Morning top 5: Russian-backed content seen by millions of Americans; Sacked Catalonia president to make Brussels appearance; Stormont deadline extended

The top stories this morning on

Social network Facebook says as many as 126-million Americans may have seen content uploaded by operatives in Russia over the last two years.

It has revealed that about 80,000 posts were produced before and after the 2016 US presidential election - many with divisive political messages.

The figures have been seen by the Reuters news agency before Senate hearings this week looking at Russia's impact on sites like Facebook and Twitter.


Catalonia's sacked president is expected to make a public appearance in Brussels later, after fleeing Spain.

Carles Puigdemont travelled to the Belgian capital with five other members of his sacked administration.

It comes after Spain’s state prosecutor called for him to face charges of rebellion, sedition and misuse of public funds.

His Belgian lawyer Paul Bekaert has said that his client is in high spirits and was driven by "strong support among his backers in Catalonia."


Netflix has announced that it is ending it’s House of Cards programme after the next season, amid sexual allegations against Kevin Spacey.

The streaming platform said it was "deeply troubled" over claims that Spacey tried to sexually assault a 14-year-old boy when he was 26.

In a statement, the now 58-year-old said he was beyond horrified to hear the claims, but he didn't remember the encounter.

He also used the statement to come out as a gay man – with critics accusing him of trying to deflect attention from the accusation.


The deadline to restore the Northern Ireland executive has been extended again.

The DUP and Sinn Fein were locked in talks yesterday in the hopes of reaching a deal before midnight last night – however both parties left Stormont shortly before 9pm.

The Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire decided on the extension, after the parties made additional requests of the UK Government which he feels need to be considered.

He said he would reassess the progress of the talks tonight.


There are calls for tougher laws to stop attacks on emergency workers like fire-crews and ambulance teams.

It follows reports of unprovoked attacks on Dublin Fire Brigade across the weekend.

Fianna Fáil TD John Lahart says the attacks are despicable, “particularly around Halloween when they are at their busiest."