THE RUNDOWN – 14.02.16

Feb 14 2016 BY Eto Worchie

It’s been a busy week. So much so that you probably haven’t had the time to catch up with everything going on in the world. Fortunately (for you), we’ve got your back. Here’s what happened this week in the worlds of Politics, Technology, Sports, Music and Business alongside a few other miscellaneous bits that caught our eye.

 

 

World

medvedev

  • The Russian president this week said the world is slipping into a “new cold war” after European leaders condemned his country’s airstrikes on Syria and called on Vladimir Putin to end them as a precursor for peace negotiations.
  • Pope Francis kicked off his first day in Mexico with a long popemobile ride past adoring crowds, launching into a day that started with tough-love speeches to the country’s political and church elite and was due to end with a silent prayer before the Virgin of Guadalupe at the largest and most important Marian shrine in the world.
  • The Supreme Court chief justice, John Roberts, the Republican Texas governor Greg Abbott and the US marshals service confirmed that Scalia had died. In a statement, Roberts said: “On behalf of the court and retired justices, I am saddened to report that our colleague Justice Antonin Scalia has passed away
  • Scandinavia’s first female-led mosque has opened in Copenhagen in a bid to challenge “patriarchal structures” and create debate and dialogue, its founder has said.
  • The European commission on Saturday pledged to study a report claiming that Swedish furniture giant Ikea may have underpaid taxes by €1bn between 2009 and 2014 due to aggressive tax strategies.
  • Somalia’s al-Shabaab insurgents have claimed responsibility for an explosion that left a gaping hole in an Airbus A321 last week. The suspected suicide bomber was sucked out of the Daallo Airlines plane through a 1m-wide hole when the blast ripped open the cabin in midair on 2 February. The aircraft was forced to make an emergency landing in Mogadishu.

Politics

John-Kerry

  • Hospitals may go it alone and refuse to impose the new contract on junior doctors proposed by the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, on NHS trainee medics from August.
  • John Kerry has urged the UK to remain in the European Union, saying the continent needed to be united, after it emerged Barack Obama would intervene to encourage a remain vote in Britain’s EU referendum.
  • The daughter of the former cabinet minister Andrew Mitchell, a junior NHS doctor, has called for Jeremy Hunt to be sacked, accusing the health secretary of misusing statistics and alienating “an entire generation of junior doctors”.
  • The government has confirmed that it will cut the number of MPs in the House of Commons from 650 to 600, rejecting a report by a cross-party committee of MPs that described the move as unjustified.
  • Nigel Farage is seeking to drum up support among anti-EU donors by saying that Ukip and its allies offer the only guarantee of a unified referendum campaign, which could spend up to £12m, matching or even outpacing the remaining side.

 

Technology

streetmap

  • UK-based digital map provider Streetmap has lost its High Court action accusing Google of abusing its search dominance to promote Google Maps over rivals.
  • After an irate Facebook board member wrote that India is better off under colonialism, many in Silicon Valley’s large and influential Indian population were offended.
  • Norwegian web-browser maker Opera Software is on the verge of being bought for $1.2bn by a consortium of Chinese investors and software companies.
  • MySpace, Facebook’s one-time rival, has a new home. The fallen tech star is now owned by Time Inc, which acquired the company almost by accident after buying ad tech firm Viant.
  • Norwegian web-browser maker Opera Software is on the verge of being bought for $1.2bn by a consortium of Chinese investors and software companies.
  • A culture in which people are more willing to pay for overpriced coffee than a newspaper ensured the downfall of the Independent papers after three decades in print, a senior executive has said.
  • Apple’s new Apple Music streaming division did not have to look too far for the subject of its first TV project. According the Hollywood Reporter, it is none other than Dr Dre, the music and film producer who made hundreds of millions when the technology giant purchased Beats headphones and streaming service Dre, started with Jimmy Iovine.

 

Business

rolls royce

  • The chief executive of Rolls-Royce has said the power systems engineering group is studying the implications of Britain voting to leave the European Union in a signal that leading businesses are increasingly concerned that Brexit is a real possibility.
  • Aldi’s latest promotional campaign has been called misleading and disingenuous after the supermarket claimed that it was more than 30% cheaper than its nearest rivals and launched ads targeting Morrisons.
  • The chair of Age UK has refused to apologise for offering elderly people a controversial energy tariff with power firm E.ON and described it as an “outstanding deal”.
  • Oil prices surged as much as 12% on Friday after new suggestions that Opec nations were set to cut oil production. The United Arab Emirates’ energy minister said that Opec members were ready to reduce output, the Wall Street Journal reported.
  • The founder of fashion chain Superdry has sold-off just under £50m worth of shares to fund his divorce. SuperGroup, the firm’s owner, confirmed Julian Dunkerton had completed the sale of four million shares at £12 per share. Mr Dunkerton, who founded the firm in 1985 from a market stall in Cheltenham, will still be the largest shareholder with a 27% stake in the group.
  • Pharmaceutical firm GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and some generics companies have been fined for being anti-competitive. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) says GSK made more than £50m of payments to companies making generic versions of its anti-depressant Seroxat to delay them coming to market.
  • Companies that fail to address pay differences between male and female employees will be highlighted in new league tables under plans announced on Friday. Those with more than 250 employees will be forced to reveal their pay gap. The regulations will affect about 8,000 employers across the UK.

Sports

serena-williams

  • Venus Williams beat Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan 7-5, 6-3 on Saturday to reach the final of the Taiwan Open. Williams, the No1 seed, who has yet to drop a set at the tournament, raced into a 4-1 lead in the first set only for her third-seeded opponent to claim four of the next five games to level at 5-5.
  • Major League Baseball (MLB) issued a lifetime ban on Friday to the former New York Mets pitcher Jenrry Mejía, after he tested positive a third time for a performance-enhancing substance. The lifetime suspension is the longest drug-related ban MLB has issued.
  • Matt Forte won’t be returning to the Chicago Bears for a ninth season. The two-time Pro Bowl running back announced on Instagram Friday morning that the team informed him this week it will not offer him a contract for next season. The Bears confirmed it, with general manager Ryan Pace calling him one of the “all-time great Bears.”
  • Kevin Mitchell has announced his retirement from boxing with immediate effect. The 31-year-old, who was due to fight Edis Tatli for the European title later this year, won the British and Commonwealth titles in 2008. He calls time on a career, which failed to yield a world title, but with a record of 39 victories from 44 fights.
  • Gary Neville ended his long wait for a first La Liga win as Valencia coach as late goals from Álvaro Negredo and Denis Cheryshev helped his side come from behind to beat Espanyol 2-1.
  • Pascal Wehrlein is set to race for Manor in Formula One this season. The 21-year-old German, whose mother is from Mauritius, became the youngest German Touring Car (DTM) champion in 2015 when he won the title with Mercedes.

 

Music

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  • The legendary Woodstock festival could be revived for a 50th anniversary concert, according to the original event’s co-creator.
  • Kanye West dropped his seventh album on Saturday night with, The Life of Pablo.
  • The Paris music venue in which 89 people were murdered by terrorists on 13 November 2015 is set to reopen. The owners of Le Bataclan have said they will “do our best to host events before the end of 2016”.
  • David Bowie’s son Duncan Jones has announced that he is to become a father, sending a heartfelt message to the late rock star. In a touching message about his father, who died of cancer a month ago, 44-year-old Jones tweeted the news. A hand-drawn cartoon of a baby with an umbilical cord protruding from its stomach and a speech bubble with the words “I’m waiting” accompanied the message.