Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Saturday 26 Jul 2014

The Week’s super-quick catch-up on the main news talking points, available from 8am daily

1. WILL ISRAEL/HAMAS TRUCE BE EXTENDED?
A 12-hour humanitarian truce between Israel and Hamas has begun. During the pause, international efforts to negotiate a longer seven-day ceasefire will continue. Over 870 Palestinians, mostly civilians, and 38 Israelis have died since the conflict started on 8 July. Gaza came under heavy bombardment shortly before the ceasefire took effect.
2. HOUSING NIMBYS HAVE 'HAD THEIR DAY'
‘Nimbys’ have had their day – that’s the message from new planning minister Brandon Lewis. Writing in the Daily Telegraph, Lewis says there has been a “dramatic swing” in public opinion - with almost half of people now in favour of new housing in their area. A survey suggests the number of those in favour of house building in their area rose from 28% to 47% between 2010 and 2013.
3. CAN ISIS BRING DOWN PASSENGER PLANES?
Intelligence sources fear that Isis militants in Iraq have obtained surface-to-air missiles, endangering the thousands of passengers who fly over the conflict zone every day. The Times has found that British Airways, Air France, Lufthansa and Qantas fly over Isis-held areas of Iraq every day, including above the city of Mosul, a key Isis stronghold.
4. ‘POOR DOORS’ TREND SEGREGATES RESIDENTS
Some London housing developments are segregating less well-off residents by forcing them to use separate entrances, says The Guardian. The growing ‘poor doors’ trend in upmarket apartment blocks, which are required to include affordable homes to gain planning permission, sees poorer residents forced to use separate entrances than their wealthier neighbours.
5. BOOK CLAIMS CLINTON ‘ENERGISER’ AFFAIR
A new book claims Bill Clinton has a “blonde, buxom mistress” who frequently visits the Clintons’ home. Dubbed ‘Energiser’ by secret service agents who guard the Clintons, she is described as “charming and friendly”, bringing agents biscuits in order to buy their silence. The Daily Mail claims that ‘Energiser’ may be the wealthy divorcee Julie McMahon. Neither party commented on the story.
6. JUDGE ‘FELL ASLEEP’ DURING RAPE TRIAL
A rape case had to be abandoned after the judge was accused of falling asleep during the trial. Barristers complained that Recorder Philip Cattan had dozed off as the first alleged victim was cross-examined at Manchester Crown Court. The trial was abandoned and will have to start again. An investigation into the complaint is underway.
7. COUNCILS CALLING FOR ‘TESCO TAX’
A group of English councils has asked the government for new powers to tax large supermarkets. Derby City Council has called for the right to bring in a new levy to ensure supermarket spending "re-circulates" in local communities. Some 19 other local authorities are backing the levy, known as the "Tesco tax", which could raise up to £400m a year.
8. MAN KICKED OFF FLIGHT OVER TWEET
An American man was kicked off a plane for tweeting a complaint about service and told he would have to delete the tweet before re-boarding. Duff Watson tweeted a complaint about the gate agent after he boarded a Southwest Airlines’ flight to Washington. He was then told he had to “exit the flight immediately” and was only allowed to re-board once he had deleted the tweet.
9. INVADING JELLYFISH ARE ‘HARMLESS’
Holidaymakers in Cornwall are being told not to panic despite an invasion of jellyfish. Tourism bosses insist that the jellyfish, some of which measure one metre in diameter, are harmless. Scientists say the number of sightings of jellyfish is spectacularly higher than in previous years. But a spokesman for Visit Cornwall said: “It’s part of the fun.”
10. DROGBA RETURNS TO STAMFORD BRIDGE
Didier Drogba has re-signed for Chelsea on a one-year deal. The 36-year-old striker, who won 10 trophies at Chelsea between 2004 and 2012, was a free agent after leaving Galatasaray. Meanwhile, Arsenal are closing in on the signing of Southampton’s England under-19 defender Calum Chambers for a fee of around £16m.