Top story: "The local government is alive"

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Almost all councils in England plan to increase their tax from April and three quarters intend to raise it above 2.75%, according to a study. Most councils also warned that they would continue to reduce a range of services, from adult social services to libraries and recycling, while increasing fees.

The local government information unit think-tank said that eight years of austerity had cost the British councils 40% of their central funding. Last week, Somerset and Northamptonshire County Councils reversed the trend of winter blues when untreated roads resulted in car accidents, while potholes and cuts in libraries were greeted by the locals.

"Years of chronic underfunding have left the local government on a vital support," said the director of the think tank, Dr. Jonathan Carr-West. The local government ministry said the councils were to receive an additional £ 1 billion over the next year.

Airbus must stop manufacturing the A380 – Airbus announced this morning that it was going to stop production of its super A380 powerplant, which could jeopardize jobs in the UK. The airline said it had made the "painful" decision after the Emirates airline reduced its last order of jetliners from 162 to 123.

An Airbus A380 taking off from its maiden flight departing from Toulouse-Blagnac airport.

An Airbus A380 taking off from its maiden flight departing from Toulouse-Blagnac airport. Photography: Lionel Bonaventure / AFP / Getty Images

Airbus Chief Executive Tom Enders said, "The A380 is not just an outstanding technical and industrial achievement. Passengers around the world love flying on this big plane. Today's announcement is painful for us and the A380 communities around the world. Emirates has not yet received delivery of 14 aircraft, some of which are manufactured in the United Kingdom.

"I just want to go home" – Shamima Begum, a former schoolgirl from east London, who fled Britain to join the Islamic State at the age of 15, claims to be nine months pregnant and that she has been in prison. she wants to go home.

Shamima Begum on a police photograph distributed in 2015.

Shamima Begum on a police photograph handed over in 2015. Photo: Metropolitan Police / EPA

Begum, who lives in a Syrian refugee camp, told the Times that she had fled the last jihadist enclave in Baghuz after the death of her other two children from illness and malnutrition. "I will do all that is necessary to be able to go home and live peacefully with my child." Kadiza Sultana and Amira Abase, from her colleagues at the Bethnal Green Academy, flew to the airport from Gatwick in Turkey in 2015, then entered Syria. Begum told The Times that they were all married to foreign Isis fighters and that she had first settled in Raqqa, where the sight of a "Head decapitated" in a trash did not bother him. Begum has confirmed information that Sultana died in 2016 during an airstrike on Raqqa. She gave a contradictory account of the so-called caliphate. "There was so much oppression and corruption that I did not think they deserved the win," she said. However, she added, "I do not regret coming here." The lawyer representing Shamima Begum's family said she should be allowed to go home and treated as a victim, as Scotland Yard originally described. But the case will pose a dilemma to the Foreign Office and Interior Secretary, Sajid Javid, who will have to decide whether Begum's permission should be allowed to return to the UK .

The pressure of the popular vote is rising – Jeremy Corbyn is warned of the resignation of his seat if he does not support the vote of a people on the Brexit. Anti-Brexit MEPs believe it's time to act after May rejected Labor's calls for a customs union. Treasury Finance Minister Clive Lewis has called on Labor to "go after our conference policy that supports the people's vote." The House of Commons is due to vote today on a government motion calling for the next stage of Brexit negotiations – and Hardline Brexit supporters threaten to inflict another defeat in May, fearing that the government will actually refuses to leave the EU without agreement. Labor MP Geraint Davies tabled an amendment calling for a referendum. "There is a hidden majority in the house that wants to support this position … but we are running out of time," said Davies. Senior labor officials, including Keir Starmer, have met with ministers to repeat Corbyn's five requests to back a Brexit deal and ask for changes to Theresa May's red lines. Other meetings are planned next week.

Portraits of serial murderers – The FBI has published sketches made by a serial killer of its alleged victims, in the hope that they could help solve dozens of unsolved homicides. Samuel Little has confessed to murdering 90 women in nearly four decades.

Drawings of Samuel Little, convicted murderer, based on his memories of some of his female victims from all over the United States.

Drawings of Samuel Little, convicted murderer, based on his memories of some of his female victims from all over the United States. Photo: AFP / Getty Images

According to the FBI, few targeted people were "vulnerable and marginalized women, often involved in prostitution and drug addicts". He hopes that this information will generate tips and clues from the public that can help solve the dozens of homicides. The FBI announced that 78-year-old Little was in poor health and should stay in a Texas jail, where he is serving his life sentence after three murders in California.

Secret Nissan Millions – The Labor Party has accused the Secretary of State for European Affairs, Greg Clark, of misleading the MEPs by failing to tell Parliament that an envelope of 61 million pounds of paper money was owed. State had been granted to Nissan. The details appeared this month when the automaker changed its mind about building the X-Trail SUV in Sunderland. The Government argued that the promise had been validated by the Independent Industrial Development Advisory Board and that it was not necessary to report it to Parliament.

Short Manafort brand a liar – Paul Manafort told lies about an affair with an alleged Russian intelligence agent even after agreeing to cooperate with Robert Mueller's investigation, a judge ruled. This decision frees Trump-Russia investigators from an advocacy deal with Manafort, Donald Trump's former campaign chairman. As part of this deal, Manafort pleaded guilty to conspiring to scam the US and conspiring to obstruct justice. The other charges against him were dropped. At that time, Manafort had been convicted of eight counts in a separate fraud case against him by Mueller in Virginia. Mueller said the lies told to the investigators were new crimes.

Lost opportunity – The rover of Mars Opportunity is dead, announced with regret the scientists of NASA. He was to survive only 90 Martian days and cover 1 km after his landing in 2004, but he was able to survive 15 years and 45 km until a dust storm permanently interrupted communications.

Rover of occasion

Efforts to restore contact with Oppy have been doomed to failure. Photography: AP

The Twin Spirit rover of opportunity ran out in 2011, while the largest Mars Curiosity rover is still used after more than six years.

Podcast Today in Focus: Selling a Kidney to Reach Europe

Desperate to reach Europe, Africans travel to Egypt and sell parts of their bodies to pay for their passage.

A boat carrying migrants stranded in the Strait of Gibraltar.

A boat carrying migrants stranded in the Strait of Gibraltar. Photo: Marcos Moreno / AFP / Getty Images

Seán Columb has spent more than five years researching this topic. In addition: Ruth Maclean on the upcoming elections in Nigeria.

Noon reading: Neo-Nazis who want to lead Slovakia

In 2013, the extreme right-wing man Marian Kotleba won a shock victory in the regional elections in Slovakia. He moved to the governor's mansion in Banská Bystrica – where he set up a gymnasium in the basement for his corpulent entourage, and brought a printing press to distribute pamphlets denouncing corrupt politicians, "gypsy criminals", promiscuity, abortion and homosexuality as threats to Slovak life.

Marian Kotleba, leader of the far right party Our party Slovakia.

Marian Kotleba, leader of the far right party Our party Slovakia. Illustration: Guardian Design

Three years later, Kotleba lost his governorship but managed to get his far-right party to parliament, where he won 14 seats out of 150 in the Slovak legislature. In March, he will run for president. Shaun Walker follows the rise of a political extremist who venerates Slovakia's past as a Nazi puppet state.


Tottenham boosted their hopes in the Champions League by crushing Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund with a second-half blitz from Son Heung-min in the first leg of their quarter-final match. In Amsterdam, Marco Asensio scored Real Madrid's 2-1 win over Ajax, which left a frustrated VAR goal. The IAAF categorically rejected the report that it wanted Olympic female 800m champion Caster Semenya to be classified as a biological man when her historic record will be heard next week.

British cyclist Callum Skinner, gold medalist at the British Olympic Games, urged his fellow athletes to enroll in a new global body that he believes will defend their rights – and will ensure that they are no longer treated with "disdain" by the IOC and Wada. Shannon Gabriel was suspended for the first four ODI against England following the altercation on the pitch that prompted Joe Root to tell him "there is no harm in being gay". And after six days of suspension due to an equine flu outbreak, jockeys, bookies and punters felt relief when the hooves hit the ground again at Plumpton.


Japan's economic growth in the last three months of 2018 rebounded after the slowdown in the previous quarter, recording annual growth of 1.4%. Cabinet Office data shows a recovery in exports, consumer demand, investment and government spending. GDP was contracted during the July-September quarter. Japan plans to raise its consumption tax in October from 8% to 10% in October, which could slow consumer spending.

The pound is trading at around USD 1.286 and EUR 1.140, while the FTSE is expected to open slightly higher.

The papers

the Time leads with his extraordinary talk with one of the schoolgirls who left London to join Isis four years ago: "Bring me home". the guardian Splash is: "The Labor MPs warn Corbyn: support a second referendum or we leave", while the FT "The Dutch Prime Minister has said that the Netherlands has already swept away British companies."

Guardian cover page, Thursday 14 February 2019

Cover of the Guardian, Thursday, February 14, 2019.

There is health news on the front page of some newspapers. the Telegraph "The judge requests the revision of the law on the fertility of transgender", the Express officials commit to a cure for cystic fibrosis: "We will deal with the miracle drug", Mail warned against Camilla's fad diets, warned the Duchess against diets without dairy products and against I reports "New Statin Diet for Over 40s".

the Mirror is outraged that Gordon Banks has missed the title of knight: "No justice" and the Sun continues his reporting on Wayne Rooney's wedding: "The roses are red, the violets are blue, I love my 4 boys, but it's a detox for Roo."

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