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The Guardian

Latest news, sport, business, comment, analysis and reviews from the Guardian, the world's leading liberal voice

Published: Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:58:39 GMT2017-09-21T17:58:39Z

Copyright: Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. 2017

Jeremy Corbyn: Labour is now the mainstream, with Tories in disarray

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:23:18 GMT2017-09-21T17:23:18Z

Exclusive: Labour leader says his party goes into its conference preparing for another election and with plans to unseat several ministers

Jeremy Corbyn has accused Theresa May of presiding over “a government in disarray” and declared that the Labour party revitalised under his leadership now represents the mainstream of British politics.

Speaking before his party’s first conference since the Conservatives lost their majority, Corbyn said Boris Johnson’s recent Brexit intervention demonstrated that the prime minster had surrendered control of her cabinet.

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EU tells Britain to 'settle the accounts' and speed up Brexit progress

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:30:23 GMT2017-09-21T15:30:23Z

Chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier says he asks why there is still major uncertainty over UK’s approach on key issues

The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator has issued a fresh warning that Britain must “settle the accounts” and speed up the pace of negotiations if it wants a free trade deal when it leaves the bloc.

Related: Article 127: the obscure clause that could deliver a soft Brexit | Jonathan Lis

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Mexico earthquake latest: rescuers keep searching as death toll climbs to 250

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:14:25 GMT2017-09-21T17:14:25Z

Follow live updates as the search for survivors continues after a 7.1 magnitude earthquake killed at least 250 people

The Guardian’s graphics team has produced this image showing death tolls around Mexico.

The name “Frida Sofía” trended on Twitter on Wednesday as the country was captivated by what the media and authorities said was the imminent rescue of a girl trapped in the rubble of a collapsed school.

But Frida Sofía was not the name of the girl rescuers were trying to pull from the rubble of the Enrique Rébsamen school. All students with that name at the school were accounted for, Mexican broadcaster Televisa – which focused heavily on the school site – reported Thursday morning. The girl’s parents also had not been located, according to public education secretary Aurelio Nuño.

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World's richest woman Liliane Bettencourt dies aged 94

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:39:57 GMT2017-09-21T16:39:57Z

Daughter announces death of French L’Oreal heir, who was world’s 14th richest person

Liliane Bettencourt, heir to the French L’Oreal hairspray empire and the world’s wealthiest woman who was at the centre of a long-running French courtroom saga over alleged hangers-on who took advantage of her frailty to elicit money and gifts, has died aged 94.

Bettencourt, whose net worth was estimated at about €33bn (£29bn) this year, was the face of one of France’s biggest cosmetics conglomerates and had once captured the public’s imagination as the nation’s poor little rich girl.

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Deliveroo boss Will Shu gives himself 22.5% rise amid battle over riders' pay

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:21:52 GMT2017-09-21T17:21:52Z

Will Shu hikes salary to £125,000 a year as dispute over workers’ status continues and losses mount at the food delivery company

Will Shu, the boss of Deliveroo, handed himself a 22.5% pay rise last year at the same time as the company spent more than £1.5m on legal fees, partly because of the food delivery firm’s battle over pay and conditions for its thousands of couriers.

Shu, a former investment banker who set up Deliveroo from his London flat in 2013, increased his salary to £124,999 and handed out close to £4.5m in share bonuses to directors and hundreds of other head office staff, despite a 300%-plus widening in losses.

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Facebook strategist rejects PM's claim over extremist material

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:49:22 GMT2017-09-21T17:49:22Z

Counter-terrorism expert says that, contrary to Theresa May’s assertion, technology companies are treating the problem of terrorist content seriously

Facebook’s senior counter-terrorism strategist has dismissed Theresa May’s demand that the company should go “further and faster” to remove material created by terrorists and their supporters, describing the claim that it does not do enough as unhelpful.

Artificial intelligence programs are being created to identify such material, and hundreds of people are employed to search for content that should be removed, said Brian Fishman, who manages the company’s global counter-terrorism policy.

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Catalan leader accuses Spain of violating rights in referendum row

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:51:17 GMT2017-09-21T16:51:17Z

Spanish government acting ‘beyond the limits of a respectable democracy’ but vote will go ahead, says Carles Puigdemont

Carles Puigdemont: Spain’s attempt to block Catalonia’s referendum is a violation of our basic rights

The regional president of Catalonia has accused the Spanish government of acting “beyond the limits of a respectable democracy” and violating fundamental rights as it strives to prevent an independence referendum from being held in 10 days’ time.

Related: Spain’s attempt to block Catalonia’s referendum is a violation of our basic rights | Carles Puigdemont

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Owner of house where 35 men are living threatens to sue Brent council

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:45:47 GMT2017-09-21T16:45:47Z

Sunil Hathi says he is aggrieved that the council called him a rogue landlord and that he originally rented the house to three people

The owner of a three-bedroom house in north-west London where 35 men are living in rooms full of mattresses has insisted he had no idea of the conditions at the property and threatened to take legal action against the council for calling him a rogue landlord.

Brent council raided the property on Winchester Avenue, Queensbury, after complaints from neighbours. Mattresses were found wall to wall in all of the rooms except the bathrooms.

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Hurricane Maria: Dominica 'in daze' after storm leaves island cut off from world

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 07:53:09 GMT2017-09-21T07:53:09Z

Rescue teams struggle to reach first Caribbean victims, with at least seven dead and population stranded without power, running water or communications

• Are you affected by Hurricane Maria? Share your story with us

Dominica – the first island hit by the full category-five force of Hurricane Maria – is “in a daze”, officials have said, cut off from its Caribbean neighbours in the wake of a storm that destroyed properties, silenced communications and cut power and running water.

Related: British Virgin Islands brave two storms in two weeks: 'Maria destroyed most of what was left'

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Pregabalin, known as 'new valium', to be made class C drug after deaths

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:06:19 GMT2017-09-21T16:06:19Z

Prescription drug is handed out too readily and used recreationally, say doctors, with 111 deaths linked to it last year

A prescription drug described as the “new valium” is to be classified as a class C controlled substance after it was linked to a growing number of UK deaths.

Pregabalin – a substance used to treat nerve pain, epilepsy and anxiety – is increasingly being handed out too readily and being used recreationally, according to doctors and pharmacists. They say that when it is mixed with other substances it can lead to overdose. Deaths connected to pregabalin have risen from four in 2012 to 111 last year, according to the Office for National Statistics.

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Sean Spicer says he didn't 'knowingly' lie to American public

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:06:51 GMT2017-09-21T16:06:51Z

Asked by Good Morning America if he’d ever lied from the podium, Trump’s former press secretary said ‘I don’t think so’ – but admitted he’d ‘made mistakes’

Sean Spicer, who became notorious as Donald Trump’s mouthpiece, insisted on Thursday that he did not “knowingly” lie to the American people from the White House podium.

The combative Spicer claimed that Trump’s inauguration drew a record crowd, repeated the president’s groundless claim that millions of people voted illegally, and offered an explanation for FBI director James Comey’s dismissal that Trump quickly contradicted.

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It’s lit! How film finally learned to light black skin

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:26:52 GMT2017-09-21T16:26:52Z

In lighting, makeup and camera calibration, cinema has pandered to white skin for decades. Now, a new generation of film-makers are keen to ensure people of colour look as good on screen as they should

Insecure, the HBO series currently in its terrific second season (#TeamMolly), has been garnering attention since its pilot for its refreshing look at the lives of a small group of black women in Los Angeles. Broadcast in the same slot as its precursor Girls, which showed women as their “real” messy selves, and before that Sex and the City, a fantasia of skipping round New York in Manolos, Insecure sits somewhere between the two. Its storylines are all too real, but it looks stylish and glamorous.

Previous incarnations of black characters on television have mainly been overlit sitcoms or overly gloomy slices of realism. Insecure is neither – and its actors look like bonafide movie stars.

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Farage, Johnson, Cummings – the Brexiters are fleeing May’s sinking ship | Ian Birrell

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:47:44 GMT2017-09-21T15:47:44Z

Her Florence speech will struggle to restore credibility against a tide of self-serving rightwing criticism

Theresa May has looked out of her depth since she became prime minister. She has blown her majority, achieved nothing beyond clinging to power, and remains in post only because of a paucity of alternatives in her divided party. So a disunited country has a terrifyingly weak leader as it confronts its biggest challenge since the second world war. Tomorrow she must try to restore her credibility, so shattered both at home and abroad, with a speech that finally proves she has a precise plan for Brexit.

When she stands up in Florence – a city that was once a leading financial centre – she has to find words to unite her feuding party, silence fanatics on the right, soothe the concerns of business and soften the view across Europe that her government still has little idea how to seal Brexit. She needs to shift from shallow slogans that shroud this debate and detail a clear vision for departure that embraces transitional arrangements and future trading relationships.

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Borg vs McEnroe’s Stellan Skarsgård: ‘I’ve been changing diapers for 40 years’

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:00:21 GMT2017-09-21T15:00:21Z

He’s both one of Sweden’s most prolific actors and the father of eight kids – including actors Alexander and Bill. So it’s no surprise that – despite starring in the nail-biting tennis drama – he doesn’t have much time for sport

It must be difficult to get entirely swept up in the magic of the movies when you are the man who once changed Pennywise’s nappies. This is the strange position that actor Stellan Skarsgård finds himself in, as he promotes his new film, Borg vs McEnroe, while his 27-year-old son, Bill Skarsgård, is receiving rave reviews for playing the demonic clown in a new adaptation of Stephen King’s It while his eldest son, Alexander, is about to win an Emmy for his role in Big Little Lies. “I was happy when he was doing It because he had so much fun, and that’s where the joy was really,” says Skarsgård senior, frowning thoughtfully out of the hotel room window, as if searching for the right words amid the rooftop air vents. “It’s also kind of ridiculous, all of it, isn’t it? On Sunday, Alexander goes up for the Emmy … It’s kind of silly, isn’t it?”

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Brooklyn nein, nein – Becks Jr tells his ‘fangirl’ classmates to chill out

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:21:22 GMT2017-09-21T16:21:22Z

David and Victoria’s eldest is settling in at art school in New York, where he’s only too happy to help his peers deal with his fame and genius

Focus, focus, because it’s time to check in with the publicity arm of Brooklyn Beckham, the firstborn son of David and Victoria, and a photographer in … in his own right, would you say?

Arguably not. Let’s settle on “in his own lunchtime”, and proceed accordingly. As you may recall, Brooklyn recently published a coffee-table book of his own photography, which dispensed with photographic cliches such as having light on one’s subject, and featured captions such as: “I like this picture – it’s out of focus but you can tell there’s a lot going on”. Now Brooklyn has started at art school in New York, and is consequently fitting in book signings and promotional interviews with his studies. Last week, New York magazine’s The Cut website interviewed him before his event at an Urban Outfitters in Williamsburg, and found the young student reflecting on his status.

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Lift up your hearts for Hillsong, the church that’s made a believer out of Bieber

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:53:17 GMT2017-09-21T16:53:17Z

It’s huge, it’s hip, it’s Pentecostal – and it’s snapping up celebrity worshippers as if the world depended on it, headed by its biggest convert, Justin Bieber

Ever on the lookout for the perfect facility to address my spiritual education and showbiz needs – and not in that order – I am GRIPPED by news of the Hillsong church in America’s Los Angeles. Hillsong is a Pentecostal mega-church, whose first branch was in Australia in some kind of corrugated-iron warehouse. So far, so Lady Marchmain.

I’m kidding, of course – the aesthetic at Hillsong is far from popish, with services consisting of Christian rock music in concert-like spaces, attended by young dressed-down people who then leave Yelp reviews about how much awesome Holy Spirit was there, and how good the coffee was and so on. We’ll boggle at some of those in due course.

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Tate Modern to host its first ever Picasso exhibition

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:37:56 GMT2017-09-21T15:37:56Z

Show focusing on one year - 1932 - will bring together three paintings of reclining nudes based on artist’s lover Marie-Thérèse Walter

Three reclining nudes, inspired by one of Picasso’s most famous lovers, Marie-Thérèse Walter, are to be reunited for the first time in 85 years in an exhibition at Tate Modern.

The three paintings, which were described by Tate Modern director Frances Morris as “sensual, seductive and beautiful”, will be the centrepiece of the gallery’s first Picasso show, which will focus on just one formative year of the artist’s life – 1932.

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American Vandal review – Netflix sends itself up with a four-hour penis joke

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:27:33 GMT2017-09-21T16:27:33Z

The streaming channel parodies one of its most bankable genres, the true-crime doc, with an amateur investigator on the trail of a genital-obsessed street artist

What is it? The moment that Netflix ate itself.

Why you’ll love it: Here’s a theory: media outlets that are comfortable mocking themselves are the easiest ones to love. The BBC can air a series as lacerating as W1A – set inside the actual BBC HQ, full of BBC middle-managers drowning in pointless BBC bureaucracy – and people read it as a sign of self-confidence. Same with NBC and 30 Rock. Now Netflix has released American Vandal, mercilessly lampooning one of its most identifiable genres – the long-form, true-crime documentary – in such a way that it forces you to begrudgingly respect the service’s commissioning editors.

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Why I’m glad no one wants to call their baby Nigel any more | Nigel Planer

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:08:57 GMT2017-09-21T15:08:57Z

It was never a cool name, even before Farage helped consign it to the dustbin of history. It deserves to be no-platformed

It’s kind of uplifting to find that in the last year, no one in the UK has named their child Nigel. This is possibly a first. There are plenty of baby Jeremys and a small increase in Borises. But no Nigels at all. We are looking at a whole Nigel-free generation. We Nigels are becoming extinct. Which is a good thing – it’s always been near the top of the list of crap names to give your kid, along with Cecil, Jolyon and Leslie.

But this year is significant because it’s the first time ever there are no little Nigels. None. It’s clear what’s happened – fed-up with certain radio and TV stations, with Twitter and with most of the print papers giving our currently most famous Nigel oxygen, parents have taken the matter into their own hands. The name has been no-platformed, it’s no longer a safe place.

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Martin Glenn’s next step after sacking Mark Sampson should be to resign | Barney Ronay

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:06:16 GMT2017-09-21T17:06:16Z

The holes in the FA’s version of events make a case for its chief executive to stand down on the Lady Bracknell principle of administrative bungling

The FA chief executive, Martin Glenn, has acted decisively – if confusingly and belatedly – in dismissing Mark Sampson from his post as the manager of the England women’s team.

Glenn’s next step should be to offer his own resignation. Again this should be done promptly, and with an acceptance the public expects more from the governing body of its national sport than bungled attempts at spin and reputation management, or moral principles that appear to bend with the weather vane of bad publicity.

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Chelsea confirm agreement to sell Diego Costa to Atlético Madrid for £57m

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:47:48 GMT2017-09-21T13:47:48Z

• Spain striker’s return to La Liga subject to medical and personal terms
• Costa has not played for Chelsea this season after dispute with Antonio Conte

Chelsea have confirmed they have reached agreement with Atlético Madrid over the sale of Diego Costa, with the Spain striker expected to complete his return to La Liga subject to the agreement of personal terms and a medical.

The 28-year-old has yet to feature for the Premier League champions this season after being told he was not part of Antonio Conte’s plans. But despite Atlético being subjected to a transfer ban, a statement from Chelsea on Thursday said Costa is set to rejoin the Spanish club for a fee believed to be in the region of £57m three years after he moved to London for £32m.

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David Lappartient reaps wind of change blowing through cycling | William Fotheringham

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:46:51 GMT2017-09-21T16:46:51Z

French campaigner called a political machine benefits from anti-British backlash after scandals to easily defeat Brian Cookson in UCI presidential election

“A political machine,” wrote the respected French journalist Jean-François Quénet of his fellow countryman David Lappartient, a man who, it seems, has never lost an election, rising seamlessly through French local and two-wheeled politics to simultaneously hold positions of power in the Morbihan region of Brittany and world cycling. His victory over the incumbent Brian Cookson in the UCI presidential election on Thursday is, just the latest in a long list of political triumphs.

However, the scale by which he drubbed the Lancastrian – 37 votes to eight – points to a massive backlash against the former British Cycling head, who was elected in 2013 on a wave of disgust against the previous administration amid hopes of renewal. At the time Cookson came across as the technocrat who was needed to restore calm, order and integrity, but he has come under pressure from many sides over issues as diverse as the World Tour calendar, the UCI’s campaign against technological fraud and women’s racing. All of these were buttons Lappartient could press.

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Andre Ward, boxing's pound-for-pound world No1, announces shock retirement

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:43:36 GMT2017-09-21T15:43:36Z

  • Undefeated pound-for-pound king announces his retirement at 33
  • Ward says ‘my body can no longer put up with the rigors of the sport’
  • Olympic champion had not lost as a pro or amateur since he was 13

Andre Ward, the unified light heavyweight champion widely recognized as the world’s top pound-for-pound boxer, announced his retirement from the sport on Thursday.

The Olympic champion attributed a physical toll and waning desire to his decision to walk away at the relatively young age of 33.

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England v West Indies: rain forces abandonment of second ODI – as it happened

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:21:19 GMT2017-09-21T15:21:19Z

Only 2.2 overs were possible at Trent Bridge before heavy rain forced a frustrating washout

The umpires have accepted the inevitable and called the game off. I’m sure you’ll agree that this has been a triumph for all concerned. Thanks for your company, bye!

And Haseeb Hameed has suffered another broken finger, which presumably ends his hopes of being in the Ashes squad. That’s a blessing, I think, even if his poppadom fingers are a concern.

Related: India v Australia: second one-day international – live!

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Eddie Jones to name most of his Lions in England squad for autumn series

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:47:47 GMT2017-09-21T17:47:47Z

• Decision will reignite debate over player welfare
• Rob Baxter insists top players are not overworked

Eddie Jones will on Friday reignite the debate over player welfare by naming the vast majority of his British & Irish Lions stars in a 33-man England squad for next week’s training camp in Oxford. Jones had indicated he might rest some senior Lions for the forthcoming autumn series but it is now understood most will be involved at some stage during November.

Virtually all the Premiership-based Lions are already back in action for their clubs and key men such as Owen Farrell and Maro Itoje, who played prominent roles in the summer drawn series against New Zealand, will have precious little scope for a lengthy break next year, when England are due to play a best-of-three series in South Africa in June and four further autumn Tests at Twickenham in the build-up to the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

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It’s a fine line between pleasure and pain – the margins are brutal | Liam Rosenior

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:55:37 GMT2017-09-21T14:55:37Z

One bad decision can snatch defeat from the jaws of victory and lacerate a team’s confidence but lessons can be learned from the scars

Have you ever gone out on a Friday night full of excitement and expectation – relishing everything that’s ahead of you – only to find yourself full of guilt and remorse on Saturday morning? Well, what happened at Bournemouth last weekend was worse than a night out where I said the wrong thing.

The game at the Vitality Stadium was one we badly wanted to win and we were 1-0 up with 20 minutes to go. We were cruising. The team performance was good and the feeling on the pitch was that we were heading towards our first-ever Premier League away win.

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Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham denies he is set to switch allegiances to Nigeria

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:45:15 GMT2017-09-21T15:45:15Z

• Nigeria had claimed striker on loan at Swansea has ‘begun process’ with Fifa
• Abraham says he remains committed to England

Tammy Abraham has denied reports that he is set to switch international allegiances to Nigeria in a bid to play at next year’s World Cup and insisted he remains committed to England.

The Chelsea striker, who is on a season-long loan to Swansea, played for England at this summer’s European Under-21 Championships in Poland but remains eligible for the Super Eagles through his parents.

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Nascar's Danica Patrick drove the lonely road to a feminist legacy

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:57:46 GMT2017-09-21T14:57:46Z

Her career may be near the finish line, but the trailblazing driver will leave behind a unique legacy as an instrument of male and female fantasy

The Hollywood treatment of the Danica Patrick story hasn’t hit theaters yet. But please believe: it’s coming. Maybe in a year. Maybe in 30. Either way, the creative license is going to be off the charts.

It’s not hard to imagine the Danica character, played by a Mara sister or similar “type”, shaving her head or adding bass to her voice or insisting her rival drivers call her “Dan Patrick”. The idea of a woman race car driver – and inside the southern fried, patriarchal world of Nascar of all places – requires so much suspension of disbelief, after all. The most palatable argument for it isn’t the truth. It’s another version of Disney’s Mulan, but with a fiery race car in place of a dragon.

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Mark Sampson sacked and the Carabao Cup – Football Weekly Extra

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:28:23 GMT2017-09-21T15:28:23Z

Max Rushden and co look at the big stories of the week, plus the midweek action, via Rio Ferdinand getting in the ring and a painful Spurs song

Rate, review, share on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, Audioboom, Mixcloud, Acast and Stitcher, and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and email.

A wild Max Rushden appears to talk about everything that’s happened in football since the last show, along with Barry Glendenning, Andy Brassell and Priya Ramesh.

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Strike talk will only grow louder as rugby union demands on players increase | Paul Rees

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:20:50 GMT2017-09-21T10:20:50Z

It feels fitting the Premiership is embracing the US when one of American sport’s historic traits – player militancy – looms ever larger in response to plans to extend the season

It was fitting that the Premiership dropped into the United States last weekend in a month when high‑profile players have added their support to calls for strike action as a last resort should proposals to expand the season by a month from 2019-20 go ahead.

Professional sport in the US has a history of strikes. The 1994-95 dispute in baseball was the longest, lasting 232 days and making 1994 the first year without a World Series for 90 years. American football, basketball, ice hockey and even football have all been hit by walkouts, with salary caps and owners’ demands to be compensated for the loss of players as free agents usually at the centre of a dispute.

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Real Betis keep their heads to leave Real Madrid assessing early-season damage | Sid Lowe

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:21:47 GMT2017-09-21T13:21:47Z

Thirty-five different teams over 73 games stretching back almost 18 months had tried and failed to stop Real Madrid scoring. Real Betis went one better

Manchester United couldn’t do it, Manchester City couldn’t do it and Bayern Munich couldn’t do it. Juventus couldn’t do it either. Nor could Borussia Dortmund, Napoli or Sporting Lisbon. The other Sporting, from Gijón, couldn’t do it. They came from Mexico, Japan, Poland and Cyprus and failed too. Barcelona tried four times but they couldn’t do it. Sevilla and Atlético had five goes each. Nope, no good. Along came Valencia, Deportivo and Celta, Osasuna, Espanyol and Villarreal, but they couldn’t do it and nor could Las Palmas, Eibar, Athletic, Cultural, Granada, Málaga, Alavés or Leganés. Real Betis, on the other hand, could. In fact, on Wednesday night they only went and did something even better.

Thirty-five different teams from eight different countries had tried over 73 games and six competitions stretching back almost 18 months and none of them had stopped Real Madrid scoring, but Betis were almost there. There was still time for it to slip away, especially against the team with a thing for agonising late goals and they were nervous but they were near. It was 11.47pm and the scoreboard at the Santiago Bernabéu, like scoreboards everywhere, had stopped on 90 minutes – information denied when it’s most needed. Alongside, it read: Madrid 0-0 Betis. The board went up: five minutes, one last bugle call, a record awaiting, fans screaming at them to pour forward.

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Jürgen Klopp backs Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain despite dismal display

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:50:56 GMT2017-09-21T14:50:56Z

• Liverpool manager says criticism of £35m signing is premature
• ‘The way people are talking it’s like we’re the worst team in the country’

Jürgen Klopp remains convinced of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s ability despite the dismal performance by Liverpool’s £35m signing in his first start at Leicester.

Oxlade-Chamberlain missed a chance early on and seemed nervous and error-prone thereafter, but Klopp felt his performance was not as bad as some critics have suggested.

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Women’s Super League: our team-by-team guide to the 2017-18 season

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 11:56:18 GMT2017-09-21T11:56:18Z

From Arsenal to Yeovil, we assess the contenders and likely strugglers for the maiden winter campaign – as Manchester City look to maintain their supremacy

Once the dominant force in women’s football, Arsenal have slipped behind Chelsea and Manchester City in recent years and have not lifted the title since 2012. Not that they should be taken lightly – they were the only team to remain unbeaten in the Spring Series. However, finishing third highlighted the need for greater efficiency.

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Kuldeep Yadav hat-trick inspires India to 50-run win over Australia in second ODI

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:42:47 GMT2017-09-21T16:42:47Z

• India 252 (Kholi 92); Australia 202 (Stoinis 62*)
• Yadav picks off Matthew Wade, Ashton Agar and Pat Cummins

Australia have gone 2-0 down in their one-day international series against India after collapsing in Kolkata.

Set 253 for victory, the visitors lost their last eight wickets for 117 runs with a hat-trick to left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav sealing Thursday’s match at Eden Gardens.

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Arsène Wenger denies making example of Alexis Sánchez after failed move

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:09:29 GMT2017-09-21T10:09:29Z

• Forward has not started in Premier League since Manchester City interest
• Arsenal manager says he believes Sánchez is happy at club

Arsène Wenger has insisted he is not seeking to make any sort of point to Alexis Sánchez over his selections of the forward so far this season.

Sánchez tried and failed to force a move to Manchester City before the closure of the summer transfer window and Wenger has used him since as a starter in the Europa League and Carabao Cup but only as a substitute in the Premier League.

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McLaren’s F1 engine switch gives power to team’s belief they can revive fortunes | Giles Richards

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:21:50 GMT2017-09-21T10:21:50Z

Ending their disastrous relationship with Honda and teaming up with Renault will not make McLaren winners overnight but it may be enough to lay the foundations for the future – especially if Fernando Alonso signs a new deal

A return to “normality” in Formula One next season – “to be on the podium and fight for victories” – is Fernando Alonso’s expectation for McLaren after the team formally announced their partnership with Honda would end this year. The relationship has proved to be a very public car crash for the team and the engine manufacturer over the last three years and Alonso has been absolutely clear that he held Honda responsible. His optimism stems from the switch to Renault power units but the task that lies ahead for McLaren remains immense.

The most successful British racing team, with eight constructors’ and 12 driver’s titles, have not won a race since Jenson Button’s victory at Brazil in 2012. They have not claimed a constructors’ title since 1998. The switch to Renault is not going to reverse this trend overnight but it may be enough to lay the foundations for the future.

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County cricket: Finn takes 8-79 in Middlesex win, Surrey v Somerset – as it happened

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:51:13 GMT2017-09-21T17:51:13Z

Right, time to sign off. Thank you for your company and great to see so many of you earlier. Here’s the scores on the doors.

Division One:

And stumps at Headingley! Yorkshire lose Brathwaite last ball of the day and are

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Behold, the latest must-have wedding accessory: dead butterflies | Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:04:10 GMT2017-09-21T14:04:10Z

Releasing soon-to-be-dead insects as the knot is tied is the latest witless idea from an industry that churns out identikit ceremonies for exorbitant fees

There are many things to find distasteful about the wedding-industrial complex, but the fact that it is now causing the deaths of butterflies surely takes the (naked) cake. According to Butterfly Conservation, the trend for releasing butterflies from a box during wedding ceremonies, known as “butterfly confetti” (me neither), could be spreading disease as well as diverting vital conservation resources away from protecting species under threat.

This is how it works: you pay £350 for each of your 50 guests to hold a box with a butterfly in it while a Native American poem is read out (“If anyone desires a wish to come true they must first / Capture a butterfly and whisper that wish to it” – sounds totally authentic to me) and, presumably, that perfect picture is captured as a cloud of beautiful insects flutter blindly towards the air-conditioning unit as you embark upon your married life in a whirlwind of everlasting love, fidelity and butterfly parts. Such a lovely service.

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Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary may be flying by the seat of his pants in row with pilots | Nils Pratley

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:43:42 GMT2017-09-21T17:43:42Z

It makes doubtful sense for Michael O’Leary to patronise and alienate his pilots, who may get their own back by joining a union

Funnily enough, Michael O’Leary did not preach a gospel of peace, love and goodwill to all pilots at Thursday’s annual meeting. Even by his standards the Ryanair chief executive’s belligerence was extraordinary.

Pilots do not have a difficult job, shareholders were told. Some are “precious about themselves” and “full of their own self-importance”. To manage Ryanair’s crisis over cancelled flights, O’Leary may force a few to re-arrange their own holidays. And, while he may have a few incentives in his back pocket, “if pilots misbehave, that will be the end of the goodies”.

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Theresa May can’t outsource counter-terrorism to Silicon Valley | Alia Brahimi

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:38:22 GMT2017-09-21T15:38:22Z

Will a reduction of extremist content online really reduce the terror threat while catastrophic conditions persist in Syria, Iraq and Libya?

Theresa May called on technology companies to go “further and faster” in taking down extremist content at the UN on Wednesday. “Ultimately it is not just the terrorists themselves who we need to defeat,” the British prime minister said. “It is the extremist ideologies that fuel them.”

The proliferation of extremist material online is a significant problem that we need to challenge. However, May’s remarks are based on the common yet misguided assumption that extreme ideological material, and its availability on the internet, is what drives terrorism.

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Tech's push to teach coding isn't about kids' success – it's about cutting wages

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:33:35 GMT2017-09-21T16:33:35Z

Today’s hi-tech wages threaten Silicon Valley’s bottom line. What better way to drive down coders’ pay than by investing in a new generation of cheap labor?

This month, millions of children returned to school. This year, an unprecedented number of them will learn to code.

Computer science courses for children have proliferated rapidly in the past few years. A 2016 Gallup report found that 40% of American schools now offer coding classes – up from only 25% a few years ago. New York, with the largest public school system in the country, has pledged to offer computer science to all 1.1 million students by 2025. Los Angeles, with the second largest, plans to do the same by 2020. And Chicago, the fourth largest, has gone further, promising to make computer science a high school graduation requirement by 2018.

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With a liar like Boris Johnson as foreign secretary how can Europe trust Britain? | Joris Luyendijk

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:33:08 GMT2017-09-21T10:33:08Z

The UK depends upon its reputation for honesty, fairness and respect for the law. Johnson’s Brexit bill pronouncements are testing anglophiles’ patience

To get a sense of where the UK’s reputation in the rest of Europe is heading, go to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) website and type in the name of the British foreign minister. Then think of what an ordinary German reader will make of these search results:

“How Boris Johnson makes a fool of himself in an interview.”

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A new cycling law won't make roads safer and could postpone laws that could | Peter Walker

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:35:39 GMT2017-09-21T14:35:39Z

Of the about 400 pedestrians killed a year in the UK an average of just two are hit by a bike. Enforcing speeding limits on the other hand could help prevent 250 deaths

So there is to be an “urgent” review into whether the law should be changed to target dangerous cycling. This follows a campaign by Matt Briggs, whose wife, Kim, was killed when she was struck by a bike ridden by the now-jailed Charlie Alliston.

The first thing to stress is that I understand completely why Matt Briggs feels the way he does. I’ve talked to him, and appreciate why charging Alliston under an 1861 law was unwieldy and caused long delays. Briggs is a thoughtful, intelligent man and I wish him well.

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An insurgent force for good – that’s our vision for the Green party | Caroline Lucas and Jonathan Bartley

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:21:51 GMT2017-09-21T13:21:51Z

Our party conference will address the political challenge of how to collectively design a future where we can all thrive – and have a larger life

The hurricanes battering the Caribbean are a deadly reminder of the immense force of nature. They show with stark clarity what happens when those with the most power fail to protect those with the least, and when those with the greatest ability to tackle the growing threat of climate breakdown shirk their responsibility to those who face its worst effects.

The story of our recent past and our present is of a handful of powerful people acting against the interests of everyone else. Those who make it to the top – of multinational corporations and of government – defend themselves and the status quo against all attacks, deepening inequality in society and sowing the seeds of planetary destruction. The future doesn’t need to be like this, but if we want to write a different story we need to start now.

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Article 127: the obscure clause that could deliver a soft Brexit | Jonathan Lis

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 11:58:28 GMT2017-09-21T11:58:28Z

For MPs concerned about the impact on the economy, article 127 on EEA exit is an opportunity: if parliament wishes to avoid hard Brexit, it could be key

As the government continues its mission to pull Britain out of the single market at apparently any cost, the last hope for remainers and soft Brexiters could lie in the least glamorous and most surprising of places: article 127 of the 1994 European Economic Area (EEA) agreement. This obscure legal clause could, indeed, be all that stands between Britain’s economy and a cliff edge.

Related: Time isn’t on her side: Theresa May must set out her Brexit plan this week | Anand Menon and Jonathan Portes

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When media sceptics misrepresent our climate research we must speak out

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:09:32 GMT2017-09-21T13:09:32Z

Our climate paper underlined that strong action towards the 1.5C Paris goal is perhaps more valid than ever, but reading some of the media coverage you might think the opposite was true

On Monday, we published a paper in the scientific journal Nature Geoscience that re-evaluated how much carbon dioxide we can still afford, collectively, to emit into the atmosphere and still retain some hope of achieving the ambitious goals of the Paris climate agreement to “pursue efforts” to keep global temperatures to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels. The carbon budget we found, to yield a two-in-three chance of meeting this goal, was equivalent to starting CO2 emission reductions immediately and continuing in a straight line to zero in less than 40 years: a formidable challenge.

Formidable, but not inconceivable. The distinction matters, because if it were already completely impossible to achieve the Paris ambition, many might argue there was no point in pursuing those efforts in the first place – or that the only option left is immediately starting to cool the planet with artificial volcanoes.

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The wrong sort of voter? There’s no such thing, AC Grayling | Giles Fraser: Loose canon

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 12:48:28 GMT2017-09-21T12:48:28Z

Grayling revives a fear of the mob that’s as old as Plato. Brexit convinced our elite that ordinary people were not intelligent enough to know what’s best for them

Plato famously insisted that the ideal society should be run by philosophers. Just as the master of a ship must be an expert in the craft of navigation, so too the master of the good society must be an expert in the craft of good governance. And just as you shouldn’t allow any old Tom, Dick or Harry to become the master of a ship, so you shouldn’t give them mastery over a society either. That is Plato’s case against democracy. Governance requires experts. Philosophers.

Step forward AC Grayling – philosopher. In his new book, Democracy and Its Crisis, he tells us that the Brexit result was the consequence of giving too much power to the wrong sort of people. The reason we have representative democracy rather than direct democracy, he says, is so that the various institutions of government are able to ameliorate the fickleness and ignorance of the ordinary voter. “Sometimes he drinks heavily while listening to the flute,” sneered Plato at this ordinary voter. Asking the opinions of such people is bound to cause trouble. They are not bright enough to know when they are being manipulated; not expert enough to know what’s best for them. Thus, disappointed remainers like AC Grayling have revived the ancient idea that “clever” people should have more of a say than others in how this country is run.

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Climate optimism has been a disaster. We need a new language – desperately | Ellie Mae O’Hagan

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:24:21 GMT2017-09-21T13:24:21Z

The extreme weather of the past months is a game-changer: surely now the world is ready to talk about climate change as a civilisation-collapsing catastrophe

In 1988, when the scientist James Hansen told a senate committee that it was “time to stop waffling so much and say that the evidence is pretty strong that the greenhouse effect is here”, those who took him seriously assumed that if they just persisted with emphasising that this terrible fact would eventually destroy us, action would be taken. Instead, the opposite happened: when confronted with the awful reality of climate change, most people tended to retreat into a panglossian vision of the future, or simply didn’t want to hear about it.

Related: Stop talking right now about the threat of climate change. It’s here; it’s happening | Bill McKibben

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I live a healthier life now I’m free of the trappings of modernity | Mark Boyle

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:00:28 GMT2017-09-21T08:00:28Z

Staying healthy is not about doctors, ambulances and technology. I’m in tune with my body and use healthy eating, exercise and herbs to keep me in balance

When people learn of my decision to reject modern complex technology in favour of older, slower, forgotten ways, their first line of inquiry usually involves healthcare. Considering its importance to our lives, this is hardly surprising. Yet because of its emotive nature – which of us, after all, doesn’t have friends or family needing glasses, hearing aids, stents or prescription drugs? – it seems difficult to have a calm, objective discussion on the subject.

Related: Life without social media has taught me the virtues of being social | Mark Boyle

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Remove society’s safety net and what do we get? Disabled toddlers in dirty clothes | Frances Ryan

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:40:00 GMT2017-09-21T09:40:00Z

The coalition government abolished the social fund in 2013. People such as Kirsty and her family now have to fend for themselves in a crisis

The new washing machine sitting in Kirsty’s kitchen is worth its weight in gold. In their council house in Manchester, Kirsty, 25, is caring for her two young boys – four-year-old disabled Keaton and three-year-old Braydon. Keaton was born with end-stage renal failure and it’s gruelling on him and the family: years of dialysis, multiple operations, and even a kidney transplant from his mum last year. (Kirsty wears a bracelet with the date 9/6/16 and stars round it to mark a “life-saving date”.)

But money – keeping the boys fed and warm and dry – is another weight on her mind. Kirsty had planned to go back to work after her sons’ births – she sold football kits in Manchester City’s club shop and before that cleaned for years – but it was impossible with Keaton’s health. Her fiance – wracked with ulcers and a form of Crohn’s disease – is currently applying for out-of-work sickness benefits and getting nothing in the meantime. It means that for years, their only income has been Keaton’s disability benefit, disability living allowance (DLA) and Kirsty’s carer’s allowance.

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Labour will hold a winning card if it harnesses the potential of its members | Emina Ibrahim

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:53:20 GMT2017-09-21T10:53:20Z

It’s right that members should get more of a say in choosing leadership candidates. To win an election, the party must be inclusive and empowering

Democracy is widely viewed as the only legitimate form of government. We all so often praise democratic organisations and pour scorn on centralised elites. It is an idea that is seen as a universal good. Except, for some reason, within the Labour party, where efforts to democratise internal elections have proved to be somewhat controversial.

With party conference approaching, there are various motions that will be put to the vote. But the one that has garnered most attention are the efforts to lower the threshold of MP and MEP votes needed for leadership candidates to get on the ballot paper, and ensure members get more of a say on who next steers the party. These efforts to democratise Labour have been characterised by some as being on behalf of a leftwing old guard who care more about capturing the party than winning general elections, those who are more interested in Labour party structures than the Labour party governing. But, in reality, the precise opposite is true.

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Here’s what Theresa May would say in Florence – if she really cared about Britain | Polly Toynbee

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 05:00:25 GMT2017-09-21T05:00:25Z

The prime minister should do the right thing by us and Europe. But don’t hold your breath

Sitting at her desk, Theresa May is drafting her Florence speech for Friday. The time has come, she finally decides, to put country before party; to abandon the vain attempt to bind together her party’s utterly incompatible factions. What’s the point? There’s no possible EU deal that would induce John Redwood and Liam Fox to agree with Anna Soubry and Ken Clarke, no fence left to sit on. She must become the prime minister no one thinks she is.

Related: Time isn’t on her side: Theresa May must set out her Brexit plan this week | Anand Menon and Jonathan Portes

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Austen gets lost in Pascoe's Pride and Prejudice: is her novel unadaptable?

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:54:44 GMT2017-09-21T09:54:44Z

Standup Sara Pascoe’s scattershot production throws into relief how funny Elizabeth Bennet and co already were, without any need of updating

Jane Austen gazes out from the £10 notes handed over for interval ice-creams. Or is she glaring? Her inscrutable expression is now printed on the currency that Austen’s despairing female protagonists were desperate to secure through marriage. These particular notes are changing hands at the Nottingham Playhouse, where yet another adaptation of Pride and Prejudice is being staged.

Comedian Sara Pascoe is the latest to wrestle with the modern-day relevance of Austen’s marriage plotting. Out goes the Regency-era restraint, along with any shred of subtext. Using a play-within-a-play structure, this new version careers between a GCSE English cheat-sheet and an attempt at pithy contemporary critique.

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I think I'm too old for Call of Duty, send help | Keith Stuart

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 06:10:26 GMT2017-09-21T06:10:26Z

I was once a sharp shooter but I’m being outgunned by younger competitors. If this was the real military, I’d be honourably discharged

There comes a point in every athlete’s career when they realise they are what commentators often euphemistically refer to as “off the pace”. They’re not winning those 50/50 balls anymore, they’re not as fast, they’re getting injured more often and it’s taking longer to recover. The same thing happens in competitive video games, and I think it’s pretty much happened to me.

Earlier this month, games publisher Activision ran two closed beta tests for Call of Duty: WWII, the latest title in the blisteringly fast online multiplayer shooter series. Betas are early previews in which a selection of people are invited to play the game online while the developers study the data to make sure the servers work and that nothing gets in the way of the shooting.

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It’s bad enough as a foster child without being demonised | Dawn Foster

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 05:00:25 GMT2017-09-21T05:00:25Z

The issue of young people in foster care only seems to make headlines when the story is negative. They and those who care for them deserve better

One of the less welcome side-effects of the news in 2017 is that terror attacks now seem routine: the responses less drawn out, life quickly reverting to normal for those unaffected. After the failed Parsons Green bomb, the tube system swiftly ran again, and people in the capital carried on. Few demanded more powers be granted to the government – Donald Trump’s call to switch the internet off aside.

But when arrests began, and it emerged that two of the suspects had shared a foster home, several TV news producers contacted me, as one of the few journalists who grew up in care, asking whether I would argue that the fostering system needed “tightening up” in an unspecified way. It’s unclear what answer they expected – their lack of familiarity with the intricacies of the fostering system hampered any attempts at elucidation – but my arguments weren’t deemed snappy enough for television clips.

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Theresa's speech to the UN proved that it's not only a British audience the Maybot can lose | John Crace

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 20:35:39 GMT2017-09-20T20:35:39Z

Gentle threats over UN funding, a warning to North Korea and a swipe at Syria – PM goes through motions as delegates doze off

Under normal circumstances, a speech to the United Nations general assembly would be a big deal. But with the week that Theresa May has just had, involving trying to deal with Boris – not to mention this Friday’s Florence EU gig – talking to the UN was a bit of light R&R.

A chance to let off a bit of steam and say what was on her mind, safe in the knowledge that there would be no tricky questions from nosy reporters. The biggest embarrassment she was likely to face was another world leader dozing off during the translation.

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Hollywood should call out lying politicians. Jimmy Kimmel shows how | Arwa Mahdawi

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 17:34:39 GMT2017-09-20T17:34:39Z

Celebrities are the unofficial legislators of American public opinion. Kimmel is using his platform to fight for better healthcare

Hold the front page: in today’s breaking news, it would appear that politicians are liars. We’ve got late-night host Jimmy Kimmel to thank for this shocking revelation. Kimmel opened up Tuesday’s show by calling out Louisiana senator Bill Cassidy for lying to him about his plans to remove healthcare for millions of Americans.

In May, “after my son had open heart surgery, which was something I spoke about on the air [Cassidy] was on my show and he wasn’t very honest,” Kimmel said. “He said he would only support a healthcare bill that made sure a child like mine would get the health coverage he needs, no matter how much money his parents make.”

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Ryanair chief claims he can force pilots to give up a week of leave

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 12:26:00 GMT2017-09-21T12:26:00Z

Michael O’Leary says pilots do not have a ‘difficult job’ but admits he cannot rule out further flight cancellations into November

The Ryanair chief executive, Michael O’Leary, has escalated the airline’s dispute with pilots, saying they do not have a “difficult job” and claiming he can force them to defer their time off.

O’Leary is scrambling to prevent more disruption to Ryanair’s schedule after cancelling up to 50 flights a day due to a rota “mess-up” that left it short of pilots.

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William G Stewart, host of 15 to 1, dies aged 84

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:55:32 GMT2017-09-21T17:55:32Z

Presenter of ‘properly tough’ Channel 4 quiz was also a producer and director of TV sitcoms and other gameshows

William G Stewart, the long-time host of the popular TV quiz show 15 to 1, has died aged 84.

Stewart, a producer and director of TV sitcoms and gameshows who began his television career behind the camera, presented the Channel 4 show from 1988 to 2003.

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Hinkley Point C: fresh strike threat over pay dispute

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 17:29:27 GMT2017-09-21T17:29:27Z

Nuclear plant construction facing further delays as unions declare plans to ballot civil engineers in row over bonuses

The UK’s first new nuclear power plant for 20 years could be delayed again, after trade unions for construction staff working on the £20bn Hinkley Point C project announced a ballot for strike action in a dispute over pay.

More than 95% of members balloted by GMB and Unite rejected a pay increase offered by the French energy company EDF and its contractor Bylor after months of discussions.

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New figures reveal scale of controversial leasehold homes

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:00:32 GMT2017-09-21T14:00:32Z

DCLG estimates that 1.4m houses and 2.9m flats have been sold with such contracts as government considers ban on new sales by developers

The number of leasehold houses in England is significantly higher than previously estimated, according to new government figures released before an expected ban on future sales by developers.

The Department for Communities and Local Government said there were 1.4m leasehold houses in England in 2015-16, compared with the previous estimate of 1.2m in 2014-15, following a change in methodology to include socially rented properties.

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Ian Brady had locked cases of his belongings removed before death

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 10:34:37 GMT2017-09-21T10:34:37Z

Moors murderer asked for briefcases to be taken from his hospital room shortly before he died of heart failure, inquest told

Moors murderer Ian Brady asked for locked briefcases of his possessions to be removed from his hospital room before his death from natural causes earlier this year aged 79.

The detail emerged at an inquest which also concluded that Brady had died of cor pulmonale, a form of heart failure, caused by bronchopneumonia and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or lung disease.

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Drax boss Dorothy Thompson to step down after 12 years

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:08:17 GMT2017-09-21T14:08:17Z

Will Gardiner, the group’s chief financial officer, will take over in January as company focuses on gas, biomass and battery power

The long-serving chief executive of the UK’s biggest power station is stepping down, as the North Yorkshire-based business continues its pursuit of a future beyond coal.

Drax Group’s Dorothy Thompson will be succeeded by Will Gardiner, currently the chief financial officer, who will take over in January at a time when the company is eyeing a mix of gas, biomass and battery power to replace coal.

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UK army instructors in court over claims they physically abused teen recruits

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:34:06 GMT2017-09-21T14:34:06Z

Ten defendants deny charges of ill-treatment and battery of 12 recruits at Army Foundation College in Harrogate

Ten army instructors have appeared in court accused of physically abusing teenage recruits at a military college.

The non-commissioned officers face a total of 29 charges – 23 of ill-treatment and six of battery – relating to events said to have taken place over a nine-day period in the summer of 2014.

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Police question man and woman after body found in south London garden

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:57:30 GMT2017-09-21T13:57:30Z

Police arrest 40-year-old man and 34-year-old woman after badly burned body was found by firefighters at Wandsworth house

A man and a woman have been arrested on suspicion of murder after a body was discovered in the garden of a house in south-west London.

Firefighters who put out a fire at the address on Wimbledon Park Road in Wandsworth called police at about 6.30pm on Wednesday to report the body.

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Sadiq Khan to speak at Labour conference after party rethink

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 12:33:40 GMT2017-09-21T12:33:40Z

London mayor initially denied chance to address the floor when leadership decided to allow more time for members to speak

Sadiq Khan has finally secured a speaking slot at Labour conference next week after a party committee overruled a previous decision that he would be blocked from the programme.

The London mayor will now have to start writing a last-minute speech after the conference arrangements committee (CAC) managed to secure him a slot.

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Slough man jailed for spreading Isis propaganda

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 11:46:38 GMT2017-09-21T11:46:38Z

Taha Hussain, a friend of London Bridge attacker, shared material saying politicians, police and soldiers were ‘best people to kill’

A friend of the ringleader of the London Bridge terror attack has been jailed for four and a half years after making Isis propaganda videos outside Windsor Castle.

Taha Hussain, 21, from Berkshire, and another radical extremist filmed themselves driving around the castle and at the nearby Coldstream Guards barracks shouting Isis slogans and threatening to topple a statue of Queen Victoria.

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Parsons Green bombing: police release 21-year-old man

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:45:03 GMT2017-09-21T16:45:03Z

Man, thought to be Yahyah Farroukh, released as officers search Thornton Heath house after arrest of teenager

A 21-year-old man who was arrested in connection with the Parsons Green terrorist attack has been released from custody with no further action, Scotland Yard has said.

The man – understood to be Yahyah Farroukh, who was arrested in Hounslow on Saturday – was released as police were searching a property in south London after arresting a sixth person in connection with the tube bombing.

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Racism label should not deter British police from FGM fight, says officer

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 07:49:12 GMT2017-09-21T07:49:12Z

Safeguarding girls from genital mutilation and avoiding complacency must remain priority, says Operation Limelight leader

Claims of racism over female genital mutilation (FGM) investigations should not be allowed to disrupt a police initiative targeting families coming into the UK from countries where the practice is prevalent, one of the officers leading the project has said.

Insp Allen Davis of the Metropolitan police’s child abuse and sexual offences command is part of Operation Limelight, a team of about 30 police officers, Border Force officials and social workers who meet flights coming in from countries where children might have been taken for FGM over the summer holidays. Among others they focus on flights coming into the UK from Egypt, Nigeria and other African countries including Ethiopia.

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UK budget deficit narrows as shoppers boost VAT receipts

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 11:17:08 GMT2017-09-21T11:17:08Z

Public finances still rising as a proportion of GDP despite unexpectedly strong figures for August

Britain’s public sector spending deficit dropped to its lowest August total since 2007 after an increase in VAT revenues and a squeeze on local authority borrowing.

The deficit in August stood at £5.7bn, down 18% compared with the same month last year, beating forecasts of £7.1bn in a Reuters poll of economists.

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DNA editing in human embryos reveals role of fertility 'master gene'

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 17:02:36 GMT2017-09-20T17:02:36Z

In a first for the UK, genome editing has been used to understand embryo development, and could help uncover the causes of recurrent miscarriages

Scientists in Britain have revealed the role of a fertility “master gene” in one of the world’s first demonstrations of DNA editing in human embryos.

The study, which marks a first for the UK, could help uncover the cause of recurrent miscarriages and lead to more effective fertility treatments. It also raises ethical questions about the prospect of controversial gene editing techniques being used clinically to correct defects in, or even enhance, human embryos in the future.

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Co-op profits fall as it offloads final stake in bank

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:47:26 GMT2017-09-21T13:47:26Z

Mutual group says decline is result of handing discounts to members and losses in its insurance business

The Co-operative Group has reported a fall in profits after handing out £35m to members and community projects, and selling its final 1% stake in the Co-op Bank.

The mutual, which runs grocery shops, funeral homes and an insurance business, said it made underlying pre-tax profits of £14m in the six months to 1 July, down 48% on the same period a year before. The decline was largely the result of a £29m payout in discounts to member shoppers and nearly £6m to local communities under its revived membership rewards scheme. Excluding the member payouts, underlying pretax profits rose 59% to £43m.

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115 peers claim £1.3m despite not speaking in Lords for nine months

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 23:01:18 GMT2017-09-20T23:01:18Z

Electoral Reform Society questions value offered by the ‘worrying number of couch-potato peers and lobby-fodder lords’

More than 100 peers have claimed almost £1.3m between them despite not having spoken in the House of Lords for at least nine months, according to a pressure group.

The Electoral Reform Society (ERS) said an analysis of parliamentary records shows that of the almost 800 peers in the Lords, 115 of them – about 15% of the total – did not contribute in a debate between June 2016 and April 2017 yet claimed an average of £11,091 each.

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Met police chat forum was used to post insults aimed at Gypsies

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 06:00:26 GMT2017-09-21T06:00:26Z

Three police officers and a civilian staff member criticised by Independent Police Complaints Commission for failing to act

Three Metropolitan police officers and a police staff member should face misconduct meetings for participating in an online chat site that carried derogatory comments about Gypsies and Irish Travellers, a watchdog has ruled.

The finding by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) reverses previous internal Met police disciplinary inquiries and has prompted accusations that the force is “incapable” of investigating itself.

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Fake severed hand leads to A19 road closure

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:50:32 GMT2017-09-21T09:50:32Z

Police shut the road near Middlesbrough to investigate a bloody hand and wrist that was found to be a prop

Police who closed a major road after a driver spotted a suspicious item have said it was a realistic-looking fake severed hand.

The Cleveland and Durham Roads Policing Unit shut the A19 near Middlesbrough on Wednesday evening while investigations were carried out, warning that traffic flow would be slower due to officers on the carriageway.

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Further Ryanair cancellations likely as pilots reject cash to work on days off

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:42:45 GMT2017-09-21T09:42:45Z

Airline faces fresh trouble as pilots turn down bonus offer to work on holidays and starting early

Ryanair customers face the threat of a fresh wave of flight cancellations as the airline’s pilots prepare to reject an offer of a cash bonus if they give up days off.

The Guardian has obtained a draft letter signed by Ryanair pilots from across Europe, rejecting the offer and warning they will now “work to rule” - refusing to work beyond their basic contractual obligations. Ryanair had told pilots earlier this week that if they declined the £12,000 payment more flights might have to be scrapped.

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Controversial Lightning Process 'helps children with chronic fatigue syndrome'

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 22:30:17 GMT2017-09-20T22:30:17Z

Trial unexpectedly shows combination of osteopathy, life coaching and neuro-linguistic programming helps children with CFS/ME get better

A controversial treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) called the Lightning Process can help children get better, a trial has shown, much to the surprise of the doctor who put it to the test.

One in every 100 children of secondary school age has CFS, also known as ME, and it can wreck their lives. Those affected miss a year of school on average, many of them getting to classes on just two days a week. Half are bedbound at some stage.

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Bankrupt Lehman Brothers profits from Formula One sale

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 16:31:10 GMT2017-09-21T16:31:10Z

The collapsed bank will sell its stake in Nasdaq-listed auto racing empire, making a hefty $1.5bn from a $300m investment

Creditors of Lehman Brothers are on track for a turbocharged windfall after the collapsed bank announced it is selling its stake in Nasdaq-listed Formula One auto racing, giving it a payout of $1.5bn from a $300m investment.

The offering also brings the chequered flag down on former F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone’s time as a shareholder. The billionaire business magnate is offloading his remaining stake for $20m. Ecclestone first took over the wheel of F1 40 years ago and transformed it from being an amateur hobby into a race series which had revenue of $1.8bn last year.

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Protests planned at Amsterdam urinals over lack of women's toilets

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:49:43 GMT2017-09-21T14:49:43Z

Case of woman caught urinating in public who was told by judge she should have used men’s facilities sparks outrage

Protests are being planned at urinals across Amsterdam over the lack of female public toilet facilities after a judge criticised a woman for not using public male toilets after getting caught short on the streets of the city.

Geerte Piening, 23, was fined after she asked her friends to cover for her as she urinated off a street on a night out in Amsterdam’s Leidseplein district.

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Two in five European Muslims have felt discriminated against – survey

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:20:45 GMT2017-09-21T15:20:45Z

Study for EU’s fundamental rights agency finds 30% say they have been insulted and 2% physically assaulted in past 12 months

Discrimination against Europe’s Muslims is increasing, with two in five (40%) saying they have faced unfair treatment when job- or house-hunting or accessing public services such as education or healthcare, according to the first report of its kind in a decade.

Nearly 30% of respondents in a survey said they had been insulted or called names and 2% had been physically assaulted in the previous 12 months.

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Irish border data underlines huge task facing Brexit negotiators

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:53:10 GMT2017-09-21T14:53:10Z

Official analysis shows scale of potential disruption from hard border, finding there were more than 110m crossings last year

The scale of the difficulties facing Brexit negotiators in disentangling the border between Britain and Ireland has been highlighted by new data showing there were more than 110m border crossings between the two last year.

An official analysis by British and Irish statisticians found there were an estimated 375,900 Irish-born people living in the UK and 277,200 UK-born people living in Ireland.

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No laughing matter: Cameroon students face 10 years in jail for Boko Haram joke

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:28:09 GMT2017-09-21T15:28:09Z

Rights groups demand release of three students whose jovial text message exchange turned sour when teacher confiscated phone and contacted police

Human rights groups are calling for the immediate release of three students given 10-year jail sentences in Cameroon for sharing a joke via text about Boko Haram.

An appeal hearing was due to begin on Thursday in the capital, Yaoundé, but has been postponed until 19 October. The students were found guilty of “non-denunciation of terrorism acts” by a military court on 2 November last year.

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S&P cuts China's credit rating to A+ over rising debt fears

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:36:09 GMT2017-09-21T15:36:09Z

Ratings agency cites concerns over financial and economic risk as country’s total debt hits $28tn

China’s credit rating has been downgraded by Standard & Poor’s amid fears rising debts are adding to economic and financial risks.

The agency lowered China’s sovereign rating by one notch to A+ from AA-, putting it in the same category as countries such as the US and Austria. This is the second downgrade from a major ratings agency for Beijing this year and comes at an awkward time before next month’s Communist party congress.

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Philippines: Duterte says his son will be killed if he is involved in drugs

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 11:12:20 GMT2017-09-21T11:12:20Z

Thousands of critics and supporters hold rival rallies as president pledges to protect police who would kill his son Paolo

The Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, has said he would have his son killed if drug trafficking allegations against the younger politician were true, and that the police who carry out the hit would be protected from prosecution.

Paolo Duterte, 42, appeared this month before a senate inquiry to deny accusations made by an opposition lawmaker that he was a member of a Chinese triad gang who helped smuggle in a huge shipment of crystal methamphetamine from China.

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Marine Le Pen aide Florian Philippot quits Front National

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 06:58:12 GMT2017-09-21T06:58:12Z

French far-right leader’s top strategist says he has been ‘ridiculed’ as he departs amid tensions with his boss after election defeat

The French far-right leader Marine Le Pen has suffered a blow to her crisis-stricken Front National party after her top strategist quit amid bitter infighting over Europe and identity politics in the wake of the presidential election defeat.

Florian Philippot, the young, media-savvy civil servant who was Le Pen’s intellectual right-hand man for eight years and architect of the party’s pledge to quit the euro currency, announced he was leaving the party in an angry breakfast TV interview, saying he had been pushed out.

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‘Sound of a dog barking’: North Korea ridicules Trump threat

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 03:36:37 GMT2017-09-21T03:36:37Z

North Korea’s foreign minister, Ri Yong-ho, responds to Donald Trump calling Kim Jong-un ‘rocket man’

North Korea’s foreign minister, Ri Yong-ho, has issued a withering riposte to Donald Trump, likening his threat to destroy the regime to the “sound of a dog barking”, adding that he “felt sorry” for the US president’s advisers.

In his first speech to the UN general assembly, Trump said on Tuesday the US would be forced to “totally destroy” North Korea if Washington was forced to defend itself or its allies against the country’s missiles.

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Canadian mining firm withdraws threat to quit Greece amid protests

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:33:10 GMT2017-09-21T14:33:10Z

Eldorado Gold says progress has been made with government over issue of permits as miners demonstrate in Athens

Greece’s biggest foreign investor has withdrawn its threat to pull out of the country in a dispute with the government over mining permits, as miners protested in Athens fearing job losses.

George Burns, chief executive of the Canadian mining company Eldorado Gold, said enough accommodation had been reached over the issue of outstanding permits to allow “constructive talks” with the government over its future in the country.

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EU to find ways to make Google, Facebook and Amazon pay more tax

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:42:03 GMT2017-09-21T09:42:03Z

European commission looks at tax rules after report reveals tech firms pay less than half the tax of traditional companies

The EU is pushing ahead with plans to rewrite tax rules for technology companies, aimed at increasing governments’ take from the likes of Google, Facebook and Amazon.

The European commission is looking at ways to capture tax from companies that may have no offices, shops or other physical presence in a country, but are accruing profits through large numbers of online users or customers.

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Leader of gang suspected of murdering British kayaker in Brazil is killed

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 21:25:36 GMT2017-09-20T21:25:36Z

Evanilson Gomes da Costa, leader of ‘Water Rats’ gang, died in hospital of gunshot wounds, say police investigating death of Emma Kelty

One of the leaders of the gang of river pirates who robbed and murdered a British kayaker in the Amazon has been killed, police investigating the death of Emma Kelty have said.

Another man accused of being a leader in the attack, Arthur Gomes da Silva, was arrested and confessed his role, they said.

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South Korea approves $8m aid package for North Korea

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 07:08:10 GMT2017-09-21T07:08:10Z

Decision to release funds for humanitarian programmes for infants and pregnant women risks rift with US and Japan

South Korea has approved an $8m (£5.9m) aid package for North Korea, in a humanitarian gesture at odds with calls by Japan and the US for unwavering economic and diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang.

South Korea’s unification ministry agreed to provide the funds, which will go towards programmes for infants and pregnant women, days after the UN security council agreed a further round of sanctions in response to the regime’s recent nuclear test.

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Political reporter beaten to death in north-east India

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 09:31:29 GMT2017-09-21T09:31:29Z

Shantanu Bhowmick attacked with sticks outside Agartala two weeks after high-profile murder of another journalist

A reporter covering political unrest in India’s north-east was beaten to death during violent clashes, officials have said, two weeks after the high-profile murder of another prominent journalist.

Shantanu Bhowmick was set upon with sticks as he reported on violence on Wednesday between warring political factions and police outside Agartala, the capital of remote Tripura state.

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Volunteers and soldiers search in silence for children at collapsed Mexico school

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 07:26:22 GMT2017-09-21T07:26:22Z

Discovery of 12-year-old Frida Sofía in the rubble keeps Mexicans glued to their TVs in hope of finding a child alive where at least 21 died

A hushed silence has kept falling over the volunteers, soldiers and neighbours congregating outside a collapsed school in southern Mexico City, where rescue workers tried to extract students trapped under the rubble.

A stern-looking officer in jeans and black vest from Mexico’s federal police would raise his fist high above his head signalling silence on Wednesday to enable rescuers with sensitive microphones to listen for cries from the rubble.

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Theresa May speaks out against Trump climate change stance at UN

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 22:57:00 GMT2017-09-20T22:57:00Z

PM ranks US plan to withdraw from Paris treaty alongside North Korean nuclear tests as threat to global security

Theresa May has issued a veiled warning to Donald Trump, arguing that his plan to withdraw from the Paris climate change treaty ranks alongside North Korea’s nuclear missile tests as a threat to global prosperity and security.

In a speech to the United Nations general assembly, the prime minister, whose authority at home has been severely tested since June’s general election result, sought to project her vision of a “rules-based” international order.

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Google to buy part of HTC's smartphone operations for $1bn

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 04:05:42 GMT2017-09-21T04:05:42Z

Deal will not involve purchase of direct stake and HTC will continue to run its remaining phone business

Google has announced a deal to acquire part of Taiwanese firm HTC Corp’s smartphone operations for about $1bn.

The deal will not involve the purchase of a direct stake and HTC will continue to run its remaining smartphone business.

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Whiskey, steroids and softball: prosecutor says 'Kentuckiana' lore is just theft

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 02:08:30 GMT2017-09-21T02:08:30Z

Crime gang targeted Buffalo Trace and Wild Turkey distilleries, including hard to get and pricey bourbon brands

The spiriting away of hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of whiskey had a whiff of romance and “a very Kentuckiana aspect”, a court has heard. But really it was just theft.

Gilbert Curtsinger faces up to 15 years in prison as the ringleader of a bourbon-heist that took an estimated $100,000 worth of liquor, after pleading guilty in a case that has secured a place in Kentucky lore.

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Fathers pass on four times as many new genetic mutations as mothers – study

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 17:00:10 GMT2017-09-20T17:00:10Z

Faults in male DNA are a driver for rare childhood diseases, research suggests, with men passing on one new mutation for every eight months of age

Children inherit four times as many new mutations from their fathers than their mothers, according to research that suggests faults in the men’s DNA are a driver for rare childhood diseases.

Researchers studied 14,000 Icelanders and found that men passed on one new mutation for every eight months of age, compared with women who passed on a new mutation for every three years of age.

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Mueller's Russia team reportedly seeks White House records on Trump actions

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 23:11:02 GMT2017-09-20T23:11:02Z

Investigation appears to enter new phase amid reports of request for documents related to Trump’s most controversial actions since taking office

The special counsel Robert Mueller has asked the White House to provide documents related to Donald Trump’s most controversial actions since taking office in January, according to two reports on Wednesday.

The inquiry from Mueller’s team, who is leading the investigation into whether Trump associates coordinated with Russia to influence the 2016 presidential election, suggests that the investigation is moving into a new phase, inching closer to the president.

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Kingsman: The Golden Circle: Colin Firth on the superspy comedy sequel – video

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:25:56 GMT2017-09-21T15:25:56Z

The second Kingsman film sees the dapper British secret agents go up against American supervillain Poppy Adams, played by Julianne Moore, with the help of Statesman, their US equivalent. Kingsman: The Golden Circle is out now in the UK, and is released on 21 September in Australia and 22 September in the US.

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Portugal's biggest wildfire: 'We all thought we were going to die' – video

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 07:00:11 GMT2017-09-19T07:00:11Z

On 17 June, a fire swept through the forests of central Portugal, killing 64 people and destroying more than 480 houses. After a summer of record numbers of wildfires across southern Europe, the Guardian travelled to devastated villages in Portugal to find out why the June fire was so deadly, and what can be done to prevent it happening again

*Satellite imagery courtesy of Deimos Imaging, an UrtheCast Company

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'We are the outcasts': my day with the Juggalos - video

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 08:31:57 GMT2017-09-18T08:31:57Z

Fans of the Insane Clown Posse - otherwise known as Juggalos - were classified as a gang by the FBI in 2011. They have been fighting the label ever since, claiming they are just music fans and have no ties to criminal activity. The Guardian spent the day with the Juggalos as they protested in Washington DC.

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