Sunday Morning Briefing and News Paper Review
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Good morning,

Your morning briefing gives you a roundup of the main headlines from the world and the main stories reported in today’s front pages of Malta’s newspapers.

Latest Headlines 

Left-wing Italian terrorist Cesare Battisti, who was on the run from Brazilian authorities, has been captured in Bolivia, an adviser to President Jair Bolsonaro said Friday. Battisti, a founding member of far-left Italian radical group Armed Proletarians for Communism, was convicted in absentia in 1993 of four political killings committed in the 1970s and sentenced to life in prison. The 63-year-old has maintained his innocence. – Italian Media 

A powerful explosion and fire apparently caused by a gas leak at a Paris bakery Saturday killed two firefighters and a Spanish national and injured 46 others, according to French and Spanish authorities.

Poland’s internal affairs minister, Joachim Brudziński, called for the European Union and Nato to work on a joint position over whether to exclude Huawei from their markets following the arrest of the Chinese employee, Wang Weijing, and a former Polish security official on Friday. The two men have heard the charges and could be held for three months. Huawei, the world’s biggest producer of telecommunications equipment, is facing intense scrutiny in the west over its relationship with China’s government. The Guardian

A partial government shutdown in the United States over President Donald Trump’s demand for $5.7bn to build a wall along the US-Mexico border has entered a record 22nd day. Trump, holed up in the White House with Congress adjourned for the weekend, warned of a much lengthier impasse and blamed the Democrats, as Saturday marked the longest shuttering of federal agencies in the US history. – Al Jazeera

Julian Castro, the telegenic former mayor of San Antonio, Texas and Obama-era cabinet member, launched his bid to become the nation’s first Hispanic president Saturday. – France 24 

British Tory party politician David Davis, 70, served as the newly created secretary of state for exiting the European Union from 2016 to 2018. In an interview, former British cabinet minister David Davis says he believes the Brexit deal between the EU and Britain will ultimately fail. The politician also expresses doubts about the predicted chaos that could spark. – Der Spiegel

Martin Fayulu, the opposition candidate who was declared the runner-up in last month’s DR Congo’s presidential election, appealed Saturday to the country’s Constitutional Court to annul the provisional result announced by the election commission. France 24

Leaving the European Union without a deal is the only way Britain can fully take back control of its borders, a former Tory leader has claimed. Brexiteer Iain Duncan Smith said the UK would be able to start enjoying the benefits of Brexit from March 29 under a no-deal exit, rather than being left in “Brexit in Name Only purgatory” under the Prime Minister’s deal. – British Media

Since arriving in Berlin as U.S. ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell has flouted diplomatic conventions and attempted to interfere in domestic politics. He has since become politically isolated in the German capital. – Der Spiegel 

 

The News Paper Review 

The Sunday Times says that the PN treasurer had warned the party leader that finances would run dry by February. Contacted by the paper, a spokesperson said that the leaked email was sent in summer and the party’s finances has improved significantly since then.

It-Torċa, too, follows the story and says that party structures are taking ‘drastic measures’ to address the financial situation. The paper says that the party treasurer said that more party clubs need to be sold.

MaltaToday leads with details about the deal between the government and the Corinthia Group over transfer and use of land in St George’s Bay. The paper says that the company will be allowed to transfer the concession to third parties and to renegotiate the €52 million fee in case of economic hardships.

The Sunday Times reveals that the government is giving the Corinthia Group unlimited claim over the seabed around the St George’s Bay peninsula. The paper says that an unpublished draft deed allows the company to build on the surrounding seabed.

The Malta Independent speaks to an unnamed retired senior PN politician who says that the party should not seek to appoint a new leader at this point, but urges Arian Delia to convene the parliamentary group as soon as possible.

MaltaToday covers an interview with PN Leader Adrian Delia on Radio Malta on Saturday where he said that it would be unacceptable to have a party leader convicted of domestic violence. Delia denied all allegations of violence and financial wrongdoing, calling such claims as no more than lies.

Il-Mument reports on the interview too and quotes the PN Leader who said that he became a politician to change the country and the party, and to ultimately improve the lives of people.

The Malta Independent says that the government is unwilling to use the veto to force a solution among EU members regarding the migration issue. Sources told the paper that the government prefers diplomacy at this stage.

Another story in The Sunday Times quotes PN MP Simon Busuttil who said that he has been approached by many people and organisations encouraging him to seek other avenues to pursue the Panama Papers inquiry, after the Court of Appeals overruled a decision by the courts to open an investigation.

Illum runs a series of reports related to the Nationalist Party. It says that party leader Adrian Delia is avoid the parliamentary group because he does not enjoy the support of the majority of MPs. The paper also says that boxes of Occupy Justice branded t-shirts were found in the stores of the PN headquarters.

In other stories, It-Torċa says that GWU remains the union with the best understanding of the engineering section at the Malta Freeport, despite attempts by UĦM to claim representation. The paper also reports that Malta ranks among the top 30 countries in the world when it comes to innovation.

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