Based on scientific advice, these new measures will enable stocks to gradually rebuild to sustainable levels.

Plenary highlights: car emissions, online TV, Romania, future of Europe
Cleaner cars, more European films on streaming services and concerns about the state of rule of law were among the highlights of this week’s plenary session. 

Quicker freezing and confiscation of criminal assets to fight organised crime
The new rules, already informally agreed between Parliament’s negotiators and EU ministers in June, will make it quicker and simpler for EU member states to ask each other to freeze criminal assets or confiscate criminal property.

Free flow of non-personal data: Parliament approves EU’s fifth freedom
New rules aimed at removing obstacles to the free movement of non-personal data within the EU for companies and public authorities were adopted by MEPs.

European Court of Auditors signs off EU accounts for 11th time in a row

Parliament pushes for cleaner cars on EU roads by 2030
CO2 emissions from new cars should be cut by 40% by 2030 and market uptake of electric and low- emission cars should accelerate, say MEPs.

Green light for VAT overhaul to simplify system and cut fraud

New rules for audiovisual media services approved by Parliament
MEPs voted on updated rules on audiovisual media services, protecting children better, with stricter rules on advertising, and 30% European content in video-on-demand. 

Main results of the Economic and Financial Affairs Council
The Commission presented its proposal to strengthen the role of the European Banking Authority (EBA) in supervising EU financial institutions, so as to better address money laundering and terrorist financing threats. 

August 2018 - Euro area unemployment at 8.1% - EU28 at 6.8%

Main results of the Competitiveness Council
Ministers held a policy debate on the structure of the next EU framework programme for research and innovation, Horizon Europe, as well as on the Specific Programme implementing Horizon Europe. 

A Europe that protects: EU customs seized over 31 million fake goods at EU borders in 2017
New figures released by the European Commission today show that customs authorities detained over 31 million fake and counterfeit products at the EU's external border with a street value of over €580 million.

VAT: EU Member States still losing almost €150 billion in revenues according to new figures
While Member States' have carried out a lot of work to improve VAT collection, today's figures show that reform of the current EU VAT system combined with better cooperation at EU level are needed so that Member States can make full use of VAT revenues in their budgets.

One year on: EU-Canada trade agreement delivers positive results

EU steps up its strategy for connecting Europe and Asia
With sustainable, comprehensive and rules-based connectivity at its core, the Communication will help to guide the EU's external action in this field and is a part of the implementation of its Global Strategy. 

State aid: Commission investigation did not find that Luxembourg gave selective tax treatment to McDonald's

European Commission presents comprehensive approach for the modernisation of the World Trade Organisation
The European Commission has today put forward a first set of ideas to modernise the WTO and to make international trade rules fit for the challenges of the global economy. 

State of the Union 2018: Commission proposes to put an end to seasonal clock changes
The European Commission is proposing to end seasonal clock changes in Europe in 2019, giving Member States the freedom to decide once and for all whether they want to permanently apply summer- or wintertime. 

Plenary highlights: SOTEU, copyright, rule of law in Hungary, plastics
MEPs discussed the challenges facing the EU during the State of the Union debate and approved digital copyright rules and measures to counter money laundering and cut plastic waste. 

State of the Union 2018 – Commission proposes last elements needed for compromise on migration and border reform
Building on two years of work, the Commission is proposing to reinforce the European Border and Coast Guard even further and give it the right level of ambition, corresponding to the common challenges Europe is facing in managing migration and borders. 

State of the Union 2018: The Hour of European Sovereignty
President Juncker stresses the need for Europe to become more sovereign so as to be able to play a role in shaping global affairs. 

UN

UN News 2018 Recap: In Case You Missed It
At UN News, 2018 kicked off with UNICEF’s “challenge” to all nations to make sure more newborns survive their first days of life by ensuring they are protected from treatable diseases as well as having access to proven, low-cost health solutions in their first months.

Peacekeeping chief honours Tanzanian troops in Zanzibar, a year on from deadly DR Congo attacks
A year on from the brutal killings of 15 United Nations peacekeepers from Tanzania in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the head of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) paid a visit to some of the victims’ families on Friday, to honour the memory of the soldiers who died in what was the biggest single loss of ‘blue helmets’ in recent history.  

Preparing Africa for ravages of climate change ‘cannot be an afterthought’ – COP24
Africa is at a “tipping point” as global warming increases, and urgent action needs to be taken across the continent now, to mitigate risks and safeguard a decade of social and economic gains, according to a new report launched on Thursday by the United Nations Development Agency (UNDP) at the COP24 climate conference, in Katowice, Poland.

Security Council welcomes Yemen breakthrough, but lasting peace remains a ‘daunting task’
Senior UN officials briefed the Security Council on the details of a UN-brokered ceasefire in Yemen on Friday in and around the key port city of Hudaydah, which is expected to restore a humanitarian lifeline to millions across the country, and kickstart imports of commercial goods.

UN investigates systematic sexual violence across South Sudan
Widespread and systematic sexual violence across South Sudan, just a few months after the country’s top two politicians signed a renewed commitment to peace, was at the top of the UN Commission on Human Rights in the country’s agenda on Friday, as members ended their first fact-finding mission.

DR Congo elections: ‘Excessive use of force’ in campaign must be avoided, says Bachelet
Deadly pre-election violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) sparked by police reportedly firing live ammunition at opposition supporters, has been condemned by the UN’s top rights official, Michelle Bachelet.

Yemen ceasefire deal: ‘Potential’ now to restore humanitarian lifeline to millions
The freshly agreed Yemen ceasefire deal covering the key Red Sea governorates of Hudaydah and Taiz has been welcomed by the World Food Programme (WFP), which on Friday expressed hope that it would improve access for humanitarians and, just as crucially, commercial shipping.

UN agencies launch emergency plan for millions of Venezuelan refugees and migrants
A new plan to cover the urgent needs of millions of Venezuelan refugees and migrants, coordinated by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), was launched in Geneva on Friday.

Civilian death toll continues to mount in Syria, UN relief chief tells Security Council
Although the overall intensity of violence in Syria has decreased, civilians continue to be killed by air and ground-based strikes, Mark Lowcock, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs told the Security Council on Thursday, during a briefing on the current situation in Syria.

Rising insecurity in Central Africa Republic threatens wider region, Security Council told
Rising violence in the Central African Republic threatens to spill across the border into neighbouring countries, creating further instability, a senior United Nations official warned on Thursday, urging continued and coordinated regional efforts to bolster peace and security.

Four million Syrian children have only known war since birth: UNICEF
Half of Syria’s children, that’s four million, have grown up only knowing a life of violence, as the war-battered country enters its eighth year of conflict, the United Nations Childrens Fund (UNICEF) said on Thursday.

Yemen talks: Truce agreed over key port city of Hudaydah
The announcement of a ceasefire between Yemen’s warring parties in and around the key port of Hudaydah, was hailed by UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Thursday as a deal which would improve the lives of millions of people.

Better care, stronger laws needed to save 30 million babies on the brink of death
Nearly 30 million babies each year -  nearly a quarter of the total - are born too soon, too small or become sick, requiring specialized care to survive beyond the first month of life, according to a new report by a global coalition that includes the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and World Health Organization (WHO).

Haiti: ‘Laden with challenges’ but also hope, Mission chief tells Security Council
Haiti is “laden with challenges, but also hope”, the head of the UN Mission in the country told the Security Council on Wednesday, against the backdrop of on-going political unrest in the Caribbean country.

‘Fire-fighting approach’ to humanitarian aid ‘not sustainable’: Deputy UN chief
With around one in every 60 people across the world caught up in a crisis that requires urgent humanitarian assistance, the UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed told a top panel on the issue on Wednesday that maintaining a “fire-fighting approach is not sustainable” in the long term.

UN space-based tool opens new horizons to track land-use on Earth’s surface
Satellite-based tracking to chart how land is being used on the earth’s surface is about to get much easier and more accessible, the UN food agency has announced, launching a new online portal developed in collaboration with the United States Space Agency, NASA.

‘Staunch support’ for Iran nuclear deal tempered by concern over missile testing
While there is “staunch support” among Member States for the 2016 Iran nuclear deal, known formally as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, that is tempered by concerns over some of its other activities, which Iran “should carefully consider and address” according to the latest report  on the deal from the UN Secretary-General.

Prisoner executions in Belarus ‘simply unacceptable’, says UN rights body
The continued use of the death penalty in Belarus has been condemned by an authoritative UN rights body after three men were reportedly executed there, despite its requests for clemency.

Easing US-China trade tensions could save millions of jobs: Asia-Pacific UN report
Millions of jobs in the Asia and Pacific region have been put at risk by conflicts over trade, despite a recent agreement not to escalate tit-for-tat tariffs by the United States and China, according to a new regional UN report.

Failing to agree climate action would ‘not only be immoral’ but ‘suicidal’, UN chief tells COP24
With roadblocks continuing at the COP24 climate change conference over how to implement the  historic 2015 Paris Agreement, United Nations chief António Guterres returned to Poland on Wednesday, to challenge the more than 100 Government leaders gathered in Katowice to find consensus and “finish the job.”

UN pushes for universal health care on International Day
Universal health care for all, leaving no one behind, by 2030: that’s the call going out on International Universal Health Coverage Day, which this year falls on Wednesday. Why 2030? Because that’s the target date for completion of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), one of which (SDG3), calls for the promotion of healthy lives and well-being for all.

COP24: World sports join team UN in race against climate change
Major organizations from the world of sport are joining an increasing number of private sector businesses in the race to beat global warming. At the United Nations’ COP24 conference in Poland on Wednesday, 17 major players representing sporting bodies, athletes and fans, added their names to the collective scoreboard, with the launch of the Sports Climate Action Framework.

UN should be ‘exemplary’ in defending judicial independence, top Judge tells Security Council
The United Nations should be a role model when it comes to repelling attempts to weaken the rule of law and undermine independent judiciaries around the world, a senior UN judge told the Security Council on Tuesday.

Uzbekistan wins its long fight against malaria, as global rates continue to rise
Uzbekistan’s success in becoming recognized as a malaria-free country by the World Health Organization (WHO), is an “extraordinary outcome,” said the Executive Director of the Global Fund on Tuesday, a UN-backed partnership to end malaria epidemics.

COP24 negotiations: Why reaching agreement on climate action is so complex
From Tuesday on, close to 100 Government ministers are due be involved in negotiating a final deal on moving forward with climate action here at the United Nations COP24 conference in Poland. So, what is the goal? To agree a concrete plan to implement the historic 2015 Paris climate deal by mid-century. The stakes are high with numerous different pressure points.

Governments urged to put first ever UN global migration pact in motion, post-Marrakech
The adoption by more than 160 governments of the first-ever global migration pact is a triumph of multilateralism and highlights the importance of dispelling “myths” and fear-mongering over the issue, said the UN’s senior migration official on Tuesday, bringing the key two-day Marrakech conference to a close.

UN working with both sides, after hidden tunnels confirmed along Lebanon-Israel ‘Blue Line’
The head of the United Nations peace mission in Lebanon has urged an end to “rumours and speculations” over tunnels which have been discovered along the UN-drawn “Blue Line” – the border demarcation between Lebanon and Israel.

‘Global sisterhood’ tells perpetrators ‘time is up’ for pandemic of violence
From #MeToo to #HearMeToo, the fight to end violence against women continues as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, Nicole Kidman, joined survivors, activists and other Hollywood celebrities to spotlight the lack of resources that exist to help women push back against violence and abuse.

Bid to raise $5.5 billion for millions of Syrians and their host communities
Some 5.6 million Syrians need help outside the war-torn country and one million of them are children born in exile, UN agencies and partners said on Tuesday, in an appeal for $5.5 billion to cover humanitarian needs for 2019.

Progress made in UN talks to end Yemen war, Envoy lauds ‘positive and serious spirit’
United Nations-sponsored political consultations in Sweden, involving the warring parties in the Yemen war, have led to progress “on a number of issues,” said Martin Griffiths, Special Envoy for Yemen, at a press conference on Monday.

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