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Europe briefing: Brexit latest, ‘gilets jaunes’ no confidence motion and Sweden hosts Yemen talks

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Europe briefing: Brexit latest, ‘gilets jaunes’ no confidence motion and Sweden hosts Yemen talks

Europe briefing: Brexit latest, ‘gilets jaunes’ no confidence motion and Sweden hosts Yemen talks
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Reuters
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1. EU court to issue Brexit ruling on Monday

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) announced that it will deliver its judgement on whether the UK can unilaterally reverse its move to leave the European Union at 9 a.m. CET on Monday.

The ruling is due on the eve of a parliamentary vote on whether to accept the Brexit deal put forward by Prime Minister Theresa May.

The ECJ’s advocate general ruled earlier this week that the UK should have the option to cancel its withdrawal from the bloc unilaterally.

2. Opposition MPs to file ‘no confidence’ motion against French government amid ‘gilets jaunes’ protests

MPs from the Socialist Party, La France Insoumise (LFI) and Parti Communiste Français (PCF), who are dissatisfied with the French government's response to the "gilets jaunes" (yellow vests) crisis, are planning to file a motion of no confidence on Monday.

"In the coming days, we will seek to broaden the group of people who can file this motion with us," including in other political groups, the head of the French Socialist Party, Olivier Faure, told reporters.

The plans were announced after French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on Wednesday that the French government will abandon a fuel tax hike, which sparked the protests, from next year's budget.

However, many 'gilets jaunes' have vowed to continue protesting.

3. Yemen warring parties meet in Sweden for peace talks

Yemen's warring parties began a meeting in Sweden on Thursday for UN-led peace talks, where they agreed to a prisoner swap that will allow thousands of families to be reunited.

Yemen's conflict pits the Houthis, who seized the capital in 2014, against forces backed by a Sunni Muslim coalition trying to restore the internationally-recognised government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.

The UN hopes to help achieve a ceasefire and the formation of a transitional governance deal.

4. Commemorations in Greece 10 years after police killing

Greece is marking the 10-year anniversary of the death of 15-year-old Alexis Grigoropoulos, who was shot dead by Greek police.

"This case has become a landmark in Greece's recent history," said Euronews correspondent Fay Doulgkeri.

"First of all, because it's a symbolic event for people here who fight against police brutality and against excessive force from the police. The second reason is that many people think that this event is the main event that triggered the movement that later, during the years of crisis, was transformed into the anti-austerity form."

4. Italy to make final cost analysis of controversial budget

Italy’s government will make a final assessment of the costs of the main measures in its controversial 2019 budget, Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini said.

"By today we will have the true estimates for (measures) on work, pensions, taxes ... if we have put more money than needed, the extra money could be moved towards something else," he said in an interview with Radio1.

The European Commission has rejected the budget and threatened Rome with a disciplinary procedure that could lead to fines.

READ: Three charts that show why Italy's budget is an EU problem

5. Barnier says UK’s future is at stake in Brexit vote

The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, called on everyone to “bear their responsibilities” ahead of a vote on Brexit in the British parliament next week.

Barnier said the future of the UK was at stake in the vote, in which MPs will decide whether to back British Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal with the EU.

"If there is no withdrawal treaty, there is no transition, no basis of confidence that we need with the British regarding the future relationship," he said.

REUTERS/Yves Herman

6. Luxembourg first country to introduce free public transport

Luxembourg is set to become the first country in the world to remove fares on all public transport.

The plans, put forward by Prime Minister Xavier Bettel's coalition government, will see trains, trams and buses run free of charge from next summer.

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