Your morning briefing: What you should know for Monday, April15
JC News|April. 15, 2019
Environmental protest 'may bring parts of London to standstill'
Environmental protesters are threatening to bring London to a standstill later today by disrupting some of the capital's busiest areas.
Activists have pledged to block Parliament Square, Marble Arch, Oxford Circus, Waterloo Bridge and Piccadilly Circus in what they say will be a non-violent campaign that could go on for weeks.
The group Extinction Rebellion is demanding the Government takes urgent action on climate change and wildlife declines.
Police have promised they have plans in place for the demonstrations but advised people travelling around London in the coming days to allow extra time for their journeys.
Hopes are rising that a New Zealand nurse held captive by Islamic State in Syria for almost six years may finally be found.
Louisa Akavi’s identity has been revealed for the first time by the International Committee of the Red Cross as it appeals for information about the 62-year-old.
It said there had been eyewitness reports that Ms Akavi was seen by at least two people at a clinic in one of IS’ last outposts in December.
New Zealand Special Forces personnel are also involved in the mission searching for her following the collapse of IS.
Liverpool will fall silent for a minute today to mark the 30th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster.
Ninety-six Liverpool fans lost their lives in the tragedy at the FA Cup semi-final match on April 15 1989.
The minute’s silence will be held across the city at 3.06pm to mark the moment the match was stopped.
Flags on civic buildings will be flown at half mast and the bells of the Town Hall will toll 96 times.
Traffic going through the tunnels which link the city to the Wirral will be stopped for one minute as the silence is held and the Mersey Ferries will mark the anniversary by sounding their horns.
Images of the victims printed on banners, along with the words Never Forgotten, have been put on display at the front of St George's Hall in the city.
From Monday morning, 96 lanterns with lit candles will also be displayed on the steps of the hall, where members of the public will be able to pay their respects and leave tributes.
Michelle Obama has urged the people of the UK to stay engaged with politics and to resist becoming complacent or cynical.
The former US first lady was speaking at the O2 Arena in London last night as part of her book tour and said trepidation and anxiety about the future was being seen all over the planet.
However Mrs Obama said that meant it was crucial people to continue to vote for what they believed in rather than take their rights and liberties for granted.
The housing market has seen its biggest uplift in a year as people become bored of Brexit putting their lives on hold, according to estate agents.
Rightmove said the average asking price for a home jumped by nearly £3,500 in April to £305,449, the biggest month-on-month uplift since March 2018.
It said the uncertain political backdrop continues to hold back the market, with new seller asking prices, the number of properties coming to market and the number of sales agreed all below this time last year.
However Cambridge estate agent Bruce King said there was an increase in market activity because sellers and buyers were becoming fed up with waiting for Brexit and wanted to move on with their lives.
Fantasy TV series Game of Thrones returned for its eighth and final season in the early hours of this morning.
HBO's hugely popular epic has been off-air for almost two years and this morning’s episode was screened simultaneously in both the US and UK, with dedicated British viewers having to stay up until 2am to watch.
Initial reactions from hardcore fans were positive, although a few complained episode one was too short and they could not wait another week for the next instalment.
1452: Leonardo da Vinci, Italian painter, sculptor, architect, musician, engineer, scientist and inventor, the complete Renaissance man, was born.
1755: Dr Samuel Johnson's dictionary was published, containing 40,000 words.
1793: £5 notes were first issued by the Bank of England.
1912: The Titanic sank after striking an iceberg in the North Atlantic on her maiden voyage.
1955: The first McDonald's franchise restaurant was opened by Ray Kroc in Des Plaines, Illinois.
1966: Time magazine voted London "the city of the decade".
1989: Britain's worst football disaster happened at Hillsborough, Sheffield, when 96 fans were crushed to death during an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.