child poverty, Theresa May, British aid
Poverty hits hundreds of thousands more people; Brexit-deal talks on track for progress; foreign-aid scheme suspended for funding extremists in Syria (Photos: Getty Images)


Today’s headlines 04/12

The top stories in 60 seconds

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By Kuba Shand-Baptiste on

Theresa May in Brexit talks with EU president today

The prime minister is expected to make headway in reaching a deal with the EU when she meets with the European Commission's president, Jean-Claude Juncker, and chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier today. Theresa May will be expected to deliver an offer that includes no hard border in Ireland, protecting EU citizens’ rights and the promise of a financial settlement to the bloc on leaving. As Reuters reports, while the latter two issues have largely been agreed on, the issue of securing a deal on the UK border with Ireland remains an issue, which could delay moving talks on to the next stage.

UK at "turning point" in battle against poverty

Over one in five people in the UK currently live in poverty, according to a report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF). The study also shows a significant increase in poverty among young people and the elderly, with 400,000 and 300,000 more children and pensioners respectively struck by poverty compared with five years ago. The JRF have cited welfare reforms as a major cause for the decline in living standards and have called on the government to put an end to the freeze on working-age benefits and tax credits, among other recommendations.
The Independent

British-aid scheme suspended over allegations of payments to Syrian extremists

A foreign-aid scheme worth millions of pounds has been halted over claims that members of the Free Syrian Police, a civilian police force funded by the scheme, were being forced to hand over money to jihadist groups. It was also reported that some of the officers from the Free Syrian Police had been working with courts that had practised torture and executions without trial. The Foreign Office affirmed the suspension of the scheme yesterday, ahead of a BBC Panorama documentary on the subject that is due to air on Monday evening.  
The Guardian

Co-op to ignore best-before date to cut down on food waste

Co-op supermakets will sell food that has surpassed its best-before date at reduced prices, so as to curb food waste. The supermarket will be the first major retailer to take such an approach, and will see tinned products and dried food sold for 10p. The initiative starts today and forms part of the Co-op’s "Guide to Dating" campaign, which advises customers: “Don’t be a binner. Have it for dinner!” as part of its slogan. Speaking to Sky News, Roger Grosvenor, joint chief executive of East of England Co-op, called the change “ a sensible move to reduce food waste and keep edible food in the food chain”.
Sky News

Facebook opens London hub

Facebook is opening its new central London hub today, a base that has been touted to create 800 new jobs by 2018 and is the company’s biggest outside of America. The social-media company is also expected to have 2,300 employees in the UK by the end of next year and marks the company’s 10th year in Britain. The building spans seven floors and will also serve as an incubator for start-ups. Chancellor Philip Hammond called the opening of the hub a “sign of confidence” in Britain.
BBC News


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Poverty hits hundreds of thousands more people; Brexit-deal talks on track for progress; foreign-aid scheme suspended for funding extremists in Syria (Photos: Getty Images)
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