Brexit has made Britain’s problems worse, says Juncker

EU commission chief calls UKs departure a cycle of promises, promises not kept, and lies Brexit has worsened Britains problems, the outgoing head of the European commission has said in another parting shot at the UK government. Jean-Claude Juncker, who is standing down as head of the EU executive, delivered a typically blunt assessment in an interview with Germanys public broadcaster, ARD. Britain also has problems other than Brexit and these problems have got bigger with Brexit. They are trying to cover that up, but they just got bigger, he said. Juncker also described the UKs departure from the EU as a perpetual cycle of promises, promises not kept, and lies repeated over and over again, two days after he …

‘I’ve been shafted twice’: Stasi victims and their quest for compensation

Systematic degradation by state police resulting in lost careers and poor mental health has been hard to prove for many seeking recompense On a summers day in 1962, a year after the building of Stasi archives documents in which the German Democratic Republics secret police instructed five unofficial collaborators to target her in bars and nightclubs: It is well known, the file said, that Herrmann likes to dance and is happy for her dance partners to invite her to the bar afterwards. As Germany gears up to celebrate 30 years since the end of the Iron Curtain this Saturday, Herrmann is one of thousands of victims of the GDRs regime who have, until now, been denied access to support schemes …

French couple can keep tilde in son’s name after court battle

The row over Fach or Fanch was settled after the parents two-year tussle with officials A two-year French legal battle over an orthographic squiggle has ended in victory for a couple granted the right to write their infant sons Breton first name as Fach instead of Fanch. The countrys highest court for criminal and civil cases threw out an appeal bid by the authorities of Rennes, the capital of the north-western Brittany region, must be written without the symbol on his birth certificate. That court ruled that the symbol was unrecognised by the French language, and said authorising the use of the tilde would amount to a breach of the will of our state of law to maintain the unity …

Brussels repels Boris Johnson’s quest for new Brexit deal

Juncker said to have told new PM current agreement is the best and only one possible Brussels has roundly rebuffed Boris Johnson after he laid down tough conditions for the new Brexit deal he hopes to strike over the summer. Speaking to the House of Commons for the first time as prime minister on Thursday, Johnson reiterated his campaign pledge of ditching the Irish backstop and promised to ramp up preparations for a no-deal Brexit immediately. I would prefer us to leave the EU with a deal, he said. I would much prefer it. I believe that it is possible even at this late stage, and I will work flat-out to make it happen. But certain things need to be …

On a growth tear, work trip SaaS TravelPerk adds $60M to its Series C

Business travel SaaS startup, TravelPerk, has announced it’s more than doubled the $44M Series C round we wrote about just nine months ago — taking in a further $60M from its existing investors, which brings the round to $104M, and the business’ total raised to date to $134M. Investors increasing the size of their Series C commitment are Kinnevik, partners of DST Global, Target Global, Felix Capital, Sunstone, and LocalGlobe. A mere three years ago the 2015-founded, Barcelona-based startup had bagged a $7M Series A — with a pitch to take the pain out of business travel booking. Since then it’s been on a major growth tear. Co-founder and CEO Avi Meir says this momentum is behind the Series C …

Iran refuses to end breach of nuclear deal until it gets ‘full rights’

Tehran meets French envoy as Rouhani warns UK of repercussions over oil tanker seizure Iran has told Europe it will not reverse its decision to increase uranium enrichment beyond the limits set by the seizure of an oil tanker bound for Syria off the coast of Gibraltar last week. The ship remains in British possession. Shamkhanis warning suggests the three European powers France, Germany and the UK face an uphill struggle to keep the nuclear deal alive. Shamkhani said the Iranian strategy was unchangeable, and claimed European countries had shown a lack of will to keep their side of the bargain. The two-day visit by the French envoy to Tehran, Emmanuel Bonne, was seen as probably the last attempt to …

May averts Tory mutiny by agreeing to set her exit date after Brexit bill vote

1922 Committee agrees to let PM wait until after vote on withdrawal agreement bill in early June Theresa May has agreed to set a timetable for her departure as prime minister in the first week of June, leading MPs to believe she will trigger a leadership contest before the summer. Sir Graham Brady, the chair of the 1922 Committee of backbenchers, said she would agree a timetable for the election of a new leader after her Brexit legislation returned to parliament saying he would of course go for it when there is a vacancy but there is a wide field of up to 20 candidates. May met the 1922 committees executive on Thursday, which represents Tory backbenchers, after mutinous MPs …