While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Feb 5


Angela Merkel, Shinzo Abe seek to avoid chaos from no-deal Brexit

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said they want to head off a no-deal Brexit that could rattle their economies, as both braced against the UK’s increasingly chaotic course towards an exit from the EU.

Abe and Merkel, both 64, are two of the most outspoken defenders of the international order being shaken by Brexit and the US-China trade war, as well as President Donald Trump’s questioning of decades-old alliances.

Their summit in Tokyo on Monday (Feb 4) came days after a Japan-European Union trade agreement came into effect, removing almost all tariffs.

“I conveyed to Chancellor Merkel our strong expectations that a no-deal Brexit will be avoided,” Abe told reporters after the talks. “Japan wants the effect on Japanese companies, and on the economy, to be kept to a minimum.”


British interior minister orders extradition of Indian tycoon

Tycoon Vijay Mallya promised to appeal Britain’s decision to order his extradition to India to face fraud charges.

The case of the 63-year-old owner of Kingfisher beer, who also heads the Force India Formula One racing team, is the most high-profile of several extradition cases between Britain and India.

Mallya left India in 2016 owing more than US$1 billion (S$1.3 billion) after defaulting on loan payments to a state-owned bank and allegedly misusing the funds.


Self-shredding Banksy painting goes on display in Germany

"Love is in the Bin", the work by graffiti artist Banksy that shredded itself live after it was sold at auction last year, went on display at a German museum - after officials had made sure its shredding mechanism was no longer working.

The painting was originally auctioned as "Girl with Balloon", the image of a young girl holding a heart-shaped red balloon that has become the artist's most popular since it was first sprayed on to London's Waterloo Bridge in 2002.

But the moment the auctioneer's gavel fell, a hidden mechanism inside the frame shredded half the painting, which had just been sold for over a million pounds.


Liam Neeson reveals hunting for a black man to kill in retaliation for friend's rape

Veteran actor Liam Neeson revealed that he once walked the streets hunting for a "black b*****d" to kill in retaliation for the rape of a friend.

The 66-year-old Northern Irish star of Schindler's List and Taken is promoting his appearance in the Hollywood action thriller Cold Pursuit.

But his interview with Britain's The Independent took an unexpected turn when he admitted to once wanting to find a black man - any black man willing to pick a fight - to murder on the spot.


Football: Mourinho humiliated by fall at Russian hockey league face-off

Former Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho embarrassingly slipped after presenting a symbolic face-off to a match in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League (KHL).

Videos of the 56-year-old boss falling on a red carpet on the ice rink in Balashikha appeared on social media after the accident.

Mourinho was invited by KHL side Avangard Omsk in Siberia to take part in promotional work for the club and signed photographs ahead of the match with SKA Saint Petersburg.