Daily News Briefing: UK’s 35,383 cases - Russian cyber attack - Tory Minister calls UNICEF's UK grants ‘stunts’

Daily News Briefing: UK’s 35,383 cases - Russian cyber attack - Tory Minister calls UNICEF's UK grants ‘stunts’

Friday 18 December

BRIEF – ME! – DAILY NEWS BRIEFING

Friday 18 December 2020 News Briefing -As of 6:30 am (GMT), these are the global active Covid-19  numbers.

Global COVID-19 UPDATE

Coronavirus Cases: 75,299,629

Deaths: 1,668,691

Recovered: 52,869,567

News Briefing Video roundup

  • COVID-19: UK reports 35,383 more daily coronavirus cases and further 532 deaths
  • Jacob Rees-Mogg under fire for dismissing Unicef’s UK grants as stunt
  • UK, EU leaders pessimistic about last-minute Brexit trade deal
  • Hundreds of Nigerian schoolboys released, local governor says
  • Turkey, Iraq draw closer over terror threat
  • Brazil sees spike in Covid-19 cases, deaths as vaccine mired in uncertainty
  • US, Biden Voice New Alarm About Cyberattack
  • Brexit trade talks buffeted by EU Covid relief state aid row
  • Openreach creating 5,300 new jobs to speed fibre rollout
  • Star Wars Boba Fett actor Jeremy Bulloch dies aged 75
  • Rashford double as Man Utd come from behind to beat Sheffield Utd

Brexit trade talks buffeted by EU Covid relief state aid row – FT

Openreach creating 5,300 new jobs to speed fibre rollout – BBC Business

Retail traders leave Wall Street for dust in 2020 stocks rally – Reuters

 COVID-19: Why latest slice of jobs support signals months of disruption – Sky News

COVID-19: UK reports 35,383 more daily coronavirus cases and further 532 deaths

Sky News says the UK has reported 35,383 more daily Covid-19 cases and an additional 532 deaths.

That’s a rise of 10,222 infections on the previous day; however, Thursday’s numbers also include a backlog of around 11,000 cases that hadn’t been reported earlier due to a technical delay in Wales.

The 532 deaths recorded in the latest 24-hour period marks a fall of 80 from the 612 deaths reported on Wednesday.

Read on

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Jacob Rees-Mogg under fire for dismissing Unicef’s UK grants as a stunt

The Guardian says Jacob Rees-Mogg has come under fire for accusing Unicef of a “political stunt” after the UN agency stepped in to help feed deprived children in the UK during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Commons leader hit out at Unicef, which is responsible for providing humanitarian aid to children worldwide, after it launched its first domestic emergency response in the UK in its more than 70-year history.

Read on

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UK, EU leaders pessimistic about last-minute Brexit trade deal

France24 says Britain and the EU struck a pessimistic tone in trade talks, with a spokesman for Boris Johnson saying it was “very likely” there would be no agreement unless the bloc changed its position “substantially”.

Just over two weeks before Britain finally leaves the bloc’s orbit, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was also downbeat, saying it would be “very challenging” to overcome the “big differences” that remained.

Read on

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Hundreds of Nigerian schoolboys released, local governor says

Aljazeera says hundreds of schoolboys who were kidnapped in northwestern Nigeria nearly a week ago have been released, a local official said late on Thursday, prompting joy and relief for families that had been praying for the boys’ safe return.

Katsina state Governor Aminu Bello Masari said in a televised interview with state channel NTA that 344 boys held in the Rugu Forest in neighbouring Zamfara state had been freed.

Read on

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Turkey, Iraq draw closer over terror threat

Arab News says Turkish President Erdogan hosted Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi on Thursday at the presidential palace.  

The sudden visit of top Iraqi officials to Turkey led to speculation about the challenges ahead in the region that brought the two countries together. 

Experts however drew attention to the shared security concerns between the two over the influence of autonomy-seeking Kurdish Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants as the main driver of this top-level meeting.

Read on

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Brazil sees spike in Covid-19 cases, deaths as vaccine mired in uncertainty

Yahoo!News says Brazil recorded over 1,000 new Covid-19 deaths for the first time in over three months on Thursday, as its Supreme Court ruled that vaccinations could be required in the South American country.

Brazil, which has the second deadliest outbreak in the world behind the US, reported 1,092 coronavirus deaths and 69,826 new confirmed cases, as a second wave that has been gaining steam since mid-November grows increasingly severe.

Read on

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US, Biden Voice New Alarm About Cyberattack

VOA says Donald Trump’s administration and Joe Biden both voiced new alarm about a wide intrusion into computer systems around the world that officials suspect was carried out by Russia.

The cybersecurity unit of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said the hack “poses a grave risk to the federal government and state, local, tribal and territorial governments, as well as critical infrastructure entities and other private sector organizations.”

Read on

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In Review: Tier 3 for Christmas

Yesterday it was announced most of England will be under teir 3 restrictions this Christmas. We review the media’s take on the news. 

“68% of England will be living under England’s toughest coronavirus restrictions this Christmas – equivalent to 38 million.

Around 30% of the population will be in tier two, while 2% will be in tier one, with the least strict level of curbs.” – WTX News

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Covid: Millions prepare for tougher restrictions amid rising cases – BBC News

UK coronavirus: cases rise 42% in a week as tier 3 rules widened and furlough extended – The Guardian

Confusion over Christmas rules as West Midlands set to stay in Tier 3 – Express and Star 

Tears and cheers from Tier-change winners and losers as ‘completely drained’ business owners put into Three say they are ‘devastated’ but Bristolians celebrate heading down to Two – Daily Mail

Christmas mixing could lead to Covid case ‘tsunami,’ health boss warns amid fears of third national lockdown – Evening Standard 

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Read the government’s statement on the new tiering information here

US panel recommends emergency approval of Moderna vaccine

A US panel of experts has voted to recommend emergency approval of Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine, paving the way for six million doses to start shipping as soon as this weekend. – TRT World

Macron tests positive for COVID-19 prompting EU leaders to isolate

Emmanuel Macron has tested positive for the coronavirus and will self-isolate for seven days, the Elysée Palace has announced. “The diagnosis was established following a RT-PCR test carried out as soon as the first symptoms appeared,” the president’s office said in a statement provided to Euronews. – Euronews

Nigeria’s fight for the return of the Benin Bronzes

As the Prussian Palace made its grand opening of a museum on Wednesday, the debate on the return of artifacts plundered from abroad has reached its boiling point.

The Humboldt Forum will exhibit 20,000 treasures from Africa, Asia and Oceania, mostly from the former colonies. – Africanews

Iran builds at underground nuclear facility amid US tensions

Iran has begun construction on a site at its underground nuclear facility at Fordo amid tensions with the US over its atomic program, satellite photos obtained Friday by The Associated Press show. – Arab News

China to start opening COVID-19 vaccination programme to general public

China plans to start opening its vaccination programme to members of the public in southwestern Sichuan province early next year, health officials said, despite the inoculations not yet receiving official approval. – CNA

‘Don’t go to Sydney’: Victoria issues warning after Covid outbreak grows – video

Victoria’s health minister has advised against travel to and from Sydney as the New South Wales government grapples with a rapidly evolving Covid-19 outbreak. ‘Don’t come from Sydney if you’re planning to come to Melbourne,’ he says. ‘Don’t go to Sydney if you’re planning to go to Sydney. It won’t be a holiday. It won’t be a Christmas.’ – The Guardian

Cultura

sports news

arts & ent

Man U v Sheffield

Rashford double as Man Utd come from behind to beat Sheffield Utd – Read on

Boba Fett

Star Wars Boba Fett actor Jeremy Bulloch dies aged 75 – Read on

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