Top Stories: Week Beginning 28th January


Theresa May discusses a ‘Plan B’ to Brexit   

After Theresa May failed to pass her withdrawal agreement on January 15th, she proposed a ‘Plan B’ to parliament, with the only change being the removal of a £65 application fee for EU citizens wishing to confirm their residency in the UK. Many MPs claim that the deal was no different from the one recently rejected. Meanwhile, the House of Commons Andrea Leadsom is confident that the EU would grant the UK an “extra couple of weeks” to finalise a deal.

Change of power in Venezuela

Venezuela’s president of the national assembly, Juan Guaidó, declared himself the acting president at a demonstration in Caracas. The demonstrations protested against the socialist regime led by Nicolás Maduro, who won a heavily rigged election last year to serve a second six-year term. The United States has recognised Guaidó as the interim leader. However, Maduro still holds power of the military, meaning that for the time Venezuela has two leaders.

End of US government shutdown

President Donald Trump has claimed to have reached a deal which would end the five-week shutdown of the American government, the longest government shutdown in US history. The deal will fund the government until February 15th, during which time the hundreds of thousands of federal workers who have been working without pay will receive full pay-back. Trump praised the American people, calling those who have suffered from the shutdown “incredible patriots”.

India launches the lightest ever satellite into orbit

The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) launched a student-designed satellite which they claim to be the lightest satellite ever to be put into orbit. The satellite, Kalamsat-V2, weighs only 1.26kg. They aim to help amateur radio operators and inspire younger generations to join the scientific field. ISRO aims to launch its first manned space mission by 2022.

James Bulger film to remain in Academy Awards

The 91st Academy Awards nominations were announced on the 22nd of January. Some controversy has occurred due to the nomination of the short film based on the murder of the two-year-old James Bulger. James Bulger’s mother pleaded for the film to be removed from the nominations after being left “distraught”. The director, Vincent Lambe, refused to withdraw his work.