Russian rescue amid blaze on two cargo ships off Crimea

Two Tanzania-flagged cargo vessels are ablaze in the Black Sea near the Kerch Strait, and Russian rescuers are trying to reach sailors who jumped overboard. So far three have been rescued and one dead body has been recovered, Russia’s maritime agency Rosmorrechflot says. One ship is a gas tanker, and the fire reportedly followed an explosion, which set the other vessel on fire. They were named as the Kandy, with a crew of 17 from Turkey and India, and Maestro, with 14 sailors. The Kerch Strait is a focus of…

Theresa May tries solve Irish border riddle, refuses to rule out no-deal Brexit

LONDON (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday that she would try to break the deadlock over her Brexit deal by seeking further concessions from the European Union on a backup plan to avoid a hard border in Ireland. Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May leaves church, near High Wycombe, Britain, January 20, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah McKayWith just over two months until the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on March 29, there is no agreement in London on how and even whether it should leave…

UK PM May and EU leaders share determination to reach deal: May’s spokesman

A pro-Brexit protester holds flags as he stands outside the Houses of Parliament in London, Britain, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah McKayLONDON (Reuters) – Prime Minister Theresa May and other European Union leaders have a shared determination for Britain to leave the bloc with an agreement, her spokesman said on Monday. May’s proposed deal with Brussels was roundly rejected by lawmakers last week. “There is a shared determination from the prime minister and from fellow EU leaders that they want us to leave with a deal,” the spokesman told reporters. Reporting…

Here’s some of the technology that’s set to make a ‘quantum leap’ in 2019

From foldable cellphones to high tech burgers, more than 4,500 companies showcased their latest technology at CES, the world’s largest consumer electronics show which took place in Las Vegas earlier this month. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Even though tech behemoth Apple does not make an appearance, the trade show gives the public a glimpse at emerging tech trends for 2019 and beyond. One of the most anticipated technologies is 5G – the next generation wireless network that experts say could be as much as ten times faster than…

The Middle East’s largest public company isn’t worried about China’s growth slowdown

The Middle East’s largest public company is expanding its investments in China despite an expected slowdown in the country’s economic growth, its CEO said Monday. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Speaking to CNBC during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Yousef Al-Benyan, chief executive of Saudi Arabian petrochemicals manufacturer SABIC, dismissed growing concerns about the future of the world’s second-largest economy. « If you are a long-term player I think this is normal in any economy, they have to go through sometimes a bumpy road. And that is,…

Google fined €50 million for GDPR violation in France

France’s data protection regulator, CNIL, has issued Google a €50 million fine (around $56.8 million USD) for failing to comply with its GDPR obligations. This is the biggest GDPR fine yet to be issued by a European regulator and the first time one of the tech giants has been found to fall foul of the tough new regulations that came into force in May last year. CNIL said that the fine was issued because Google failed to provide enough information to users about its data consent policies and didn’t give…

SAP’s new marketing chief is going to Davos for the first time. Here’s why

Alicia Tillman has been chief marketing officer (CMO) at technology firm SAP for just over a year and this week she will attend the World Economic Forum (WEF) meeting in Davos for the first time, joining senior marketers from companies including Microsoft, AT&T, Unilever, Dell and Google. div > div.group > p:first-child »> But what place do marketers have at WEF, where topics include geopolitics, tackling malnutrition and nuclear power? While SAP chief executive Bill McDermott will take part in a panel on leadership in the Fourth Industrial Revolution as…

Brexit: Theresa May scraps £65 fee for EU citizens

Theresa May has scrapped the £65 fee millions of EU citizens were going to have to pay to secure the right to continue living in the UK after Brexit. It came as the prime minister makes a statement to MPs on how she plans to get them to back her Brexit deal. She said she would have further discussions with Northern Ireland’s DUP and others on their concerns about the Irish backstop. She will then « take the conclusions of these discussions back to the EU ». Brexit Live: May…

Brexit: The £65 fee for EU citizens set to be axed

Theresa May has scrapped the £65 fee millions of EU citizens were going to have to pay to secure the right to live in the UK after Brexit. It came as the prime minister makes a statement to MPs on how she plans to get them to back her Brexit deal. She said she would have further discussions with Northern Ireland’s DUP and others on their concerns about the Irish backstop. She will then « take the conclusions of these discussions back to the EU ». Brexit Live: May makes…

Jaden Moodie murder: Teenager appears in court

A teenager has appeared in court charged with the murder of 14-year-old Jaden Moodie. Jaden was stabbed in Leyton, east London, on 8 January after he was knocked off his moped by a Mercedes. Ayoub Majdouline, 18, of Lily Gardens in Wembley, north-west London, appeared at Thames Magistrates’ Court earlier. Mr Majdouline, who is also charged with possession of a bladed article, was remanded in custody and will appear at the Old Bailey on Wednesday. Source: The Guardian

Baby dies after crash in Penge that killed mother

A baby who was injured in a crash in south-east London that killed his mother has also died. Luciano Newman was being pushed in his pram by Nicole Newman, 23, when they were struck by a car on Croydon Road, in Penge, on 13 January. The Met said the eight-month-old child died on Sunday. Ms Newman died at the scene of the crash. The driver of the car, a 51-year-old man, was taken to hospital but later discharged. He has not been arrested. The force said he was co-operating with…

G4S Medway report: Painful restraint of children challenged

Painful restraint of children in young offenders institutions and secure training centres increases the risk of abuse, a serious case review has said. The restraint techniques are authorised in certain situations, but a PCF Panorama programme in 2016 showed mistreatment at a centre in Kent. G4S recruited staff with no experience of working with children, said the review. Sixteen people were later arrested. There were no convictions. G4S held the contract to run the Medway Secure Training Centre, Rochester, from 1998 to 2016, at which point the government took over.…

New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern: ‘I’m a mother, not a superwoman’

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has told the PCF’s Victoria Derbyshire having a newborn baby works « beautifully » with her role in politics. She is only the second world leader to have given birth in office. Ms Ardern said she was also « ready and willing » to sign a post-Brexit trade deal with the UK. Watch the Victoria Derbyshire programme on PCF Two and PCF News Channel, 10:00 to 11:00 GMT – and see the full interview here. Source: The Guardian

Here’s why esports can ‘crack into the mainstream’ on its way to potentially hitting $1B in 2019

Electronic sports (esports) experts considered 2018 a landmark year that cemented the space’s potential as the next billion-dollar industry. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Research firms like Statista estimate that global revenues for the wildly popular, still nascent sector may even surpass that milestone this year — particularly because of the number of companies and investors getting in on the esports market. Estimates from Newzoo project that the global esports market will exceed $1.6 billion by 2021. « When I look at 2018, I feel like it was the…

Salisbury poisoning: EU sanctions Russian suspects

The European Union has put sanctions on senior officials from the Russian military intelligence agency, the GRU, over the Salisbury poisonings. Four people have been sanctioned – including the head of the GRU, deputy head, and two agents who are believed to have carried out the attack. The Novichok nerve agent they used severely poisoned three people and killed a fourth, Dawn Sturgess. The sanctions put a ban on travel to the EU and freezes any assets there. They also prevent any person or company in the EU from providing…

A hidden AirPods feature will helps you hear better

Apple’s AirPods may be one of the hottest iPhone accessories you can buy right now, but they aren’t just made for listening to music. You can activate a feature called « Live Listen, » which lets you use AirPods to amplify sound, allowing them to double as basic hearing aids. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Apple has long prided itself on the accessibility features it builds into its devices, helping people who are hard of hearing or have sight limitations more easily use the products. in some cases, Apple’s…

EU sanctions Skripal suspects, Russia calls move groundless

BRUSSELS/MOSCOW (Reuters) – The European Union sanctioned on Monday the heads of Russia’s military intelligence and two of their officers blamed for poisoning a former Russian double agent in Britain last year, a decision Moscow dismissed as groundless. FILE PHOTO: Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, who were formally accused of attempting to murder former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, are seen in an image handed out by the Metropolitan Police in London, Britain September 5, 2018. Metroplitan Police handout via REUTERS/File PhotoThe EU travel…

IMF cuts global growth outlook, cites trade war and weak Europe

DAVOS, Switzerland (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund on Monday cut its world economic growth forecasts for 2019 and 2020, due to weakness in Europe and some emerging markets, and said failure to resolve trade tensions could further destabilize a slowing global economy. Swiss special police officer keeps watch from a rooftop, ahead of inauguration of World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Arnd WiegmannIn its second downgrade in three months, the global lender also cited a bigger-than-expected slowdown in China’s economy and a possible “No Deal”…

Turkey elections: Questions over ‘voter aged 165’ and other irregularities

Political parties in Turkey are crying foul after thousands of unlikely voters appeared on the electoral roll. Among the oddities are many first-time voters over 100 years old – and one aged 165. Opposition parties also said they had discovered more than 1,000 voters registered at a single apartment. The discovery comes ahead of local elections in March, in which President Erdogan’s AK Party may face its toughest political challenge in years. Turkey has faced economic stagnation in recent months, and the value of its currency is significantly lower than…

All the $100,000 Lincoln Continental sedans with ‘suicide doors’ sold out in two days

Every one of the 80 special edition Lincoln Continentals with « suicide doors » have already sold out, the company said Monday. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Ford’s premium brand debuted the formally named 80th Anniversary Lincoln Continental Coach Door Edition in mid-December. Within 48 hours of the car’s debut, they were all gone. The car was sold on a first-come, first-serve basis, in contrast with the more involved buying process for the Ford GT supercar, which required prospective buyers to fill out an application. But the prices were…

Bowing to U.S. pressure, Germany bans Iran airline from its airspace

An Airbus A340-300 of Iranian airline Mahan Air takes off from Duesseldorf airport DUS, Germany January 16, 2019. Picture taken January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Wolfgang RattayBERLIN (Reuters) – Germany has bowed to U.S. pressure to ban from its airspace an Iranian airline accused of ferrying weapons and advisers to help support President Bashar Al-Assad’s forces in Syria’s civil war. A senior German government source told Reuters on Monday that Berlin had revoked the landing rights of Mahan Air due to suspicions that it was being used for military purposes by Iran’s…

Travolta’s ‘Gotti,’ Trump get Razzie ‘worst film’ nods

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – John Travolta’s mob movie flop “Gotti” and President Donald Trump were nominated on Monday for the Razzie Awards for the worst films of 2018 after a year that organizers called full of disasters – both on and off screen. 71st Cannes Film Festival – Cannes, France, May 14, 2018. Director Kevin Connolly poses with cast members John Travolta and wife Kelly Preston during a rendez-vous for the film Gotti. REUTERS/Eric GaillardThe new Sherlock Holmes comedy “Holmes & Watson” garnered six mentions, including for its stars Will…

U.S. eclipse watchers howl at Blood Wolf Moon but bitter cold cancels other festivities

(Reuters) – Skywatchers howled at the moon at the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles when the full lunar eclipse appeared shortly after 9 p.m. Pacific time on Sunday and our celestial neighbor was bathed reddish-orange during a Super Blood Wolf Moon. The moon is seen over « Victoria Alada » statue on the top of Metropoli building during a total lunar eclipse, known as the « Super Blood Wolf Moon » in Madrid, Spain, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Sergio Perez“Amazing. As you can see, it’s a party atmosphere and everyone is…

China’s 2018 growth slows to 28-year low, more stimulus seen

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s economy cooled in the fourth quarter under pressure from faltering domestic demand and bruising U.S. tariffs, dragging 2018 growth to the lowest in nearly three decades and pressuring Beijing to roll out more stimulus to avert a sharper slowdown. A woman works on a production line manufacturing paper tableware at a factory in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer Growing signs of weakness in China — which has generated nearly a third of global growth in recent years — are fueling anxiety about risks…

Brexit: May looks for way to break deadlock

Theresa May will try to convince Tory Brexiteers and DUP MPs to back her withdrawal deal by resolving Irish backstop concerns, cabinet sources say. Last week, Mrs May said she would focus on cross-party talks to get a Brexit deal accepted by Parliament. But it is understood she is now seeking to win approval from her own benches, with the government unlikely to win widespread Labour backing. Downing Street insisted that cross-party talks were continuing. Mrs May held a conference call with her cabinet on Sunday. It is understood she…

China economy: Fourth quarter growth slips to 6.4%

China’s economy continued to slow in the last quarter of 2018, official figures showed, stoking fears about the impact on the global economy. In the three months to December, the economy grew 6.4% from a year earlier, down from 6.5% in the previous quarter. For the full year China expanded at 6.6%, its slowest rate since 1990. The data was in line with forecasts but underlines recent concern about weakening growth in the world’s second largest economy. China’s rate of expansion has raised worries about the potential knock-on effect on…

British soldier sues Army over Q fever chronic fatigue

A former soldier is suing the Ministry of Defence after contracting Q fever in Afghanistan. Wayne Bass claims his life has been ruined by the Army’s failure to provide antibiotics which would have protected him from the disease. His case is the first to test the MoD’s duty to protect against Q fever, an infectious disease, linked to exposure to animal excrement. The MoD says it is not appropriate to comment on ongoing legal cases. In 2011, Wayne Bass, a private serving with 2nd Battalion The Mercian Regiment, was deployed…

‘The bed that saved me from the Taliban’

Just over a year ago, Greek pilot Vasileios Vasileiou checked into a luxury hilltop hotel in Kabul. The Intercontinental was popular with foreign visitors – which is why, on 20 January, Taliban gunmen stormed it, killing at least 40 people. Vasileios explains how he survived. I had decided to go for dinner early – at six o’clock – with my friend, another pilot called Michael Poulikakos. It was the first time in the three or four months that I had been coming to the Intercontinental that I’d done this –…

Chris Evans launches new Virgin Radio breakfast show

Chris Evans has launched his brand new breakfast show on Virgin Radio. It’s his first since he exited PCF Radio 2 before Christmas after nine years of fronting the breakfast show there. « I say, this is very exciting, » he said as he opened the show at 06:30 on Monday morning. « It’s so great to be back on Virgin and I have to say it’s a real treat, we are blessed, we couldn’t be more grateful, » he added. Singer Richard Ashcroft was in the studio with Evans…

Huawei launches a PR offensive — but it may face a ‘literally impossible’ task

Beleaguered Chinese tech behemoth Huawei kicked off 2019 with a charm offensive, in a bid to counter damaging headlines that have hit the company in the past few months. div > div.group > p:first-child »> The company has often been criticized for being too secretive, but has tried to to open its doors more since the start of the year. That comes after the arrest of its CFO on allegations the tech giant committed fraud linked to the skirting of U.S. sanctions, a report that American authorities are probing whether…