Sign up to receive FirstFT by email here

Britain is reported to be halting the sharing of intelligence with Washington in the wake of the Manchester attack. The move comes after a series of media leaks from the US that UK police say could undermine a “major counter-terrorism investigation”. Images of the bomb materials were leaked to the New York Times, which provided an analysis of the remnants. The photos were published barely 12 hours after Amber Rudd, the British home secretary, said she had made clear to the US that leaks must stop. UK prime minister Theresa May is expected to confront Donald Trump over the leaks when she meets him at a Nato summit on Thursday.

The British authorities are racing to gather intelligence on the bomber, Salman Abedi, who they believe was part of a larger terrorist network, possibly with links to the Brussels and Paris attacks last year. They are also examining his links to Libya. Abedi was of Libyan origin and recently travelled to the country, which remains a haven for Isis jihadis. It has also emerged that MI5 was warned about Abedi years ago by a relative. (BBC, NYT, FT, Guardian, Economist, Times)

In the news

Opec agrees cuts
The Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries will extend its oil production cuts into 2018 as the cartel and its allies attempt to end a three-year supply glut that has hammered crude prices. The extension was agreed at a ministerial meeting in Vienna on Thursday and is expected to be ratified by non-Opec producers later in the day. (FT)

Brazil troops mobilise
Soldiers were deployed after protests against the president Michel Temer turned violent. Thousands had gathered in the country’s capital, Brasília, and demonstrators began attacking government ministries, setting fire to the ministry of agriculture. (FT)

US tests Beijing in South China Sea
The Chinese government has complained to Washington after the US Navy conducted its first freedom of navigation operation in the South China Sea under the Trump administration. It comes as the US president is urging China to increase pressure on North Korea to rein in its missile programme. (FT)

Egypt blocks media websites
The government in Cairo has banned 21 websites, including the main website of Al Jazeera television and the Huffington Post’s Arabic website, for “supporting terrorism”. Security sources said the sites were affiliated by the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, which they deny. (Reuters)

Fed close to June rate rise 
The US central bank signalled it may be close to raising interest rates and is preparing to begin paring back its multi-trillion dollar asset holdings this year as the US economy recovers. (FT)

Bogus Russia document tipped FBI’s Clinton probe
In what would be some of the clearest evidence yet that Russian meddling influenced the 2016 US election, the FBI reportedly received a Russian intelligence document that helped convince director James Comey he needed to speak out about the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server. The FBI later determined that the document was bad intelligence and perhaps even a fake meant to confuse the Americans. (WaPo)

The day ahead

Trump meets Nato
Donald Trump is expected to endorse the organisation’s mutual defence commitment at a ceremony on Thursday, ending months of silence — and questions — over whether the US would automatically aid an ally under attack. (NYT)

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 EU could make life difficult for tech groups ​
​A controversial overhaul of the EU’s rules on video content will encompass everyone from public broadcasters to social media into the same regulatory framework. Supporters say they would oblige the likes of YouTube and Facebook to follow the same rules as normal broadcasters on issues such as hate speech; critics argue that they could throw media diversity and even freedom of speech into doubt. (FT)

China’s losing battle with the undead
The Chinese government has learnt to love — or at least tolerate — zombies (and vampires, werewolves, mummies and ghosts). Dwindling box-office sales have caused the Communist party to rethink its censorship of “cult or superstition” as it is discreetly trying to boost movie revenues. (FT)

Terror in Asia
Manchester is not the only place to have been targeted by terrorists this week. There have also been attacks across Asia — in Bangkok, Jakarta and the southern Philippines — putting pressure not just on these countries’ leaders to act, but also on security forces across the region to be on alert and to take greater pre-emptive measures against terrorism. (NAR)

Norway’s doomsday seed vault
Have you heard of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault? It was built inside a frozen mountainside and safeguards thousands of seeds of the world’s crops. It’s intended to withstand global disaster and operate without human intervention. But a recent flooding suggests it might not be prepared for global warming. (NYT, Verge)

Tourism under climate change
Iceland built up a thriving tourist industry after the 2008 financial crash, and one of the country’s star attractions​ is walking on glaciers. But because of global warming, they are melting so fast that guides are having to remake trails and rope off dangerous areas on a daily basis. (Jazeera)

Video of the day

The UK election explained
Prime Minister Theresa May has brought forward the UK’s next general election to June 8. The FT’s Henry Mance explains why and how the country votes for its government. (FT)

Get alerts on Companies when a new story is published

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2020. All rights reserved.
Reuse this content (opens in new window)

Follow the topics in this article