Weekly News Briefing: £1 coin, Mexico Earthquake, North Korea, Brexit & The Rohingya Massacre

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Puerto Rico devastated by Hurricane Maria

Still recovering from the impact of Hurricane Irma from two weeks ago, Puerto Rico’s cobbled streets were transformed into raging rivers on Wednesday, as the category four Hurricane Maria unleashed almost 40 inches of rain in just 24 hours.

Winds of up to 155mph ripped trees from the earth and homes were lifted from their foundations, with Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rosselló numbering it among the worst storms to make landfall in “modern history.”

The £1 coin is going out in October 16th

The round £1 coin will soon lose its status as legal tender. In practice, shops can refuse to accept these coins from 16 October. They have been used alongside the new 12-sided £1 coin since March – a period called co-circulation. Royal Mint estimate that around 500 million round pounds are in circulation. Dig them out, pop them in the bank before its too late.

North Korea wont let up on its nuclear ambitions.

North Korea carried out a massive nuclear test on 3 September which was widely condemned at the UN. North Korea has refused to stop its missile and nuclear tests, despite successive rounds of UN sanctions and international criticism. Its leaders say nuclear capabilities are its only deterrent against an outside world seeking to destroy it. Kim Jong-un and Donald trump have also had a spat via National TV and Twitter.  Following Trumps latest tweet, N Korea has issued its latest Hydrogen bomb threat.

Desperate Rohingya refugees grab handouts of clothing and food in Tankhali, Bangladesh, on Friday, September 15. As many as 400,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh since August 25, according to the United Nations. 

The Rohingya are a Muslim minority who live in Myanmar’s Rakhine State but are not recognised as citizens by the government. They are considered by human rights groups to be among the world’s most persecuted people. Amnesty International accused Myanmar’s military of deliberately torching Muslim-minority Rohingya villages near the Bangladesh border in a campaign of “ethnic cleansing,” 

Nobel peace prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi, has been criticised over her silence for the persecution of the Rohingya, not everyone is a champion of human rights like late Nelson Mandela.

Brexit: Theresa May speech on Brexit divorce creates a stir in Europe & at Home

On Friday, Theresa May made suggestions including a two-year transition period after Brexit, when the UK leaves the EU – during which trade should continue on current terms and that the UK pay the EU for “commitments” previously made. She did not specify how much the UK would be prepared to pay during the transition period.

The first response by a European leader to the speech, Mr Macron welcomed her initiative, but said the British position still needed to be ironed out. Emmanuel Macron said the issues of EU citizens’ rights, the exit bill and the Irish border question must be settled before talks could be held on trade. Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn acknowledged a transition was needed to provide stability for businesses and workers.


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