Worst floods for 70 years swamp northern England

Around 500 soldiers brought in to deal with ‘unprecedented’ flooding in Yorkshire and Lancashire.
Ap_965019862354It’s been a soggy weekend in northern England as widespread flooding caused by heavy rains prompted the evacuation of thousands of homes.


The UK’s Environment Agency (EA) has put 27 severe flood warnings in place, along with 90 warnings and 84 alerts, as the country continues to experience unprecedented flooding across northern England. The “severe” warning means there is a danger to life.

Paris attacker buried in unmarked grave

One of the Islamist militants who attacked the Bataclan concert hall in Paris on 13 November was buried on Christmas Eve in an unmarked grave, reports say.

Million migrants enter Europe in 2015

Eleven new deaths are reported at sea off Turkey as the number of migrants and refugees crossing into Europe this year passes one million.

Refugees bring new life to Greek businesses

Tourist flow dries up amid crisis but refugees provide alternate source of income for vendors on Mediterranean islands.

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has criticised Germany’s role in Europe as too dominant. “Europe has to serve all 28 countries, not just one,” he said to the Financial Times on Monday. Renzi has taken up the fight against Germany’s anachronistic austerity policy, some commentators write approvingly. Others dismiss his criticism as a cheap way of gaining votes.

Fifa’s Ethics Committee banned the organisation’s president Sepp Blatter and Uefa boss Michel Platini from football-related activities on Monday over a payment Platini received from Blatter in 2011. Some commentators believe that with Platini’s fall football is losing a role model and an acceptable potential Fifa boss. Others see the decision as a chance for the global football association to move on.

Spain’s two biggest left-wing parties ruled out supporting a government led by the ruling People’s Party (PP) on Monday, complicating Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s efforts to build a coalition to stay in power after a tight general election.

Podemos: the schizophrenic road from public squares to the institutions

If they are not going to win anyway, as seems to be the case, would it not have been better to compromise less and work toward a more profound political change as an opposition? Español.

Since its birth in early 2014, Podemos experienced a dramatic rise in the polls during its first year followed by a significant nose dive throughout 2015. This roller coaster ride—which now seems to be climbing back up again—is due to several possible reasons. The truth probably lies in a combination of factors.

Podemos: radical blueprint for democratic reform

Iglesias’ party proposes a radical opening up of the state through citizen participation in decision-making, and administration as a weapon against oligarchic power.

Carolina Bescansa, Pablo Iglesias, Ada Colau at Caja MagicaCarolina Bescansa, Pablo Iglesias, Ada Colau at Caja Magica, Madrid. December 13, 2015. Demotix/Jorge Gonzalez. All rigths reserved.Arguably the flagship policy of Podemos in this election campaign is not the proposal for a guaranteed basic income of 600 euros, nor is it the progressive raising of the minimum wage to 800 euros, but the introduction of a recall referendum, in the case of a breaching of the electoral contract.

France and radical Islam: overcoming failed containment

The way to address the disaffection of young French Muslims lies in opening the political system to their democratic criticism and voices.

Muslims rally against France's ban on public prayer in front of French Embassy, London. 23 September, 2011.Muslims rally against France’s ban on public prayer in front of French Embassy, London. 23 September, 2011. Demotix/Reporter #20299. All rights reserved.Around six weeks after the terrorist attacks in Paris on 13 November, France seems more confused than ever on how to contain the fascination that some of its young Muslims have for groups such as ISIS.

Jeremy Corbyn’s first 100 days revisited

The leader of Britain’s Labour Party continues to inspire his supporters and confound his critics. Is he behind the times, or ahead of them?

Corbyn welcomes Jim McMahon to Parliament. Mark Kerrison/Demotix. All rights reserved.Corbyn welcomes Jim McMahon to Parliament. Mark Kerrison/Demotix. All rights reserved.In mid-August 2015, and in a departure from the norm, one of these columns speculated on Jeremy Corbyn’s first hundred days as leader of the Labour Party, three weeks before he had even won the election (see “Jeremy Corbyn’s first 100 days“, 19 August 2015). It was a bit of fantasy at the time but now that he has just about completed those first hundred days, just how does it look?

Though the number of refugees arriving in Sweden has dropped by 60% since tougher asylum policies were adopted in November, the far-right Sweden Democrats are receiving unpecedented levels of support, according to a new poll.

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