News Daily: Mugabe deadline and Charles Manson dies

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Mugabe set deadline to quit

He's still refusing to go but Robert Mugabe's own party has set him a deadline to resign by 10:00 GMT on Monday, or face impeachment. Zimbabwe's president - already placed under house arrest, stripped of the leadership of the Zanu-PF party and facing huge public demonstrations in favour of him quitting - said in a TV address on Sunday that he wanted to remain in power for the next few weeks. He had been expected to stand down immediately but, according to the BBC's Africa editor Fergal Keane, he appears to have changed his mind.

Emmerson Mnangagwa, the deputy he sacked two weeks ago - seemingly in favour of his own wife, Grace - has been named Zanu-PF's new leader. So, will Mr Mugabe call time on his 37 years of rule or will Zimbabwe have to spend several weeks going through the impeachment process? We'll have all the latest developments.

Cult leader Charles Manson dies, aged 83

Charles Manson, the head of a cult whose members he directed to commit seven murders in the late 1960s - including that of the heavily pregnant Hollywood star Sharon Tate - has died, aged 83. He was admitted to Bakersfield hospital in California earlier this month, after more than four decades in prison, US media reported. Manson continued to inspire fascination and horror throughout his life. Here's a look at why.

Germany coalition talks fail

Could Germany be heading for another election after Chancellor Angela Merkel's two-month-long attempts at forming a coalition collapsed? The free-market liberal FDP group has announced it can't work with Mrs Merkel's conservative CDU/CSU bloc, saying there's no "basis of trust". So, the chancellor is due to meet President Frank-Walter Steinmeier later without having formed a working government. He can order fresh polls if he wants to. Mrs Merkel could also form a minority government in coalition with the Greens, but the newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung is calling the FDP's withdrawal the greatest crisis of her 12 years in power.

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'No others involved' in Gaia Pope's death

Police say the cause of death of 19-year-old Gaia Pope, whose body was found on Saturday, is "undetermined". There were no injuries to her to suggest "any other person was involved", they added. Miss Pope's body was discovered near Swanage, Dorset, 11 days after she went missing. Her older sister, Clara Pope-Sutherland, described her as the "light of my life".

In pictures: 70 years of royal marriage

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are celebrating their platinum wedding anniversary. Buckingham Palace has released a series of portraits to commemorate the occasion. Using archive photographs, we look back at the 70 years of their marriage and family life.

How big is China's influence in Zimbabwe?

By Dr Alex Vines, Chatham House

China's relations with Zimbabwe are deep, starting during the Rhodesian Bush War. Robert Mugabe failed in 1979 to get Soviet backing, so turned to China, which provided his guerrilla fighters with weapons and training. Both countries formally established diplomatic relations at Zimbabwean independence in 1980 and Mr Mugabe visited Beijing as prime minister the following year. He has been a regular visitor since.

Read the full article

What the papers say

The front pages are dominated by Robert Mugabe's decision to try to cling on to power. The Guardian says Zimbabwe is in "chaos", while the Daily Telegraph reports that his apparent volte-face "stunned the world". Metro calls him "stubborn". Elsewhere, the Daily Mail says "greedy" universities are investigating ex-students' salaries and pensions as part of a drive for donations. And the Daily Star predicts a white Christmas.

Daily digest

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Today's look ahead

16:00 The Commons Public Accounts Committee takes evidence from senior civil servants on Brexit and the future of the UK's border controls.

20:00 Brighton and Hove Albion host Stoke City in the Premier League.

21:30 US First Lady Melania Trump receives the official White House Christmas tree.

On this day

1990 Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher fails to win the necessary support of two-thirds of Conservative MPs after she is challenged for the party leadership by Michael Heseltine.

From elsewhere

The catastrophe of Saudi Arabia's intervention in Yemen (New Yorker)

Deborah, the British tank that smashed through German defences 100 years ago (Telegraph)

Why do analysts use the couch? (Guardian)

I became a vegan and didn't talk about it (Sydney Morning Herald)

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