Welcome to our “Things You Need To Know” daily update. Every day we’ll be here for you, summarising the key talking points in as quick of a time as possible.
1. Trump Takes Action On Syria
President Trump has taken action against Syria, bombing an air base said to be responsible for this week’s chemical attack on civilians in the Idlib province.
This is the first US action against Assad. It puts Trump at odds with Russia, with Vladimir Putin being Assad’s key ally.
Trump said the bombing is in the “vital national security interest” of the US. He said “Years of previous attempts at changing Assad’s behaviour have all failed and failed very dramatically.
“As a result the refugee crisis continues to deepen and the region continues to destabilise, threatening the US and its allies.
“Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad launched a horrible chemical weapons attack on innocent civilians. Using a deadly nerve agent, Assad choked out the lives of helpless men, women and children.
“It was a slow and brutal death for so many. Even beautiful babies were cruelly murdered in this very barbaric attack. No child of God should ever suffer such horror.”
What do you think of Trump’s move? Vote in our Twitter poll.
2. Brexit Talks Off To A Good Start
European Council President Donald Tusk has said Brexit talks are getting “off to a good start.”
He was at Downing Street yesterday, meeting with Theresa May to discuss the start of the Brexit process. The two have agreed to maintain regular contact throughout the two year negotiations.
3. Blow To Nicola Sturgeon’s Indyref2
Scotland’s economy shrank 0.2% in the final quarter of 2016, while the UK as a whole grew 0.7%.
The SNP blamed the poor GDP numbers on Brexit, however, the UK as a whole went up. As a result, the data could be a blow to Nicola Sturgeon’s hopes of convincing Scotland that another independence referendum would be good.
4. Pepsi Advert Pulled
Following the controversy over Pepsi’s Kendall Jenner advert, the company has acted to remove the entire campaign.
The ad showed Jenner as part of a protest, which is then resolved after she gives a police officer a can of Pepsi. The ad went viral due to so much criticism over its trivialization of protest and police matters.
Pepsi said “Clearly we missed the mark, and we apologize. We did not intend to make light of any serious issue. We are removing the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologize for putting Kendall Jenner in this position.”
5. Supreme Court Ruling On School Absences
The Supreme Court has ruled that a father was unlawful when he took his child out of school to go to DisneyWorld.
The case could have implications for parents who take their children on holiday in school time without permission from headteachers.
Lady Hale, deputy president of the Supreme Court, said “Unauthorised absences have a disruptive effect; not only on the individual child but also on the work of other pupils. If one pupil can be taken out, whenever it suits the parent, so can others.”