Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 9 November 2021

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

1

Johnson ‘leading party through sewers’

Boris Johnson is facing calls from Conservative MPs to show leadership and apologise for attempting to block the suspension of Owen Paterson. Mark Harper, a Tory MP and former chief whip, told the Commons: “Politics is a team effort. When the captain gets their team into trouble by getting something wrong, they should apologise to them in the House.” Meanwhile, Keir Starmer accused Johnson of leading the Conservatives “through the sewers“, adding that ”the stench lingers”.

2

Man rescued after cave ordeal

Emergency services have said a man rescued from a cave system in the Brecon Beacons after getting injured and trapped for two days is doing “remarkably well”. More than 240 people and at least eight cave rescue teams were involved in the operation. The man, who is in his 40s, was taken to hospital after his 54-hour ordeal came to an end. A rescuer said the man was “an experienced, fit caver”, adding that the accident “was a matter of putting his foot in the wrong place”.

3

Saudis and China blamed for Cop26 stalemate

China and Saudi Arabia are being blamed for blocking progress towards a deal at Cop26. The Times said fingers are being pointed at the two nations because they are “refusing to accept that they must be fully transparent about their greenhouse gas emissions”. The dispute is delaying progress on other planks of a deal, including rules on establishing a global market for carbon offsetting. David King, a former UK government chief scientific adviser, suggested that the UN should create a system for “verifying that countries were fulfilling” their climate pledges, the paper added.

4

Best bedtime for heart revealed

Going to bed between 10pm and 11pm reduces the risk of heart disease, a new study has found. Researchers at the University of Exeter studied 88,000 volunteers and found that people who fell asleep during that hour-long window had lower rates of heart disease compared with those with earlier or later bedtimes. The experts believe synchronising sleep to match our internal body clock may explain the reduced risk of heart attacks and strokes.

5

Deaths data ‘strengthens’ case for jabs

More than 11,000 people have caught Covid-19 and died after being admitted to NHS hospitals for other ailments, according to The Telegraph. Hospital data shows that thousands of patients who went to hospital to be treated for other illnesses “probably” or “definitely” caught the virus during their stay and subsequently died. Jeremy Hunt, the Conservative chair of the health and social care select committee, said the news “surely strengthens the case for mandatory vaccination for frontline healthcare staff”.

6

India accuses Pakistan of murder

India has accused the Pakistani navy of murder following the death of a 32-year-old fisherman on Saturday. A senior Indian police official told CNN that the incident occurred on a fishing boat that was allegedly fired upon by maritime forces. India has summoned a senior Pakistani diplomat over the alleged killing and there are fears the incident could lead to a surge in diplomatic tensions.

7

Windsor MP may be forced out

A Conservative MP is facing bankruptcy proceedings over unpaid taxes that could result in him having to step down. Court records show a petition for bankruptcy has been filed against Adam Afriyie, who has represented Windsor since 2005. Under parliamentary rules, sitting MPs who are declared bankrupt have to step aside. Afriyie, whose entry in the latest register of MPs’ financial interests reads “nil”, said: “I will of course pay any tax that is due.”

8

Military to receive consent training

Every soldier and officer will receive sexual consent training after the head of the army said the military was “not standing still” when it comes to tackling culture and conduct problems. General Mark Carleton-Smith and Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said they had a “full and frank discussion” about a range of issues, including “how the army was only as good as the people who served in it and its leadership”, The Times said. No senior female army personnel were present at the meeting.

9

Boy sentenced over decapitation attempt

A schoolboy has been sentenced to life in prison after luring a 12-year-old friend to a woodland and trying to decapitate him because he believed that he was a “snitch”. Marcel Grzeszcz, 15, was sentenced for stabbing Roberts Buncis more than 70 times and trying to cut off his head, hand and fingers in Fishtoft, Lincolnshire, in December. He had previously been forced to leave his primary school after being caught with a knife and was expelled from secondary school for drug dealing.

10

Gove may rip up housing targets

Michael Gove has hinted that he will tear up housing targets following a Tory backlash. The housing secretary said that he is looking at how “housing need” is calculated after more than 60 Tory MPs signed a letter asking that the upcoming Planning Bill be given pre-legislative scrutiny. The Telegraph said that the news comes after Boris Johnson signalled an about-turn on planning reforms, saying that “beautiful” homes should in future only be built “on brownfield sites in places where homes make sense”.

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