The 10 most important things in the world right now

Thousands of locals and visitors to Sydney descend on iconic Bondi Beach to cool down in the water on January 11, 2017. High temperatures combined with rising humidity have made for an uncomfortable day in Sydney, with temperatures hitting 40 degrees Celsius in some parts of the city. Photo: James D. Morgan/ Getty Images.

Hello! Here’s what you need to know on Wednesday.

1. US intel chiefs tell Trump that Russian operatives claim to have compromising information on him. A report which has been published by Buzzfeed details how Russia has tried to cultivate Trump for at least five years.

2. Obama has delivered his final major planned speech as president. In his emotional speech he touted the results of his tenure, noting the lower unemployment rate and millions of new recipients of health insurance covered under the Affordable Care Act, among other achievements.

3. Beijing flew a strategic bomber around contested South China Sea islands in a show of force. A Chinese H-6 strategic bomber flew around the Spratly Islands at the weekend. It’s the second such flight by a Chinese bomber in the South China Sea this year.

4. UK Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn has said he would not rule out continuing to support the free movement of people from the EU, just hours after his party briefed that he was no longer “wedded” to the idea.

5. Morocco has banned the sale and production of the burka. Letters announcing the ban have been sent out, giving businesses 48 hours to get rid of their stock, according to local reports. There has not yet been an official announcement from the government.

6. Volkswagen has agreed to pay US$4.3 billion (AU$5.8 billion) over the emissions scandal. The German car maker also said it would plead guilty to breaking certain US laws.

7. Snapchat is making the UK its international headquarters. It is an unusual move for a US-based tech firm, with other companies chosing other European countries including Ireland and the Netherlands for their HQ to take advantage of lower corporation tax rates.

8. An $830,000 horse has linked Samsung and a huge South Korean presidential scandal. Choi Soon-sil, an aide of president Park Geun-hye, is accused of taking cash in exchange for influence from companies. She now faces charges of abuse of power and fraud, making Park’s future now look dubious.

9. Hundreds of neo-Nazis have “gone underground” in Germany — and experts are worried they’re creating new right-wing terrorist groups. It comes after there were 600 arrest warrants for neo-Nazis outstanding in Germany last month alone.

10. The Pentagon just tested drones that can attack an enemy like a swarm of killer bees. During the test, three F/A-18 Super Hornets spat out more than 100 tiny Perdix drones, which then linked up with each other to collectively make decisions and fly in formation.

And finally…

Check out this stunning Australian cloud phenomenon that has conspiracy theorists going crazy

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