While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Nov 6 edition

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker has warned European companies not to cut special deals with Britain ahead of formal Brexit negotiations. PHOTO: REUTERS

Juncker warns European industry not to cut own Brexit deals

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker warned European firms he would block attempts to cut special deals with Britain ahead of formal Brexit negotiations.

In an interview published on Saturday, Juncker said he had heard industrialists' concerns in a meeting with French President Francois Holland and German Chancellor Angela Merkel but told them not to interfere in the negotiations.

"I take issue with the attempts in some countries, especially in industrial circles, to reach an agreement with the British for their sector before the other 27 (member states) have spoken," Juncker told Belgian newspaper Le Soir.


Ten bodies found in dinghy off Libyan coast

Ten bodies were recovered on Saturday from a rubber dinghy off the Libyan coast, the Italian coastguard said, adding that 2,100 other migrants had been rescued during the day.

Fifteen rescue operations were conducted on Saturday - almost twice as many as on Friday when 1,200 people were rescued.

An AFP correspondent aboard the Topaz Responder, a search and rescue ship chartered by Maltese NGO MOAS and the Italian Red Cross, saw several hundred people, including children, being rescued on Friday and Saturday.


UK justice minister speaks out on Brexit judiciary row

British Justice Minister Liz Truss offered her belated support for the independence of the judiciary on Saturday after the High Court faced a string of political attacks over its controversial ruling on Brexit.

Truss had been criticised for staying silent over the backlash against Thursday's landmark judgment that the government cannot start the process of leaving the European Union without parliament's approval.

One newspaper denounced the three judges as "enemies of the people" while members of Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservative party accused them of "judicial activism" and of seeking to undermine the June referendum vote for Brexit.


Moscow warns of possible attacks by Russian militants on return home from Syria

Thousands of Russians have been fighting in Syria in anti-government ranks, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in an interview published on Saturday, issuing a warning of possible attacks by them on their return home.

Last year, Moscow launched an air campaign to hit the targets of militants who have waged a war against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. There are also numerous militants from Russia who filled the ranks of anti-government forces.

"You probably know that thousands of Russian citizens and individuals from other post-Soviet republics are fighting in Syria," Medvedev told Channel 2 Israel ahead of a visit to Israel next week, according to the interview transcript.


Anti-government protesters clash with police in Florence

Hundreds of hooded anti-government protesters clashed with police in Florence on Saturday just weeks before a referendum on a constitutional reform on which Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has staked his political future.

There have been protests against the Renzi government and the referendum before, but these were the first involving violence.

The young protesters were marching through the centre of Florence trying to reach the premises where 41-year-old Renzi, also a former mayor of the Tuscan city, was expected to attend his Democratic Party's annual convention called "Leopolda".


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