Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Saturday 5 Sep 2020

1

Thousands may be defying quarantine as Covid cases surge

Police across the country are dealing with thousands of alleged violations of quarantine rules involving residents who may not be self-isolating after trips abroad, reports The Guardian. The news comes as scientists say that the UK risks the return of national lockdown after another surge in the number of positive cases was recorded on Friday. The government’s daily figures showed 1,940 new cases – the highest since May.

2

Trump condemned for ‘describing dead soldiers as losers’

Donald Trump is facing criticism over reports he dismissed US soldiers killed in action as “losers” and “suckers”. A veterans' group posted a video of families whose children were killed in action. “You don't know what it is to sacrifice,” says one child. The US president has strongly challenged the reports, calling them “fake news”.

3

Tony Abbott is appointed as UK trade adviser

Boris Johnson has appointed Tony Abbott as an official UK trade adviser, despite condemnation of the former Australian PM’s views on women, the gay community and climate change. He is among nine external advisers appointed to the Board of Trade. Liz Truss, the international trade secretary, said the advisers were “a diverse group of people who share Britain’s belief in free enterprise, democracy and high standards and rules-based trade”.

4

Extinction Rebellion blockade Murdoch's headquarters

Activists from Extinction Rebellion blocked roads leading to two UK printworks owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp last night. A spokesperson said the protesters were trying to prevent the company’s papers from reaching newsstands on Saturday. “If we are to sort out this mess we’re in, the mainstream media must stop profiting from clickbait culture that is swimming in misinformation,” they added.

5

‘Extraordinary shift’ of Covid-19 cases towards young people

Most cases of Covid-19 are now in younger people in what The Times describes as an “extraordinary shift that has raised hopes that deaths can be kept low without lockdowns”. Two thirds of confirmed infections are in the under-40s while just a fifth of cases are in people over 50, compared with three quarters in the spring.

6

Jacob Blake appears in court from his hospital bed

Jacob Blake has appeared in court from his hospital bed. The 29-year-old, who was shot seven times by police, appeared through Zoom to plead not guilty to criminal trespass, third-degree sexual assault and disorderly conduct. Blake has been left paralysed from the waist down after he was shot by a white police officer on 23 August in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

7

Model predicts death toll could triple by the end of 2020

A new model predicts that global deaths from Covid-19 could triple by the end of the year to 1.9m. Europe, Central Asia and the US are said to be at the greatest risk. “These first ever worldwide projections by country offer a daunting forecast as well as a roadmap towards relief from Covid-19 that government leaders as well as individuals can follow,” said a spokesman.

8

Jewish professor admits she has pretended to be black

A Jewish US professor Jessica Krug has admitted that she has pretended to be Black for years. Jessica Krug, an activist who teaches African American history, said: “I have eschewed my lived experience as a white Jewish child in suburban Kansas City under various assumed identities within a Blackness that I had no right to claim.” George Washington University says she will not teach classes this semester.

9

Calls for help as 72% of family pharmacies come under threat

Thousands of independently owned chemists could be forced to close down, a report by accountants Ernst & Young has found. Calling for more funds from the NHS, the report predicts that 72% of the family businesses will be losing money within four years. The broadcaster Dr Hilary Jones says family pharmacies have become a community lifeline during the Covid-19 pandemic.

10

Five dead after shooting in home near Toronto

Five people have been found dead following an early morning shooting in a home near Toronto. A police spokesman said the dead include four men and one woman, two of whom were under 18. He added that officers also found a 50-year-old woman in the house with a gunshot wound. The suspected perpetrator is believed to have died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound

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