November 15, 2018 / 1:37 PM / a month ago

Thursday Morning Briefing

Troops search for people still missing in California wildfire as death toll climbs, deadly crossing ends migrant’s American dream and UK prime minister battles to save Brexit deal as ministers quit. Catch up on the latest headlines. 

Highlights

National Guard troops scoured the ruins of the town of Paradise for any sign of 130 people still missing in California’s deadliest wildfire on record as authorities said the death toll had risen to 56.

In September, Guatemalan migrant Misael Paiz tried to make his way through one of the deadliest border crossings in the Arizona desert. After several hours of walking, he collapsed next to a dirt track called Cemetery Road. Reuters was with the Border Patrol agents when they found his body.

A Republican U.S. representative of Utah who is trailing her Democratic challenger filed a lawsuit seeking to halt vote counting while two incumbent Republican congressmen in California and New Jersey conceded, more than a week after the U.S. midterm elections.

Commentary

Even if Special Counsel Robert Mueller is allowed to complete his investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Kremlin in 2016, the likelihood of anything he finds making a dramatic change to the political environment or leading to Donald Trump’s removal from office is slim, writes Lincoln Mitchell, a political science teacher at Columbia University.

Brexit

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May, prepares to make a statement outside 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain November 14, 2018. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

Prime Minister Theresa May battled to save a draft divorce deal with the European Union after her Brexit secretary and other ministers quit in protest at an agreement they say will trap Britain in the bloc’s orbit for years. Their resignations have also put her position as leader of the Conservative Party - and consequently her premiership - under threat. The prime minister has suffered 18 resignations from her government since last November, ten of which have been related to her approach to Brexit.

The British currency plunged and is set for its second biggest drop this year as opposition mounted at Theresa May’s draft deal for leaving the European Union with a series of resignations. The dollar jumped and traders bought into the safe-haven yen after the Brexit deal was plunged into uncertainty, spooking investors across currency markets.

World

FILE PHOTO: A demonstrator holds a poster with a picture of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi outside the Saudi Arabia consulate in Istanbul, Turkey October 25, 2018. REUTERS/Osman Orsal

Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor is seeking the death penalty for five out of 11 suspects charged in the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, in a case that has strained the kingdom’s ties with key Western allies, his office said.

Exclusive: The Trump administration plans to set up a side-event promoting fossil fuels at the annual U.N. climate talks next month, repeating a strategy that infuriated global-warming activists during last year’s talks, according to three people with knowledge of the matter.

Exclusive: A group of 15 Western ambassadors in Beijing, spearheaded by Canada, are seeking a meeting with the top official in China’s restive, heavily Muslim Xinjiang region for an explanation of alleged rights abuses against ethnic Uighurs.

Business

About 38 percent of American consumers plan to shop on Black Friday this year, and six in 10 of those shoppers anticipate making at least half of their holiday purchases on that day, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed.

Austria’s AMS, which makes facial recognition technology, became the latest Apple supplier to cut its revenue forecast, adding to growing evidence that the latest iPhones are not selling well.

Companies should set up portable accounts to pay for life-long learning to help workers upgrade their skills and remain employable as robots take over more jobs, Adecco Chief Executive Alain Dehaze said.

Reuters TV

U.S. government sources say China has sent a written response to American demands it make wide-ranging trade reforms. It’s a move that could trigger negotiations to bring an end to a trade war between the world’s top economies.

China sends response to U.S. trade demands
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