Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Saturday 28 Dec 2013

The Week’s super-quick catch-up on the main news talking points, available from 8am daily

1. THOUSANDS STILL WITHOUT POWER
More than 6,000 homes In England and Wales are still without power, three days after storms struck on Christmas Eve. Kent, Sussex and Surrey have been worst affected, mostly in the most rural parts of the counties. Rail services were disrupted by a landslip near East Grinstead.
2. PROTESTERS SET FIRE TO CAIRO CAMPUS
A man has been shot dead by police as supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood set fire to university buildings in Cairo, according to Egyptian state TV. The Brotherhood, which was banned on Wednesday as a terrorist organisation, has denied that it was behind the blaze.
3. WEB SHOPPERS SPEND £590m ON 'BUSIEST DAY'
Armchair shoppers spent a record £590m yesterday, 20 per cent more than on the same day last year. Bad weather is thought to have boosted online sales and discouraged shoppers from travelling to physical stores. Overall spending of £2.2bn was down on the predicted figure of £2.97bn.
4. NSA SURVEILLANCE RULED LEGAL
An American court has rules that security agencies did not violate the US constitution by collecting vast swathes of telephone data. A judge described the system of data collection as controversial and "almost Orwellian" but said the al Qaeda's tactics had necessitated such a response.
5. AMERICAN TROOPS RELEASED BY LIBYA
Four US military personnel have been released after being held by the Libyan government for a short period. Unconfirmed reports suggest that shots were fires during an altercation at a checkpoint, after which the Americans were taken into custody. No one was injured during the incident.
6. SOUTH SUDAN: GOVT AGREES CEASEFIRE
Leaders of eight East African nations meeting in Kenya for emergency talks about growing violence in South Sudan have said that the government has agreed to an "immediate cessation of hostilities".Ethnic violence in the country has resulted in at least 1,000 deaths in 12 days. UN peacekeeping reinforcements are on their way.
7. THREE BRITONS HURT IN TENERIFE EXPLOSION
An explosion at a poolside bar in Tenerife has injured three British people staying on the island. One woman received severe burns to her face and is being treated in hospital. Local media reports suggest that the blast was caused by a beer canister.
8. UK GOVERNMENT BLOCKS 'RIGHT TO MARRY'
Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary, has described as absurd an attempt by the EU to introduce a "right to marry" into UK law, arguing that member states should be free to set their own priorities. A spokesman for the European Commission said that changes to fundamental rights could only be made if the UK signed up to them.
9. OBAMA SIGNS BUDGET BILL FOR TWO YEARS
Barack Obama has signed a bipartisan bill setting the federal budget for two years, averting the risk of a US government shutdown in January. The bill does not settle the equally fraught question of raising the government debt ceiling, however. Obama signed the bill, and seven others, on holiday with his family in Hawaii.
10. HOT TICKET: RON BURGUNDY RETURNS
Will Ferrell's comedy sequel Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, opens in UK cinemas today. Ferrell’s pompous, self-satisfied newsreader, Ron Burgundy, leaves 1970s San Diego behind for a 24-hour news channel in 1980s New York. With Christina Applegate, Steve Carell and Paul Rudd. "Howlingly funny," says The Times.