Tuesday 29 December
News BRiefing VIDEO
- Ghislaine Maxwell denied $28.5m bail in sex crime case
- NHS boss Sir Simon Stevens issues warning as hospital admissions top first peak
- Spain to keep registry of those who refuse to get Covid-19 vaccine
- Suspect detained in Shanghai poisoning of Netflix producer & ‘Game of Thrones’ games developer, Yoozoo billionaire Lin Qi
- Lebanese blame ‘brutal’ Syrian regime over refugee attack
- India reports six cases of new UK variant of coronavirus
- India farm protesters damage over 1,500 telecom towers
- House Passes Higher Pandemic Relief, Overrides Trump Defense Veto
- Hardline Tory Brexiters signal support for EU trade deal
- Japan developing wooden satellites to cut space junk
- Wall Street hits record high after Trump signs stimulus bill
- A historic oil price collapse, with worries headed into 2021
- Desire for escapism fuels rise in book and audiobook sales
- Australia v India: Tourists win second Test by eight wickets
Ghislaine Maxwell denied $28.5m bail in sex crime case
BBC says a US judge has turned down a $28.5m bail package by British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell who is awaiting trial on sex crime charges.
The New York ruling said the suspect, 59, poses a flight risk and the offer did not assure her appearance at future hearings.
She is accused of helping the convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein groom young girls, which she denies.
NHS boss Sir Simon Stevens issues warning as hospital admissions top first peak
Sky News says the country is “back in the eye of the storm”, according to the head of the NHS, with the number of patients being treated for Covid-19 in England’s hospitals overtaking the peak back in April.
Figures from NHS England have revealed that there were 20,426 patients being treated in hospitals as of 8 am on Monday, compared with the 18,974 patients recorded on 12 April.
Spain to keep registry of those who refuse to get Covid-19 vaccine
France24 says Spain will set up a registry of people who refuse to be vaccinated against the coronavirus and share it with other EU member states, although it will not be made public, Health Minister Salvador Illa said.
“What will be done is a registry, which will be shared with our European partners… of those people who have been offered it and have simply rejected it,” he said.
“It is not a document which will be made public and it will be done with the utmost respect for data protection,” he added, noting that employers or members of the general public would not have access to it.
Suspect detained in Shanghai poisoning of Netflix producer & ‘Game of Thrones’ games developer, Yoozoo billionaire Lin Qi
RT News says Lin Qi, a Chinese video game tycoon who was co-producing a new Netflix sci-fi series with the ‘Game of Thrones’ showrunners, died from alleged poisoning on Friday. Shanghai police now say they’ve detained a suspect, a co-worker.
The 39-year-old, who is the founder of Chinese entertainment company Yoozoo, was rushed to hospital in Shanghai on December 17 after he felt unwell; he died a week later. Local media have speculated that his tea had been spiked after a dispute among the executives.
Lebanese blame ‘brutal’ Syrian regime over refugee attack
Arab News says an arson attack that destroyed a Syrian refugee camp in northern Lebanon has led to widespread criticism of the Assad regime for failing to help or repatriate its displaced citizens.
In the wake of the attack that forced 370 people to flee the camp, Lebanese political leaders accused the Syrian regime of intimidating refugees in the country and deliberately hindering their return.
India reports six cases of new UK variant of coronavirus
Aljazeera says Indian health authorities say they found six people who had returned from Britain in recent weeks positive for the new, more infectious strain of the coronavirus that has prompted a wave of panic and border closures around the world.
All six patients have been kept in isolation, India’s health ministry said in a statement on Tuesday. “Their close contacts have also been put under quarantine,” the statement said.
India farm protesters damage over 1,500 telecom towers
TRT World says the grain-growing state of Punjab has asked police to crack down on farmers and sympathisers vandalising hundreds of telecommunication masts as they intensify their weeks-long protests against farm deregulation.
Protesters have attacked more than 1,500 masts of companies such as oil-to-groceries conglomerate Reliance Industries Ltd that they believe have profited from the farm laws at their expense
House Passes Higher Pandemic Relief, Overrides Trump Defense Veto
VOA says the House of Representatives has passed higher pandemic relief payments to Americans, meeting Donald Trump’s demand for $2,000 COVID-19 relief checks, and it passed an override of Trump’s veto of a multibillion-dollar bill funding the country’s defence programs.
The House interrupted its usual Christmas break to return to work to pass the measures Monday, less than a week before a new Congress is to be sworn into office.
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- Hermit Nashville Bomber – American Terrorist wanted to be famous on Christmas
- German passengers sue government over €94m repatriation bill
- South Africa bans alcohol sales, tightens curfew to fight COVID surge
- Philippines expands travel ban to limit spread of new COVID-19 virus strain
- Iran says Pfizer vaccine batch expected from US benefactors
Hermit Nashville Bomber – American Terrorist wanted to be famous on Christmas
The loner Nashville bomber has been identified Tenessee born Anthony Quinn Warner, described as a ‘loner’ and ‘hermit’ by those who knew him. The Domestic American Terrorist was motivated by wanting to be famous, more ‘famous than Christmas’.Anthony Quinn Warner, a 63-year-old, of Antioch, Tennessee is described by one neighbour as a loner, died when his recreational vehicle (RV) exploded early Christmas morning In Nashville – WTX News
German passengers sue government over €94m repatriation bill
Germans flown home at the start of the coronavirus pandemic in a large scale repatriation effort have initiated legal proceedings against the government after being billed for their travel costs. – Euronews
South Africa bans alcohol sales, tightens curfew to fight COVID surge
South Africa tightened coronavirus measures on Monday after the country reported more than 1 million infections since the outbreak began in March.
“Apart from permitted workers and for medical and security emergencies, nobody, and that means nobody, is allowed outside their place of residence during curfew,” he said. – Africanews
Iran says Pfizer vaccine batch expected from US benefactors
An unidentified group of US-based philanthropists plans to send 150,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine to Iran in the coming weeks, Iranian media reported Monday, in a step that could bring the hardest-hit country in the Middle East closer to inoculating its citizens against the coronavirus. – Arab News