News of the Week: 25 – 31 December 2016


A summary of the week’s main stories


December 25


Christmas ‘hostage to materialism’, says Pope Francis – BBC

We live in a time “when the lights of commerce cast the light of God into the shadows, when we are concerned for gifts, but cold towards those who are marginalised”


Queen’s Christmas message: ‘Small acts of goodness’ inspire – BBC

Thousands of “small acts of goodness” can make a difference, even though the world’s problems often seem too big to change


Russian military plane crashes into Black Sea, ‘killing 92’ – BBC

The Tu-154 was carrying soldiers, reporters and 64 members of the famed Alexandrov military music ensemble who were to perform for Russian troops


Berlin attacker urged nephew to kill relative for Isil – The Telegraph

The Berlin lorry attacker urged his teenage nephew to kill his uncle, a police officer, to prove his allegiance to Islamic State


December 26


Britain should be ‘confident’ about Brexit and quit Single Market, former Bank of England governor says – The Telegraph

Britain should be “self-confident” about Brexit and Theresa May must “stop pretending” that the UK will still be a member of the Single Market


December 27


Argentina ex-leader Cristina Fernandez charged in corruption case – BBC

A federal judge approved charges of illicit association and fraudulent administration against Ms Fernandez


UK Armed Forces braced for more cuts in defence cash squeeze – The Telegraph

Senior defence sources have disclosed that there is no longer enough money available for the various spending commitments already made and therefore more savings are necessary


National Front mayor creates ‘Rue du Brexit’ in French town – BBC

The road will sit next to Rue Robert-Schumann and Avenue Jean-Monnet – regarded as founders of the EU


December 28


John Kerry warns Israel over peace deal with Palestinians – BBC

While Trump urges Israel to “stay strong” until he assumes office


Theresa May to fight 2020 election on plans to take Britain out of European Convention on Human Rights following Brexit – The Telegraph

The Prime Minister is understood to be backing plans to “lift and shift” human rights enshrined in the European Convention and write them into UK law


December 29


Syria conflict: Ceasefire agreed, backed by Russia and Turkey – BBC

The two nations, which back opposing sides, will act as guarantors


Theresa May rebukes US for ‘inappropriate’ attack on Israel – The Telegraph

Theresa May has attacked the current US administration over its condemnation of the Israeli government, in comments which appeared to align her with Donald Trump


UK population to grow by more than 12 million if Britain stays in single market, warns think tank – The Telegraph

The UK’s population will grow by more than the entire populations of Bulgaria, Latvia and Lithuania combined if the UK stays in the Single Market after Brexit


Corbyn’s New Year message: I understand lack of trust in EU – BBC

In his New Year message, the Labour leader said the UK now had “the chance to do things differently”


December 30


Putin rules out tit-for-tat expulsion of diplomats – BBC

After the US expelled 35 Russian diplomats amid a row over hacking, Russia has said that rather than retaliate, it will work with the Trump administration on ameliorating relations


Margaret Thatcher had deep misgivings over reunification of Germany, National Archives reveal – The Telegraph

Thatcher feared a resurgent Germany would dominate the Continent


December 31


Trump praises Putin amid hacking expulsions – BBC

He tweeted: “Great move on delay – I always knew he was very smart!”


French workers get ‘right to disconnect’ from emails out of hours – BBC

French employees are getting the legal right to avoid work emails outside working hours