The following are the top stories in the Maltese and overseas press.

Times of Malta leads with the words of caution by the European Commission about Malta’s Budget.

The Malta Independent also highlights how the government may not be able to meet its financial targets next year.

In-Nazzjon leads with the opening of the PN general council, including an address by deputy leader Mario de Marco who underscored the need for honesty in politics and real meritocracy.

l-orizzont reports how a court decided that Sebastianno Brunno, an alleged mafia boss, is to be extradited.

The overseas press

Hurriyet reports Pope Francis has urged Muslim leaders to condemn the “barbaric violence” being committed in Islam’s name against religious minorities in Iraq and Syria. As he arrived in Turkey for a visit aimed at improving interfaith relations, Francis reaffirmed that military force was justified to halt the Islamic State group’s advance, and called for greater dialogue between Christians, Muslims and people of all faiths to end fundamentalism.

Blick says police in Austria have detained 13 suspects in a series of raids targeting people believed to recruit and raise funds for radical Islamist groups in the Middle East. They also seized cash and propaganda material.

Le Monde reports France has warned that if the international community failed to resolve the Middle East impasse, it would recognise Palestine as a state. French lawmakers are set to hold a vote on Palestine nationhood on December 2.

Ming Pao says police in Hong Kong early this morning charged demonstrators, pepper-spraying and wrestling them to the ground. A three-hour march by hundreds of people calling for “real full democracy” helped put the city’s 28,000-strong police force further on edge.

Deutsche Welle reports the UN torture watchdog has lambasted the United States for police brutality and harsh prison conditions. A report said the country needed to improve in order to comply with a treaty it signed in 1987.

Voice of Nigeria quotes President Goodluck Jonathan pledging “to leave no stone unturned” in tracking down the perpetrators of a mosque attack that killed 100 people and injured many others. No one has so far claimed responsibility for the attack but many say it bore all the hallmarks of Boko Haram militant group.

AFP reports European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has defended his country Luxembourg’s controversial tax deals with global firms, saying it had no choice if it wanted to stay competitive. Juncker survived a no confidence vote in the European Parliament on Thursday after leaked files that showed Luxembourg allowed hundreds of top companies – including Apple, Pepsi, IKEA and Heinz – to enjoy tax breaks during Juncker’s 19 years in office.

El Pais reports 10 African migrants managed to scale the border fence between Morocco and the Spanish enclave of Melilla in broad daylight Friday – a day after 500 tried to storm the barrier. As many as 15,000 migrants have tried to get into the Spanish enclave since the beginning of the year, with 2,000 succeeding.

Cairo Radio reports tension is high in Egypt as a court is expected to deliver its verdict in the retrial of ousted President Hosni Mubarak on charges of conspiring in the killing of protesters during the 2011 uprising. Last year, an appeals court overturned an initial life sentence given to Mubarak in 2012 on technical grounds. If acquitted, Mubarak will not be released as he is serving a three-year sentence for embezzling public funds. The 86-year-old denies all the charges against him.

Nuuk TV says Greenland voters began casting their ballots on Friday in an early election dominated by harsh economic reality. Triggered by an expenses scandal, the vote comes just 20 months after the previous elections to fill Greenland’s 31-member parliament, when full independence from former colonial master Denmark was the top campaign issue

The Daily Mail reports a pregnant single mother was yesterday handed a suspended six month prison sentence after she told her six children she was going to the supermarket – and flew to Australia for a six-week holiday with her Chinese boyfriend whom she met online. A court heard the 43-year-old woman effectively left her 14-year-old son in charge of his siblings. Police were alerted when the teenager called his grandparents, who dialled 999, and the mother was arrested when she flew back into the UK in February. 


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