Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 14 May 2022

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

1

‘Golden era’ of cheap food ‘over’

Former Sainsbury’s boss Justin King has warned households that the UK’s “golden era” of cheap food is over. “We have been perhaps through a golden era,” said King, who sits on the board of Marks & Spencer. “I suspect what we will see is a higher proportion, across the piece, spent on food for the longer term.” Two in five adults are buying less food when they go shopping, according to the Office for National Statistics.

2

US condemns funeral attack

The White House has issued a statement condemning Israeli forces for their attack on the funeral procession in Jerusalem of a Palestinian American journalist who was shot and killed this week. TV cameras captured Israeli police storming Shireen Abu Aqleh’s funeral procession. The group carrying her coffin were backed against a wall and almost dropped the casket. An eye-witness of Abu Aqleh’s death earlier this week said she was shot by Israeli forces in an “assassination”.

3

Musk puts Twitter purchase on hold

Elon Musk has put his takeover of Twitter “temporarily on hold” over concerns about the number of spam and fake accounts on the social media platform. The billionaire said that the deal was being held “pending details supporting” a calculation that the number of fake accounts on the platform represents under 5% of its 229m users. The FT said the development raises fresh doubt over whether the Tesla chief executive will complete the $44bn deal.

4

Govt plans first Rwanda resettlement

The government has told 50 migrants that they will be the first to be sent to Rwanda as part of the government’s resettlement policy. Announcing the development to the Daily Mail, Boris Johnson said he expected a lot of legal opposition but insisted the government would “dig in for the fight”. Johnson said 50 “notices of intent” have now been issued and the recipients will have between seven and 14 days to lodge objections. The Rwanda resettlement plan has been criticised by refugee charities, church figures, opposition parties and Tory backbenchers.

5

Kim announces Covid ‘disaster’

Kim Jong-un has declared North Korea’s first Covid-19 outbreak a “great disaster” as it reported 21 more deaths. North Korea said that a total of 27 people have died and 524,440 fell ill amid a rapid spread of fever since late April. The nation has so far shunned offers of Covid vaccines from China and Russia, and from the World Health Organization’s Covax scheme, apparently because administering the jabs would require outside monitoring, said The Guardian.

6

Civil servants may strike

The main civil service union has warned of strike action over Boris Johnson’s “P&O-style” approach to cutting 91,000 Whitehall jobs. Boris Johnson plans to cut one in five civil service jobs adds to anger over pay increases less than half of the current 7% rate of inflation and the Cabinet Office drive to get staff back into the office. Defending the job cuts, the minister for Brexit opportunities, Jacob Rees-Mogg, said pre-Brexit vote staff levels were “reasonable”.

7

Horse rider sues dog owner

A dog owner is facing a £5m claim from a horse rider who now has to use a wheelchair after the dog frightened his horse on a beach. Lourens Koetsier suffered a severe spinal injury after he was thrown while on a guided ride along the beach in Pembrokeshire, Wales. The 63-year-old financial adviser told the High Court that the accident occured when a West Highland terrier, called Max, ran under the horse. Max’s owner denied liability, saying that there is no reason to blame his “small, elderly and gentle” Westie for the accident.

8

William gives damehood to James

Prince William has personally given bowel cancer awareness champion Deborah James her damehood during a visit to her family home in Surrey. The podcaster said she was “utterly honoured” that Prince William had joined her family for afternoon tea and champagne. The 40-year-old has been moved to hospice-at-home care to treat her terminal bowel cancer after telling followers she does not know “how long I’ve got left”.

9

Vogue backs down on pub threat

Vogue magazine has backed down on a plan to sue a pub called Vogue in the Cornish village of Vogue. The fashion magazine sent a cease and desist letter to The Star Inn at Vogue, based in a rural hamlet called Vogue, arguing that “the name which you are using is going to cause problems because as far as the general public is concerned a connection between your business and ours is likely to be inferred”. However, after an outcry from residents, the magazine has u-turned.

10

Hot week for the UK

Much of Britain can expect glorious sunshine in the coming week as temperatures climb to a possible high of 27C. Saturday could be “16-19C widely – with 24C the possible high in the south-east”, said Met Office meteorologist Aidan McGivern. Warm air from north Africa is expected to bring above-average temperatures for May to most places in the UK over the next week. However, the warm weather will be broken up with potentially heavy or thundery showers.

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