Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 10 August 2021

The Week’s daily digest of the news agenda, published at 8am

1

Prince Andrew in abuse lawsuit

A lawsuit has been filed in the US accusing Prince Andrew of sexually abusing Virginia Giuffre when she was 17-years-old. The complainant also states that she was a victim of billionaire financier and convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein. She alleges that the Duke of York and his representatives have rejected requests to provide “whatever facts, context or explanation he might have, and to explore alternative dispute resolution approaches”. Prince Andrew has consistently denied her claims.

2

A-level ‘grade inflation’ expected

Almost half of today’s A-level results are expected to be A*s or As in a second year of “rampant grade inflation”, The Times reports. Around 19% of the qualifications are likely to be graded A* this year, while a further 30% are expected to be given A grades. Exams were scrapped in January due to school closures caused by the pandemic and replaced with teacher-assessed grades moderated by the regulator, Ofqual.

3

Cameron made $10m from Greensill

David Cameron made around $10m (£7.2m) working part-time for Greensill Capital before the firm’s collapse earlier this year, it has emerged. Documents seen by BBC Panorama show the former prime minister had agreed to receive around £3.29m for his Greensill shares in 2019. He was also paid a £720,000 a year salary for his part-time role. The Daily Mirror says “greedy, grasping” Cameron “imposed austerity on us while quietly banking a £7m fortune”. Cameron’s spokesperson said: “He acted in good faith at all times and there was no wrongdoing in any of the actions he took.”

4

Greek PM apologises over fires

The prime minister of Greece has apologised for failures in tackling the wildfires currently tearing across the country. “We may have done what was humanly possible, but in many cases it was not enough,” said Kyriakos Mitsotakis as hundreds of firefighters battled huge blazes that have forced thousands of people to flee their homes. He said burnt areas would be reforested with more fire-resistant trees and compensation would be paid from a €500m (£424m) emergency relief fund.

5

Tower Bridge stuck open

Tower Bridge is stuck open, causing major traffic problems in central London. The landmark bridge became jammed yesterday after it opened to allow a large wooden tall ship to sail through. City of London Police said the 127-year-old crossing is closed “due to technical failure”, while drivers and pedestrians have been warned to avoid the area. The Victorian bridge is used by about 40,000 people and 21,000 vehicles each day.

6

Death puts spotlight on child marriage

The UN has condemned the practice of child marriage in Zimbabwe following the death of a 14-year-old girl after she gave birth at a church shrine. The UN in Zimbabwe said it “notes with deep concern and condemns strongly” the circumstances leading to the death of Memory Machaya. CNN says the Zimbabwean government has “traditionally turned a blind eye” to the practice of child marriage.

7

‘Human shield’ for condemned alpaca

Supporters of Geronimo the alpaca have said the animal should be given a pioneering new test which will “almost certainly” show he does not have bovine tuberculosis. Friends, family and supporters are to form a “human shield” around the farm where the alpaca lives, with a team expected to arrive to euthanise the animal. Ministers insist that Geronimo, who has twice tested positive for bovine tuberculosis, must be put down.

8

Deliveroo shares up as Germans buy in

Deliveroo stocks have soared after a £300m stake in the takeaway app was bought by a German rival. Shares in Deliveroo rose by 11% after the business disclosed that a 5.09% holding had been built up by Delivery Hero, a £27bn competitor based in Berlin. Niklas Oestberg, Delivery Hero’s chief executive, said he had invested in Deliveroo because it was “undervalued” and had been “oversold at IPO”.

9

New leader in airport awards

Singapore’s Changi Airport has been knocked from top place in the World Airport Awards. Doha’s Hamad International Airport has taken top spot in the “World’s Best Airport” category. Airports in Europe and Asia dominated the 2021 gongs. Japan was voted best-rated country overall, with three airports in the top 10, including both of Tokyo’s airports. Meanwhile, Istanbul Airport was singled out as “Most Improved”.

10

‘Don’t call it curry’, food influencer says

A food blogger has argued that the word “curry” is rooted in colonialism and should be scrapped. Instagram star Chaheti Bansal said: “There’s a saying that the food in India changes every 100km and yet we’re still using this umbrella term popularised by white people who couldn’t be bothered to learn the actual names of our dishes.” Cyrus Todiwala, the Indian celebrity chef, said that the word was not racist, but added that it remained “one of the banes of my life in Britain”.

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