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Missing Journalist, Puffer Jackets and RIP the 18-30 Holiday

MAKING the headlines today is the news Turkish authorities are scouring motorway CCTV footage as suspicions continue to rise that dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered at Istanbul's Saudi consulate and his body smuggled out in a van.

Mr Khashoggi, a US-based critic of the Saudi leadership, went to the consulate to finalise his divorce and did not come back out. A convoy of six cars was seen leaving the consulate two hours later and boxes were caught on security footage being loaded into the back of a black van. Saudi authorities have denied any wrongdoing.

American President Donald Trump meanwhile said there were some pretty bad stories circulating about Khashoggi's fate but hopefully it would "sort itself out". He may as well have said that's one less to deal with.

The annual call has gone out to purchase a puffer jacket - and this year they must be heavily adorned and patterned. The puffer jacket, muses This Reporter, is much the fashion anomaly, in a world where trends are generally sent to make the wearer look teeny tiny, puffer jackets on the other hand make us look, essentially, like a giant walking marshmallow.

Handy for one thing - rebounding off the ice and snow we will inevitably slip on whilst wearing one. This Reporter guesses we must trust the fashion types on this one - in the same way we trust politicians.

With confidence in Europe, unnaturally, high over the possibility of securing a Brexit deal at the October Summit, it fell to No.10 Downing Street to bring our collective hopes crashing back down to earth - another reason to invest in that puffer jacket - with the announcement that actually there were still many issues to overcome.

A spokesperson said there was a huge difference between talking positively about a deal and finalising one and it was going to take some movement on the EU side in order to do so - and This Reporter doesn't think they were referring to EU Chief Jean Claude-Juncker mocking Theresa May's dance moves by jigging onto the stage himself the other day.

Elsewhere Prime Minister Mrs May is in jubilant mood, allegedly, over the results of a poll which concluded her a more popular choice for PM than Boris Johnson - due to being a more trustworthy and decent person (though that's a bit like winning a morality contest against a pilfering macaque monkey).

However, in news sent to ensure she doesn't get ahead of herself, she has been given an ultimatum by her MPs that she has one more shot at getting her Chequer's plan approved by the EU before abandoning it once and for all for something else. This must be one of the "issues" 10 Downing Street were talking about.

In the second piece of grocery-related news in as many days, Tesco has announced it is scrapping all its best before dates on its fruit and vegetables. In a bold move intended to reduce food waste, the supermarket chain will be leaving it up to the consumer to decide whether an apple or plum or broccoli floret has gone past its best. One word - carnage.

More shocking news comes in the form of travel agent Thomas Cook announcing it is scrapping its 18 to 30 holidays. The last flight to Magaluf takes off later this month before Thomas Cook retires the brand famed for its drunken revelry, for good, for lack of take-up.

Instead more focus will be put into Cook's Club, a recent, more upmarket launch, aimed at millennials, which promises them the chance to sample a "melting pot of cultures" and fill up on "affordable vegan delights". But with those best before labels coming off the fruit and veg, This Reporter gives it a week before they're back on the drink.

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