The world was watching and waiting this week as delegates from almost 200 countries wrangled over climate commitments at Cop28.
The UN’s 12-day Climate Change Conference proved controversial before it even began. Many questioned the choice of Dubai as host, with the UAE accused of planning to use the summit to strike oil and gas deals.
And although the talks have been dominated by a damning UN report that called for accelerated action against climate change, delegates have struggled to reach agreements on how and when to phase out fossil fuels.
The UK is among a group of richer nations that have pledged a total of around $400 million for a “loss and damage fund” for victims of climate disaster. But Rishi Sunak made only a brief stop at the conference, fuelling anger following his government’s recent net zero rollbacks.
In another Tory rethink, Home Secretary James Cleverly signed a new treaty with Rwanda in a bid to revive the UK’s stalled deportation policy and reduce record net migration. But the government was plunged into crisis hours later, when Robert Jenrick resigned as immigration minister over the legislation, which he claimed “does not go far enough”.
The US Congress was also at odds, over emergency funding to Ukraine. On Wednesday, the Senate blocked an aid package that included more than $60 billion in new military support for Kyiv. With the EU also divided over a €50 billion support package for Ukraine, Kyiv is facing an increasingly difficult battle to secure funding for the war against Vladimir Putin‘s invading forces.
To find out how closely you’ve been paying attention to the latest developments in the news and other global events, put your knowledge to the test with our Quiz of The Week.
1. Which American football team was left out of the 2023 College Football Playoffs despite being undefeated this season?
- Michigan Wolverines
- Texas Longhorns
- Alabama Crimson Tide
- Florida State Seminoles
2. Which podcast became the first ever to be awarded the British Academy President’s Medal for services to the humanities?
- “The News Agents”
- “The Rest is History”
- “Off Menu with Ed Gamble and James Acaster”
- “Desert Island Discs”
3. Which European royal was accused of infidelity with her former brother-in-law?
- Queen Letizia of Spain
- Queen Margrethe of Denmark
- Queen Mathilde of Belgium
- Queen Silvia of Sweden
4. Billie Eilish accused which publication of “outing” her?
- Rolling Stone
- Vanity Fair
5. Former US diplomat Manuel Rocha is accused of being an undercover agent for more than 40 years for which country?
6. Proposals for enforcing the UK’s Online Safety Act include the mandatory use of facial age estimation technology to check users of what?
- Pornography sites
- Gambling sites
- Alcohol brands’ sites
- E-cigarette retail sites
7. What is the name of the cheese dubbed the “world’s smelliest” set to cause a stink in UK supermarkets?
8. Which golfer this week became the latest to leave the PGA Tour for the Saudi-funded LIV Golf circuit?
- Jon Rahm
- Rory McIlroy
- Viktor Hovland
- Scottie Scheffler
9. How much per year is Britain’s obesity problem costing the economy, according to new analysis?
- £10 million
- £10 million
- £10 billion
- £100 billion
10. Which US congressman this week announced his decision to retire from Congress at the end of this year “to serve America in new ways”?
- George Santos
- Kevin McCarthy
- Steve Scalise
- Jim Jordan
1. Florida State Seminoles
The College Football Playoff committee omitted the 13-0 Seminoles after the team’s star quarterback suffered a season-ending injury. Critics including Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis have protested against the decision, which marks the first time in CFP’s 10-year history that an undefeated major conference team has been left out.
2. “The Rest is History”
The British Academy awarded the prestigious prize to the popular podcast, hosted by Tom Holland and Dominic Sandbrook, for success in “creating a new generation of history enthusiasts”. The show is made by Gary Lineker’s company Goalhanger Podcasts, and is part of a hit series that includes “The Rest is Entertainment” and “The Rest is Politics”.
3. Queen Letizia of Spain
Jaime del Burgo, the former husband of the queen’s sister Telma, claims to have had an affair with Letizia while she was pregnant with one of her two children by King Felipe. The businessman posted an image on social media on Sunday showing a pregnant Letizia that she allegedly sent to him with a message of love.
Eilish has called for an end to speculation about her sexuality that began when the “Bad Guy” singer suggested during a recent interview for Variety that she was attracted to women. After then being asking at Variety’s Hitmakers event whether she had intended to come out, Eilish sarcastically thanked the magazine in an Instagram post for “outing” her “instead of talking about anything else that matters”.
Colombia-born Rocha, a former ambassador to Bolivia, served as a “clandestine agent” of Cuba throughout his 20-year career in the State Department and the following two decades, the Justice Department said in charges unsealed on Monday. He was arrested last week following a long-running FBI investigation, and if convicted currently faces up to 10 years in prison, but more charges were expected to be filed.
6. Pornography sites
Draft rules from regulator Ofcom would require porn sites to ensure users are over 18 by using age-checking measures including face scans, photo-ID documents and credit card checks. Find out more with The Week Unwrapped podcast.
The brie-style cheese, available in some Asda stores this Christmas, has an “exotic aroma” of “old feet”, according to makers Highland Fine Cheeses. For more stories from the stranger side of life, sign up to The Week’s Tall Tales newsletter.
8. Jon Rahm
The Spaniard had previously ruled out joining the Saudi-funded league, which began in 2021. But the world No.3 and two-time major winner changed his mind after agreeing a deal worth a reported £450 million.
9. £100 billion
The research, commissioned by the Tony Blair Institute, found that the damaging effect on national productivity from excess weight was nine times bigger than previously thought. The total estimated cost to the economy is roughly 4% of the UK’s GDP.
10. Kevin McCarthy
The California Republican announced his resignation in a newspaper column on Wednesday, two months after becoming the first House speaker in history to be ousted from the role. The imminent departure of McCarthy from Congress, after 17 years in office, will leave his party with a slim 220-213 majority in the chamber.