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News Daily: Brexit talks and aid money stopped

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Theresa May in Brussels for key Brexit talks

Will the UK and EU soon be ready to start talking about trade? Theresa May is in Brussels later to meet European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, amid what BBC Europe editor Katya Adler describes as a mood of "cautious optimism".

The BBC understands that the two sides have reached deals on the UK's Brexit "divorce bill" and the future of citizens' rights. The other issue the EU wants sorted before talks can move on to trade - the border between the Irish Republic and Northern Ireland - still reportedly has to be resolved.

On Sunday, Conservative Brexiteers urged the prime minister not to make further concessions to reach a deal. But Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said there would be no Brexit at all unless Mrs May is supported.

Meanwhile, the EU withdrawal bill is back in the House of Commons later for a fourth day of debate.

UK foreign aid money 'diverted to extremists' in Syria

The UK government has suspended a foreign aid project following a BBC Panorama investigation that found money was being diverted to extremists in Syria. It's also emerged that officers in a UK-backed police force in the war-torn country have been cooperating with courts carrying out summary executions, including a case where two women were stoned to death. The government said it took allegations of co-operation with terrorist groups "extremely seriously". Adam Smith International, the British company running the project, strongly denied the allegations.

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Fewer children doing part-time jobs

Greater pressure to do well in exams is among the reasons offered for a fall in the number of children doing part-time jobs. Figures show the the number of schoolchildren working has declined by a fifth in the past five years. The statistics are based on the number of permits councils have issued allowing under-16s to get jobs. One local authority said a decline in the number of paper rounds available was also a contributing factor.

Five people who changed jobs for something completely different

By Julia Bryson, BBC News

Former Army officer Paul Rawlinson spent five years in the forces before setting up a Scandinavian cafe in Harrogate, North Yorkshire. The idea came after he decided his career would not fit in with the family life he and his wife wanted to create. "In the first five years I had lived in six different places," he says, "and I knew there would be at least three moves in the next three years if I stayed."

Read the full article

What the papers say

Image copyright Times, the i

With Theresa May off to Brussels for Brexit talks, the Times quotes a senior EU official as saying the two sides are "90%" towards a deal that would allow them to move on to the next stage and begin talking about trade. But the Daily Express focuses on what it calls a "revolt" by Brexit campaigners unwilling to make further concessions to Brussels. Meanwhile, Metro, the Guardian and the Daily Mirror lead on a report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation suggesting 400,000 children and 300,000 adults have been pushed into poverty since 2013.

Daily digest

Waste crackdown Co-op sells food beyond "best before" date

New Facebook office Social media giant creates 800 jobs in UK

Sex abuse claims Metropolitan Opera suspends conductor James Levine

Asthma advice Wear a scarf over your face to prevent attacks this winter, sufferers told

If you watch one thing today

The city built just for scientists

If you listen to one thing today

Exploring the Indian Ocean

If you read one thing today

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Who's buying the Vladimir Putin calendar?

Lookahead

19:00 The draw takes place for the third round of the English FA Cup, which sees Premier League and Championship sides join the competition.

On this day

1961 Health Minister Enoch Powell announces that women who wish to have oral contraception - known as the Pill - will now be able to get it on the NHS.

From elsewhere

A new kind of political party emerges in Sweden (New Yorker)

Meet Britain's next great ballerinas (Spectator)

How Instagram has ruined restaurants (Independent)

Cricket bars, anyone? Christmas dinners of the past and future (Daily Mail)

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