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Banned but still in business: law fails to stop rogue landlords

Barred operators with housing convictions still renting out properties, Guardian and ITV investigation finds

Convicted landlords who have been ruled unfit to rent out their properties are continuing to operate by exploiting loopholes in the law that is supposed to protect the most vulnerable tenants.

The rogue owners are collecting rents – often funded by taxpayers via housing benefit – despite being convicted of housing offences and failing to pass the “fit and proper” person tests required by housing legislation in England and Wales, an investigation by the Guardian and ITV News has found.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 15:59:49 GMT
Government's rogue landlord list empty after six months

Database billed as key to protecting renters is empty, and is closed to public

The government’s new rogue landlord database was billed as a key tool for local councils to target the country’s worst landlords, but, more than six months after the system started, not a single name has been added – and even when some are added, the public will not be able to find out.

A freedom of information request filed by the Guardian and ITV News revealed that by the end of August the database was empty. When details of rogue landlords are eventually entered they will only be accessible to central and local government, unless the rules are changed.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 16:00:46 GMT
Jamal Khashoggi: Erdoğan rejects Saudi account of killing

Turkish president calls for ‘highest ranked’ of those responsible to face justice

The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has publicly torn down Saudi claims that the dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi died in a fight in its Istanbul consulate, making fresh allegations that his “savage” murder was premeditated and calling for an independent investigation in Turkey.

Erdoğan had billed his hotly anticipated address at the Turkish parliament in Ankara as the moment he would reveal the “naked truth” about what happened to Khashoggi. He said he was not satisfied with Riyadh’s suggestion that the killing was a rogue extradition operation gone wrong, and called for the “highest ranked” of those responsible to be brought to justice.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 14:14:32 GMT
No 10 denies cabinet row over Brexit backstop

Downing Street describes discussion at longer-than-usual meeting as ‘impassioned’

Cabinet members held “an impassioned” discussion about the importance of time-limiting any Brexit backstop arrangements agreed with the European Union as part of the divorce negotiations.

Related: Theresa May briefs cabinet on Brexit negotiations – politics live

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 12:42:54 GMT
Tech firms make millions from Trump's anti-immigrant agenda, report finds

Amazon, Palantir and Microsoft provide tools that aid surveillance, detention and deportation, according to report

Silicon Valley technology corporations including Amazon, Palantir and Microsoft make millions from US immigration enforcement, according to a new report.

They provide tools that aid surveillance, detention and deportation of individuals targeted by Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda, according to a paper published Tuesday by a coalition of immigrant rights groups. The report outlined ways Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) has expanded its reach, with infrastructure from tech companies that have faced growing internal and external pressure to cancel their contracts.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 13:30:16 GMT
5,000 people, two tonnes of blood: artwork shines light on refugee crisis

Marc Quinn hopes world’s ‘first migrating artwork’ will raise $30m for charities

For Aghiad Malik, a refugee from Syria, blood had only ever symbolised one thing: death. “It was a nightmare, seeing red on the streets,” he says. “Even to think about blood was horrific.”

But soon it will have another meaning. He is one of around 5,000 people whose blood will be used to create Odyssey, a new work by British artist Marc Quinn that will be displayed outside the New York Public Library from next September . The not-for-profit work intends to shine a spotlight on the refugee crisis while raising $30m for charities working to alleviate it.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 16:04:16 GMT
Man in Ryanair racism incident identified, police say

Essex police have passed man’s details to Spanish authorities who are investigating

Police say they have identified a man filmed racially abusing an elderly woman on a Ryanair flight.

The woman, Delsie Gayle, 77, said she had been left stunned and depressed after a man shouted at her to move seats as they boarded a plane last Friday.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 16:07:09 GMT
EU and Italy face off over populist government's budget

Brussels’ unprecedented rejection of spending plan brushed off by deputy PM Matteo Salvini

The European commission is at loggerheads with Rome after taking the unprecedented step of rejecting the Italian government’s draft budget in a move designed to force the country’s populist government to rein in its spending.

Italy was presented with a three-week deadline to provide a revised financial plan, and the commission’s vice-president Valdis Dombrovskis noted that Italy already spent more servicing debt than it did on education.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 16:00:39 GMT
Disadvantaged children do better at school if in a minority, finds report

OECD study advises not clustering poor children would improve social mobility

Disadvantaged pupils do much better in schools where they are in a minority, research by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has found.

The OECD report suggests the government could boost social mobility by breaking up clusters of pupils between schools and persuading talented teachers to work in impoverished areas.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 15:59:51 GMT
Man thought to be journalist missing in Syria released, says Japan

Minister says man now in Turkey is probably Jumpei Yasuda, missing since 2015

A Japanese freelance journalist who went missing three years ago in Syria is believed to have been released by his captors, Japan’s government has said.

The chief cabinet secretary, Yoshihide Suga, said Japan had been informed by Qatar that a man believed to be Jumpei Yasuda had been freed and was now in Turkey.

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Tue, 23 Oct 2018 15:36:46 GMT

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