Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Saturday 3 Oct 2020


Trump flown to hospital with ‘breathing trouble’

Donald Trump has been flown to hospital after testing positive for coronavirus. The White House said the president was “fatigued but in good spirits” and was taken to hospital as a precaution. The BBC says Trump is “feverish” and an advisor has told CNN there is “reason for concern” as the president had “trouble breathing” following his positive test. “This is serious,” said the source.


Hopes rise for Covid-19 vaccination by Easter

Every adult in the country could receive a coronavirus vaccine by Easter, claims The Times. Scientists working on the Oxford vaccine hope it could be approved by regulators by January, with some health officials estimating that every adult could receive a dose within six months. However, others say it could take as long as a year before everyone who was eligible received the vaccine. 


Chances of deal ‘very good’ as UK and EU speak again

Boris Johnson and EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen will speak in a video call today after negotiations over a post-Brexit trade deal broke up without agreement. However, the prime minister told the Daily Telegraph that the chances of a deal are “very good” if everyone “exercises some common sense”. Today’s call is believed to be aiming to “take stock of negotiations and discuss next steps”.


Russian journalist self-immolates after home is searched

A Russian journalist died after setting herself on fire in front of the local branch of the interior ministry. After her apartment was searched by police and prior to her self-immolation, Irina Slavina wrote on her Facebook page: “I ask you to blame the Russian Federation for my death.” She was editor-in-chief at Koza Press, a small local news outlet that prided itself on having “no censorship, no orders ‘from above’”.


Major Covid outbreak at Northumbria University

Northumbria University has said 770 of its students have tested positive for Covid-19. The outbreak has taken the total number of cases among students to more than 2,000 across 65 universities, with most testing positive in the last week. Jo Grady, the UCU general secretary said: “The university sector and the government must address this public health crisis immediately.”


Weather warnings issued after Storm Alex subsides

A number of weather warnings for rain have been issued after Storm Alex subsided. An amber weather warning is in place for North West England, South West England, Wales and the West Midlands from midday Saturday until 6am on Sunday. Several regions will see between 25 and 50mm of rain, with up to 90mm on higher ground in Wales and southwest England, the Met Office said.


Police probe MP who travelled with Covid-19 symptoms

Police have launched an investigation into Margaret Ferrier MP who travelled hundreds of miles across the UK after she tested positive for Covid-19.  The MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton West has been suspended by the SNP but has so far ignored calls for her to resign as an MP. Her own party leader Nicola Sturgeon was among those who led calls for her to stand down.


‘Red wall’ families £1,000 worse off under Tory plans

One in three working-age families in so-called “red wall” constituencies will be £1,000 a year worse off if government plans to cut universal credit benefit rates go ahead. The Resolution Foundation thinktank says the potentially dramatic hit would fall disproportionately on families in areas the government has promised to “level up” economically.


Most of Johnson's new hospitals will not be new

Most of the 40 new hospitals promised by Boris Johnson will not be totally new, reports The Guardian. Despite the prime minister’s headline-grabbing pledge, the bulk of the government’s £3.7bn scheme’s projects involve rebuilding or consolidation. NHS Providers, which represents hospital trusts, said the real cost of building 40 new hospitals would be more like £20bn.


Six new sex assault charges for Harvey Weinstein

Harvey Weinstein is facing six new sexual assault charges, prosecutors in Los Angeles have announced. The 68-year-old convicted rapist and imprisoned film mogul was charged with three additional forcible rape felonies and three forcible oral copulation charges over alleged incidents between 2004 and 2010 in Beverly Hills. He is already serving a 23-year prison sentence for rape after a high-profile New York trial.

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