Daily briefing: Brexit bill backlash, Lake District’s heritage stamp, art of being fired – Financial Times

Daily briefing: Brexit bill backlash, Lake District’s heritage stamp, art of being fired – Financial Times


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Donald Trump vowed to “move forward in working constructively with Russia” after Vladimir Putin denied any involvement in Russia’s interference in the 2016 US election. Mr Putin also hailed a fresh start to the relationship, praising Mr Trump, saying the “real Trump is completely different from the TV Trump” and describing him as “sane” and “concrete” in his responses.

Republicans and Democrats alike blasted Mr Trump’s comments, including his suggestion on Twitter that the two countries would form a joint “cyber security unit”. Republican Senator Marco Rubio said on Twitter that “Partnering with Putin on a ‘Cyber Security Unit’ is akin to partnering with Assad on a ‘Chemical Weapons Unit’.” Mr Trump’s comments came as US officials said Russian government hackers had penetrated energy and nuclear company business networks.

Meanwhile, the New York Times reported that Mr Trump’s eldest son Donald Trump Jr, his son-in-law and chief adviser Jared Kushner and his campaign chairman Paul Manafort had a previously-unreported meeting with a Kremlin-linked lawyer during the campaign, the first confirmed private meeting between a Russian national and members of Mr Trump’s inner circle during the race.

Conservative writer Stephen Hayes called secretary of state Rex Tillerson’s readout of the meeting “a diplomatic depantsing” that “did more to further Russia’s interests than Russian propaganda outlets could have possibly hoped to accomplish themselves.” (FT, WaPo, NYT, Weekly Standard)

In the news

The G19?
The G20 nations put on a face-saving show of unity at the Hamburg summit by negotiating a unanimous communiqué despite the deep divisions on trade and climate change driven by Donald Trump’s America First approach, and fears among foreign leaders about the future of global alliances and US leadership in the Trump era. Among the biggest divisions: climate change. Meanwhile, Angela Merkel has become embroiled in arguments over the violent demonstrations that overshadowed the Hamburg summit. (FT, WaPo, NYT)

Barclays at risk of fresh fraud charges
The bank will hear within a fortnight whether it faces a second set of criminal fraud charges over its emergency 2008 cash call, when it turned to Qatari investors to stay out of UK government control. The UK’s Serious Fraud Office is preparing to make a charging decision in respect of Barclays’ subsidiary, Barclays Bank. People familiar with the situation told the Financial Times that they expect the decision to happen within two weeks. (FT)

Iraq claims victory over Isis in Mosul
Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi arrived in Mosul on Sunday to declare victory over Isis and pronounce the symbolic end to the jihadi group, after eight months of brutal street-to-street battles in which thousands of people lost their lives. (FT)

Hundreds of thousands march against Erdogan’s crackdown
The culmination of the three-week March for Justice delivered a powerful message against the government crackdown on tens of thousands of workers over the past year, though organisers said it was a non-partisan exercise.(NYT)

China enlists start-ups in high-tech arms race
Defence procurement was once the preserve of a few secretive state-owned conglomerates — but Beijing is opening up the sector to an increasing number of small private sector start-ups in the race to create the next generation of high-tech weaponry. (FT)

China’s final frontier
A look at Beijing University’s attempts to creating a self-sustaining space station, where everything from plant cuttings to urine are recycled. (Reuters)

Foreign doctors say Liu Xiaobo able to leave China
Two foreign physicians who visited the terminally ill Chinese dissident said he could be safely transported abroad for further treatment, contradicting the assessments of his Chinese hospital that he is too sick to travel. (FT)

Goldman brings up the rear
Goldman Sachs Asset Management is the worst-selling fund manager globally this year. Investors have pulled an estimated $26.7bn from GSAM’s mutual funds so far in 2017, with more than half of the asset manager’s strategies globally suffering outflows. (FT)

The day ahead

Syria peace talks
A seventh round of intra-Syrian peace talks start in Geneva despite a shift in focus towards Russia and US-led negotiations. The US and Moscow agreed a ceasefire in south-west Syria on Friday in a sign the two powers can co-operate on ending the six-year conflict. (FT)

Keep up with the important business, economic and political stories in the coming days with the FT’s Week Ahead.

What we’re reading

The fake EU-Japan trade deal
Wolfgang Munchau on the most dangerous fake news of our time: “the stories that fall into the too-good-to-be-true category. Like the one that the EU and Japan have reached a trade deal.” (FT)

The guerrilla journalists defying Isis one video at a time
Meet Abdalaziz Alhamza, the public face of Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently, the group of young, mostly anonymous citizens journalists who risk their lives to counter Isis propaganda with dispatches from inside the jihadist group’s capital. (Wired)

Southeast Asia enters the danger zone 
Victor Mallet on Michael Vatikiotis’s new book, Blood and Silk, which argues that inequality and toxic identity politics will doom a region often celebrated for its dynamism. (FT)

Are we on the cusp of a cashless society?
A half a century after the debut of the ATM, predictions of a shift to virtual currencies have technology on their side, but ignore the politics behind our payment systems, writes Rebecca Sprang. (FT) 

The origins of Christianity
James Wood on Emmanuel Carrere’s The Kingdom, which explores how a tiny, obscure sect became a global religion. (New Yorker)

Lunch with Moïse Katumbi
The FT sits down with the trucking tycoon — and potential future leader of the Congo — to discuss why he thinks he’s “the doctor to treat the sick elephant”. (FT)

Foxconn wants to make a name for itself
After years of playing the nameless supplier to tech’s biggest companies, the Taiwanese company is no longer content with just assembling products for others. It now wants to manufacture its own high-margin components to compensate for slim profits in its core assembly business. (NAR)

Howard Hodgkin in India
Jackie Wullschlager on a new exhibition of the artists’ work from the subcontinent: “Remarkably often, charismatic pieces turn out here to be markers within Hodgkin’s oeuvre, giving the exhibition the character of a mini-retrospective, suggesting that freedom in India helped him find his identity as a painter, misunderstood in Britain until his fifties.” (FT)

Video of the day

The week ahead 
Vanessa Kortekaas provides a briefing of the key stories to watch, including US President Donald Trump attending France’s Bastille Day celebrations with Emmanuel Macron, another round of Syrian peace talks and PepsiCo’s second-quarter results. (FT)

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