Sunday, May 26

UK

TikTok Spied on British Journalist Through Her Pet Account to Find Whistleblower
China, News, UK

TikTok Spied on British Journalist Through Her Pet Account to Find Whistleblower

Bytedance, the Chinese company behind the hugely popular app TikTok, has admitted that four employees accessed the private data of a British journalist's cat from a TikTok account. They did that to track down some TikTok employees who spoke to the press. The journalist says she is shocked. Just before Christmas, Cristina Criddle, a British journalist who writes for The Financial Times, suddenly received a call from someone from TikTok. The account dedicated to her cat Buffy has been closely monitored since the summer by two American and two Chinese employees of Bytedance, the Chinese company behind the widespread video app. Criddle shared the story with Britain's public broadcaster BBC this weekend. As a technology reporter for The Financial Times, Criddle has often written crit...
British Minister is Heavily Criticized for Insensitive Attitude During a Visit to Rwanda
News, UK

British Minister is Heavily Criticized for Insensitive Attitude During a Visit to Rwanda

British Home Secretary Suella Braverman has come under heavy fire on social media for being insensitive, according to critics, during a visit to potential housing in Rwanda, which would house asylum seekers from the United Kingdom. The British government has long been planning far-reaching plans to halt illegal migration to the United Kingdom across the Channel. In April last year, under Braverman's predecessor Priti Patel, an agreement was negotiated with Rwanda to fly migrants who had illegally entered the United Kingdom to the East African country and house them there. However, this provoked enormous protests at home and abroad, resulting in various lawsuits, as a result of which the agreement was suspended pending the judgment on the merits. Braverman visited the country on ...
Economists: Brexit Will Cost the British Economy £100 Billion a Year
Business, Europe, News, UK

Economists: Brexit Will Cost the British Economy £100 Billion a Year

Brexit will cost the British economy about £100 billion annually, economists from data and news agency Bloomberg have calculated. Converted, that is almost 114 billion euros. According to the experts, the departure of the British from the European Union will be felt in several ways. For example, investments are under pressure, and British companies are struggling with a major shortage of workers. As a result, the British economy would now be 4 percent smaller than it would have been without Brexit. Economists Ana Andrade and Dan Hanson ask in a new Bloomberg Economics report whether the UK has harmed itself by turning its back on Brussels. "Evidence so far still suggests it does," they write. "The main takeaway is that the break with the single market may have hit the UK economy...
King Charles III Doesn’t Want Prince Harry and Prince Andrew to Stand in for Him
News, UK

King Charles III Doesn’t Want Prince Harry and Prince Andrew to Stand in for Him

Britain's King Charles III is preparing to amend British law to prevent Prince Harry and Prince Andrew, on the sidelines of the royal family, from standing in for him when he is ill or staying abroad. Local media reported this on Thursday. The Telegraph expects the change "in the coming weeks." Buckingham Palace has not yet responded. Under a 1937 law, for specific duties, such as signing official documents, the monarch can be replaced in his absence by his wife and by the first four adults in the order of succession to the throne. In the case of King Charles III, therefore, it concerns Queen Consort Camilla, followed by his sons William and Harry, his brother Andrew and his niece Beatrice. But Prince Harry has renounced his royal duties and moved to the United States with hi...
Ministry Confirms Postponement of United Kingdom Budget Plan
Business, News, UK

Ministry Confirms Postponement of United Kingdom Budget Plan

The United Kingdom's new budget plans are taking longer than previously announced. The British Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, confirmed this after another minister had already hinted at the BBC. This is because the government of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who took office on Tuesday, needs more time to include the "most accurate economic estimates possible" in its budget plans. A statement on the budget plans should have come out next Monday. But the publication has now been postponed to November 17. The government also promises that the verdict of a British audit office, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), will be announced immediately that day. Sunak and Hunt will explain in November how they want to reduce government debt and restore financial stability,...
UK Energy Regulator Warns of Severe Gas Shortages This Winter
News, UK

UK Energy Regulator Warns of Severe Gas Shortages This Winter

British energy regulator Ofgem has issued a warning that serious gas shortages could develop this winter. The announcement, which could be viewed by the newspaper The Times, refers to "emergency measures" to ensure gas supplies and to continue to supply households with gas and electricity. To achieve this, the largest industrial consumers would first be asked to stop using gas in the event of problems temporarily. Earlier in the day, the International Energy Agency had also stressed in a report that savings on gas consumption this winter will be crucial in the European Union to prevent the storage depots from becoming empty and shortages could occur. The agency says that to keep gas stores sufficiently stocked until the end of the heating season, gas consumption must be reduc...
British Energy Aid Will Cost Treasury £60 Billion in the Near Future
Business, News, UK

British Energy Aid Will Cost Treasury £60 Billion in the Near Future

Over the next six months, the United Kingdom will lose around £60 billion in subsidies for gas and electricity bills for households and businesses. But, that said, the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, Kwasi Kwarteng. Taxes are also being lowered to boost the economy. He emphasized in parliament that the cost estimates of the energy plans are "particularly uncertain" given the strongly fluctuating energy prices. "Based on current prices, the total price of the energy package for 6 months from October is predictable to be around £60 billion," he said. However, Kwarteng expects costs to fall as negotiations on new long-term energy contracts with suppliers progress. Prime Minister Liz Truss previously announced a two-year freeze on energy prices. With this step, she wants to ...
British Government Thinks of Blackouts in Winter Due to Gas Shortage
News, UK

British Government Thinks of Blackouts in Winter Due to Gas Shortage

The British government is considering emergency scenarios in which electricity and/or gas are temporarily cut off at companies in the middle of winter, but possibly also at households. The Bloomberg news agency reports from relevant sources that the "reasonably plausible worst-case scenario" plan foresees severe shortages for at least four days in January. That would necessitate blackouts on those days. The scenario assumes a colder winter than the country is used to and a reduced import of gas due to a policy of exporters, such as Norway, to first replenish their own stocks before selling gas abroad. The UK Department for Trade, Energy, and Industrial Strategy has not yet commented on the story. The authorities are grappling with the pressing question of how expensive energy...
MEPs Celebrate Johnson’s Departure
News, UK

MEPs Celebrate Johnson’s Departure

The news that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is stepping down has been welcomed in the European Parliament with relief and joy. Johnson has thoroughly ruined the relationship between Brussels and London, many say.   "Finally," says the German trade specialist and chairman of the working group in which MEPs consult with the United Kingdom. "Johnson was only concerned with staying in power and his own ego," says Bernd Lange. The Social Democrat points to the collision course that London chose to get rid of the tight Brexit agreements on the Northern Ireland border. "Now the theatrical British fireworks must stop. We need a fresh start in EU-UK relations." It was high time Johnson resigned, says Greens colleague Anna Cavazzini. He was "a disaster" for relations between London an...
British Government Presents Law to Circumvent Human Rights Court
News, UK

British Government Presents Law to Circumvent Human Rights Court

The British government is presenting a bill that will allow the country to disregard the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab calls it the 'law for rights', which states, among other things, that the highest court on human rights is the British Supreme Court and not the European court in Strasbourg.   He denies that the country will withdraw from the European court, but if the legislation comes into force, it will no longer be the highest body. Raab takes action after the European court raised legal obstacles to the government's plan to fly illegal migrants to Rwanda. An agreement has been concluded with the African country for this. However, the forced evictions have led to lawsuits and the human rights court in Strasbourg blocked the...