Brief. Me Better Faster July 24, 2021 3:42 am
LIVE NEWS TODAY
Covid-variant vaccines fast-tracked with more investment
BBC News says the UK government is pledging extra money to fast-track vaccines that fight new variants of coronavirus.
Existing vaccines still protect against variants such as those identified in Kent and South Africa – but experts say it is also vital to stay a step ahead of a virus that keeps mutating.
The concern is about future variants that might escape this immunity.
Two former British soldiers acquitted of murdering IRA leader Joe McCann
RT News says two former British Army paratroopers accused of murdering an Official IRA commander have been acquitted after prosecutors failed to provide further evidence against them and the trial collapsed.
Joe McCann, 24, was unarmed when he was shot dead by paratroopers as he tried to evade arrest by a plainclothes police officer in Belfast in 1972.
The accused, identified only as Soldiers A and C, have admitted firing at McCann, but claim they acted within the law.
Global condemnation of Colombia’s use of ‘excessive force’ against protesters
France24 says the international community decried what the UN described as an “excessive use of force” by security officers in Colombia after numerous deaths during days of anti-government protests.
The United Nations, United States, European Union and rights bodies joined in the criticism after official data showed 19 people were killed and 846 injured in running clashes with the security forces.
Syria intercepts Israel attacks near Latakia by the Mediterranean
Aljazeera says Syrian air defenses have intercepted an Israeli attack on several areas in northwestern Syria, including the port city of Latakia along the Mediterranean coast, state media said.
The Israeli dawn attack on Wednesday also hit the town of Hifa, east of Latakia, and Masyaf in Hama province.
A civilian plastics factory was hit in Latakia city. There has been 1 reported death and 6 injures so far.
Netanyahu’s deadline to form government expires, rivals eyed
Arab News says Benjamin Netanyahu’s deadline for forming a new Israeli government expired early on Wednesday, with the country’s longest-serving prime minister failing to break the political deadlock.
There was also no guarantee that, after the conservative incumbent was unable to assemble a new coalition, parties outside his caretaker government could bridge their differences and unseat him.
Convicted US ex-cop files petition for new trial in Floyd death
TRT World says Derek Chauvin has asked for a new trial on claims of jury and prosecution misconduct.
The 45-year-old – who knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes in Minneapolis – faces up to 40 years in prison after being found guilty last month.
Chauvin’s attorney Eric Nelson argued that his client did not get a fair trial due to publicity around the case, court and prosecution errors, as well as “race-based pressure” on the jury.
Facebook Oversight Panel to Rule on Trump Ban
VOA says Facebook’s quasi-independent Oversight Board is set to announce Wednesday whether FB was correct to indefinitely prohibit Donald Trump from posting to his Facebook and Instagram accounts.
The board is made up of 20 members, including legal scholars, human rights experts, and journalists. A panel of five members prepares a decision, which must be approved by a majority of the full board, and which Facebook is then required to implement unless the action could violate the law.
LIVE NEWS UPDATES
- Covid-variant vaccines fast-tracked with more investment
- Global condemnation of Colombia’s use of ‘excessive force’ against protesters
- Syria intercepts Israel attacks near Latakia by the Mediterranean
- Convicted US ex-cop files petition for new trial in Floyd death
‘End of witch hunt’ – UK travel list announcement
Several of Wednesday’s front pages carry the story of the ‘witch hunt’ against soldiers who served in Northern Ireland.
The Daily Telegraph calls for the ‘witch hunt’ of soldiers who served in Northern Ireland to stop. The paper says campaigners and military leaders have demanded an end to prosecutions after the latest trials collapsed. Two men who served were acquitted on Tuesday of the murder of an IRA man 50 years ago. – The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Express leads with the same story. The paper says “End the cruel hunting of all our veterans”, quoting a former head of the Royal Navy. The paper says the two former soldiers walked free from court on Tuesday “after five years of hell.” – The Daily Express
The i newspaper leads with holiday destinations with the least amount of risk to tourists and the UK, and says the UK government will reveal the official list on Friday. The paper says Portugal, the Canary Islands, Crete, Corfu, Rhodes, Kos, Zante, Malta, Israel, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Iceland and the US Virgin Islands are all expected to go on the “green list” for quarantine-free travel. – The i
The Times says a third vaccine is going to be offered to everyone over 50 in the autumn. The paper says the booster is an attempt to eradicate the threat of Covid entirely by Christmas, it might be offered at the same time as the annual flu jab. The paper suggests the jab will only be given to the over-50s and those who are at higher risk. – The Times
YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
A spat over Covid vaccine doses has erupted between the European Union and the UK threatens to have far reaching implications over coronavirus jab disruption.
Brussels demanded access to AstraZeneca vaccines manufactured in UK plants to make up for a shortfall after the pharmaceutical giant said it would have to cut the amount of doses delivered to the bloc by the end of March.
What do we know about the dispute? And what potential implications could the rumbling dispute have on future Covid vaccine rollouts? – (ITV)
Recent and upcoming changes
Restrictions are easing across the UK.
Step 1 of the roadmap out of lockdown has begun. Shielding ends on 31 March.
People will be asked to ‘Stay Local’ from 2 April. A timetable for further lockdown easing from 5 April is on GOV.SCOT.
The stay at home restriction was lifted on 13 March. Read about the rules on GOV.WALES.
In Northern Ireland
The next review will happen on or before 15 April. You can read the guidance on current restrictions on nidirect.
latest Covid-19 news
For the latest Covid-19 news visit the UK governement website