Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Wednesday 27 Mar 2019

1. MPs vote on Brexit options as Rees-Mogg ‘softens’

MPs are to vote today on their preferred option for Brexit, including cancelling it, but it was not clear this morning whether they will have a free vote or be whipped to follow party lines. Meanwhile, Tory arch-Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg has been accused of “going soft” by ideological colleagues after saying he could back May’s exit plans.

2. Corbyn may whip Labour to back soft Brexit

Several newspapers report this morning that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is close to deciding to order his MPs to vote today in favour of a soft Brexit option which would see the UK enter a so-called “Common Market 2.0”. This plan, put forward by Labour’s Stephen Kinnock and Lucy Powell, has also been backed by some Tories.

3. New cars to have automatic speed limiters

By 2022, all new cars sold in the EU will be required to have automatic speed limiters to detect the speed limits in the areas the car passes through, and slow the car’s engine to comply with them. The EU says it wants to cut road deaths to zero by the year 2050. Road safety charity Brake urged the UK to follow suit, even if it has left the EU before the plans become law.

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4. UK man tries to flee Australia by jet ski

A British man was arrested on Monday as he tried to escape Australia, where he was wanted on drug charges, on a jet ski, Australian police say. The 57-year-old was reported to be carrying a crossbow, though police did not confirm this. He had almost reached Papua New Guinea, across the Torres Strait, when police caught him.

5. The Beat singer Ranking Roger dead at 56

The singer Ranking Roger, lead vocalist for the two-tone ska band The Beat until 1983, died on Tuesday, suffering from two brain tumours and lung cancer. Roger Charlery, the Birmingham-born 56-year-old had recently completed his autobiography. A statement on The Beat website said the singer died at home, surrounded by family.

6. US county declares measles emergency

A county in New York state has declared a state of emergency over an outbreak of measles and has banned unvaccinated children from public spaces. Officials say the outbreak is concentrated in the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, but many parents have rejected vaccination because of misinformation about a link to autism.

7. Trump wants astronauts on moon in five years

The US plans to send astronauts to the moon again within the next five years, with vice-president Mike Pence saying: “We’re in a space race today, just as we were in the 1960s. It’s time for the next giant leap.” Sky News says it is thought President Trump wants a flagship project to champion when he campaigns for re-election in 2020.

8. Tom Cruise’s daughter praises Scientology

Actor Tom Cruise’s daughter Isabella, 26, has made a rare public announcement, telling other London-based Scientologists of her enthusiasm for the controversial church. Cruise’s email has been republished on a blog critical of Scientology. In it, she talks about how she is rising through the ranks of the church, training to be an “auditor”.

9. Coldplay’s Chris Martin is granted restraining order

Coldplay singer Chris Martin has been granted a temporary restraining order against a woman he claims believes she is in a relationship with him. The temporary order forbids the woman from coming within 100 yards of the 42-year-old musician and is in place while courts consider his request for a wider ban.

10. Briefing: what is the Golan Heights?

US President Donald Trump has signed a presidential order recognising Israel as the lawful authority over the Golan Heights, an occupied territory along the Syrian border.

Trump’s decision to make the US the only country in the world to recognise Israel’s sovereignty in the Golan Heights has been met with shock and fury, particularly in the Arab world.

What is the Golan Heights - and is it part of Israel?

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