Politics |Briefing

Briefing: Spain ready to force Catalan election, two Italian regions plan autonomy votes

Talk (3)

Pete Young

Pete Young

"Hi, Harry, just a thought: It might b..."
Harry Ridgewell

Harry Ridgewell

"Thanks. Yeah he was there for the mor..."
Pete Young

Pete Young

"Good morning Harry, et al. Would it b..."

WikiTribune’s tracking these stories and more. To contribute, please sign up and add to this briefing, submit your own report or collaborate on the news with us.

Update

  • The central government of Spain plans to hold elections in Catalonia in January after dissolving the region’s parliament. It has support from the main opposition party, the PSOE (Socialist). Madrid will hold a cabinet meeting on Saturday to trigger Article 155 of its constitution, which allows the central government to take back some or all power from Spain’s 17 autonomous regions.
  • Meanwhile, two of Italy’s wealthiest regions – Lombardy and Veneto – are holding their own referendums to seek greater autonomy. Together they account for thirty percent of Italy’s GDP. The two regions see economic benefits which pro-independence groups claim will come from loosening Rome’s grip. (More European independence movements here)
  • The Iraqi-Kurdistan dispute has escalated further with clashes between Iraqi troops and Kurdish peshmerga in Alton Kupri in northern Kirkuk. An on-the-scene BBC correspondent reported that there had been rocket, artillery and machine-gun fire. This comes days after Iraqi troops took over southern Kirkuk and the town of Sinjar.
    • Reuters reports that the Kurdish peshmerga’s withdrawal from Kirkuk came after intense pressure from Iran.

Earlier

  • Obama and Bush denounced deep national divisions without naming U.S. President Donald J. Trump, according to The Washington Post. George W. Bush criticized “bullying and prejudice” in public life while Barack Obama said Americans should reject the politics of “division” and “fear”. Speaking at a Democratic campaign event in Newark, New Jersey, Obama said:  “Some of the politics we see now, we thought we put that to bed. That’s folks looking 50 years back. It’s the 21st century, not the 19th century. Come on!”
  • European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he did not believe that Britain would leave the European Union with no Brexit deal. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said: “In contrast to how it is portrayed in the British press, my impression is that these talks are moving forward step by step.” Despite this, the other 27 EU leaders are expected to rule that there has not been enough progress to enter trade talks.
  • Donald Tusk, the European Council President, has ruled out EU action in Catalonia. He said “there is no room, no space for any kind of mediation or international initiative or action,” at a joint news conference with EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. Other European leaders, including Germany’s Angela Merkel and France’s Emmanuel Macron, backed the Spanish prime minister.
    • In a WikiTribune essay, former French ambassador Jean-Jacques Subrenat explains how Catalonia isn’t the only EU region with independence movements.
  • The “Czech Trump” is expected to be elected prime minister in the Czech Republic, according to the Guardian. Billionaire Andrej Babiš, the country’s second richest man with a hard stance against immigration, is favourite to win the election despite having been charged with fraud and accused of former links to communist-era secret police.
  • North Korea sent a letter to Australia urging it to distance itself from U.S. President Donald J. Trump, according to The Sydney Morning Herald. Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said the letter demonstrated that diplomatic pressure on North Korea was working. She also said that the letter had been sent to other nations.

What we’re reading

  • The Lancet, a health and medicine journal, released a study that found that 16 percent of deaths in the world are caused by air and water pollution. That’s 15 times more than deaths caused by war and violence – Charles Turner
  • In a WikiTribune piece, former French ambassador, Jean-Jacques Subrenat outlines how Brexit could be reversed.
  • The Wall Street Journal’s outlines how Albert Einstein thought quantum mechanics was fundamentally flawed. He was wrong. But only three decades ago, quantum computers were the stuff of science fiction. Now, Google is getting ready to test its quantum computer in the hope of achieving “quantum supremacy”, a milestone that would herald a new era in computing – George Engels
  • Sexual predators have no time period. This Washington Post piece recounts the 1855 case, Missouri v. Celia, where an enslaved woman was on trial for the murder of her white owner who raped her. The story is telling of how cruel slavery was in America, and how dire the situation was for female slaves – Lydia Morrish
  • A Mother Jones investigation uncovered how Republicans suppressed the votes of young people and African-Americans in Wisconsin; and how it likely influenced the vote swinging in favour of Donald J. Trump in the 2016 U.S. Election.” – Linh Nguyen

 


Started by

United Kingdom
Harry is one of the journalists at WikiTribune. He is a masters graduand from Cardiff University, with a diploma in Magazine Journalism. He has an interest in politics and science, having previously studied Geography at Aberystwyth University. Follow Harry on Twitter @harryridgewell

History for stories "Briefing: Spain ready to force Catalan election, two Italian regions plan autonomy votes"

Select two items to compare revisions

17 April 2018

12 April 2018

Talk for Story "Briefing: Spain ready to force Catalan election, two Italian regions plan autonomy votes"

Talk about this Story

  1. Rewrite

    Hi, Harry, just a thought: It might be nice to get something into the briefing that’s not just European, to appeal to U.S. readers. I think an argument could be made that what Obama (and Bush) said is pretty newsy, compared with things that have yet to happen in Spain and Italy. (Yes, I know that betrays an American bias. Sorry.)

  2. Rewrite

    Good morning Harry, et al. Would it be possible to get Obama into the headline of the briefing, since he’s the lead photo? Otherwise the home page doesn’t explain why he’s there.

    1. Rewrite

      Thanks. Yeah he was there for the morning update I did but have changed it to reflect the afternoon update

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive news, alerts and updates

Support Us

Why this is important and why you should care about facts, journalism and democracy

WikiTribune Open menu Close Search Like Previous page Next page Back Next Open menu Close menu Play video RSS Feed Share on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Instagram Follow us on Youtube Connect with us on Linkedin Email us Message us on Facebook Messenger Save for Later