Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 14 June 2021
The Week’s daily digest of the news agenda, published at 8am
PM to delay reopening
The government will delay the lifting of all coronavirus restrictions in England beyond 21 June, reports the BBC. Government sources say Boris Johnson will confirm later today that current rules will remain for another four weeks after that date. The extension could trigger a Conservative backbench rebellion when it is put to the Commons - but a study has found that a four-week delay to easing all restrictions could prevent thousands of hospitalisations.
Bennett replaces Netanyahu
The new prime minister of Israel, Naftali Bennett, has vowed to unite the nation after his coalition government replaced Benjamin Netanyahu’s administration yesterday. Right-winer Bennett, who has ruled out a Palestinian state and wants Israel to maintain control over all the lands it occupies, will be prime minister for the first two years of a four-year term before handing over to Yair Lapid, a centrist.
Biden talked Putin with Queen
Joe Biden says the Queen asked him about Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping during their 45-minute talk over tea at Windsor Castle yesterday. Speaking on the tarmac at Heathrow airport before he flew out of the country, the US president said: “We had a long talk, she was very generous. I don’t think she’d be insulted, but she reminded me of my mother.”
GB News launch ‘a disaster’
Andrew Neill’s new TV channel GB News launched last night and has received largely negative reviews. Neill insists the “unwoke” channel will connect with the British public but The Independent said the first night was a “disaster”. While The Times acknowledged that despite a few “teething troubles” the channel “may yet bite”, The Guardian’s reviewer said the first night felt like “the furthest thing from appointment TV imaginable”, adding: “I give it a year.”
G7 leaders to share a billion vaccines
G7 leaders have pledged one billion Covid vaccine doses for poor countries as a “big step towards vaccinating the world”, Boris Johnson has announced. He said the countries were rejecting “selfish, nationalistic approaches”. As the G7 summit ended, the BBC said Johnson can feel that Britain has staged a “diplomatic show that was both competent and confident”. However, The New York Times described Johnson as a “clownish prime minister”.
More arrests in Nicaragua
Nicaraguan police have detained five more opposition figures, in what is being described as a crackdown on opponents of Daniel Ortega. The authorities say the detainees had incited foreign interference in Nicaragua’s affairs. The latest arrests bring to 12 the number of opposition figures held in recent days. Among them are four presidential hopefuls in November’s elections. Earlier this month, the US branded Ortega, a former left-wing revolutionary, “a dictator”.
Eriksen ‘was gone’ on pitch
The footballer Christian Eriksen was technically dead before he was resuscitated from cardiac arrest, Denmark’s team doctor has revealed. The player collapsed on the pitch during his team’s opening Euro 2020 match against Finland. “Well, what should I say? He was gone. And we did cardiac resuscitation and it was cardiac arrest. How close were we? I don't know,” said Morten Boesen. Eriksen is now said to be in a stable condition.
UK traffic exceeds pre-Covid levels
Traffic on British roads is now heavier than before the Covid pandemic due to a reluctance to use public transport and a sharp rise in internet shopping. Weekday traffic has reached 104% of pre-pandemic levels. On weekends traffic is even busier - on Sunday June 6, it reached 113% of the pre-pandemic level. Transport Technology Forum said that vans and trucks account for a greater proportion of journeys than before the pandemic, reflecting the rise in the delivery of shopping.
Boat home protests
London’s boat-dwellers protested on Sunday about plans they say will drive them out of their homes. They argue that new proposals from the Canal and River Trust, which manages some of London’s waterways, to trial “water safety zones” in Hackney and Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, will lead to a crippling reduction in mooring spaces. The trust says the measures are necessary because some sections of the river are overcrowded, leading to a rise in collisions in recent years.
Fan falls from stand at Wembley
A football fan was taken to hospital in a serious condition after falling from the stands at Wembley stadium during England’s match against Croatia yesterday. A spokesperson from the stadium said that the spectator fell just after kick-off and was given medical attention at the ground before being transferred to hospital. The Wembley spokesperson added: “We will continue to work with Uefa to ensure the matter is fully investigated.”