Brief. Me Better Faster July 25, 2021 8:11 am


Several ‘injured’ after fairground ride collapses in Northern Ireland


Met PC found guilty of neo-Nazi group membership

BBC News says a Met Police officer has been convicted of being a member of a banned neo-Nazi terrorist organisation.

Benjamin Hannam, of Enfield, north London, was found guilty of membership of the banned right-wing extremist group National Action (NA).

He was also convicted of lying on his Met Police application and having terror documents detailing knife combat and making explosive devices.

Read on

Brussels riot police use horses and water cannon to disperse crowd gathered in response to April Fools’ joke

The Independent says riot police in Belgium have used horses and water cannon to disperse crowds of revellers gathered in defiance of coronavirus rules, apparently in response to a fake festival created as an April Fools’ joke.

In recent weeks, some 70,000 people had expressed an interest on Facebook in attending a festival dubbed “La Boum”, which according to The Brussels Times had advertised “eight stages, a hundred DJs and zero coronavirus rules”.

Read on

Twenty years since the first gay marriages, the fight for rights in Europe goes on

Euronews says Amsterdam has marked 20 years since the world’s first gay marriages by floating an inflatable pink cake with candles spouting rainbow flames down the canal.

Twenty years ago on April 1, the city was host to a historic event when the mayor married four couples in the city hall and the Netherlands became the first country in the world to legally recognise same-sex marriage.

But,  according to Evelyne Paradis, Executive Director of ILGA, the emergence of authoritarian and populist politics and leaders in some European countries in the last few years has come hand-in-hand with pushback against LGBT rights.

Read on

Egypt opens Mideast’s biggest pharma city

Arab News says Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi inaugurated Egypt’s Gypto Pharma City, the largest pharmaceutical city in the Middle East.

Gypto Pharma, also known as Medicine City, has been set up to produce safe and effective medicines at reasonable prices, and will manufacture coronavirus remedies and drugs for chronic diseases. Production of some vitamins will also be given priority.

Read on

Taiwan train derailment: 36 killed in tunnel crash as rescuers report ‘no signs of life’

The Mirror says at least 36 people have been killed with many more injured after a train in Taiwan derailed inside a tunnel after striking a truck.

The country’s Transport Ministry said 36 people had “no signs of life” after the disaster in the east of Taiwan on Friday, while a further 72 are believed to be injured.

Rescuers are still battling to reach crushed carriages with the train understood to have been carrying 350 passengers.

Read on

Mother tried to save 9-year-old boy in California mass shooting

Aljazeera says one of the four fatal victims in a shooting rampage in suburban Los Angeles on Wednesday was a nine-year-old boy who may have died in his wounded mother’s arms as she tried in vain to save him, officials said.

“Our hearts today go out to the victims, and I’m here to tell you that we’re going to do everything in our power in the Orange County District Attorney’s office to get justice for these families,” Spitzer said. He said he will consider seeking the death penalty.

Read on

UN strongly condemns deaths of hundreds of protesters in Myanmar

TRT World says the UN Security Council has “strongly condemned” the deaths of hundreds of civilians in Myanmar, in a unanimous statement watered down by China after two days of tough negotiations.

“Members of the Security Council expressed deep concern at the rapidly deteriorating situation and strongly condemned the use of violence against peaceful protestors and the deaths of hundreds of civilians, including women and children,” read the statement, initiated by former colonial power Britain.

Read on


Live Updates

  • Met PC found guilty of neo-Nazi group membership
  • Brussels riot police use horses and water cannon to disperse crowd gathered in response to April Fools’ joke
  • Twenty years since the first gay marriages, the fight for rights in Europe goes on
  • Taiwan train derailment: 36 killed in tunnel crash as rescuers report ‘no signs of life’
News Briefing


Most of Friday’s front pages reports on the speculation about COVID passports and plans for foreign travel this summer. 


The Sun joins several papers in looking ahead to what summer has in store. Those wanting a quarantine-free holiday will have to swap Spain for Bahrain under new travel rules. The paper says as many European countries are experiencing a surge in casein are struggling to vaccinate quickly, the Gulf state is rapidly rolling out its vaccine programme.  

Read the full story on The Sun


The Times says “vaccination hotspots” such as the US, Maldives, Israel and Malta could be the first countries to open up for British holidaymakers this summer. Under a new traffic light system, travel to red-list countries will not be permitted, amber countries will mean people will need to quarantine for up to 10 days and green-list countries will not need any quarantine, the paper says. 

Read the full story on the Times


The Daily Mail says covid passport trials are set to begin early next month. Theatres and stadiums will be lined up to pilot the scheme under plans discussed by ministers, the paper says. Passports may be used in pubs, cinemas restaurants and nightclubs. 

However, the scheme is likely to be contentious, the Mail adds, some labelling such documents “divisive and discriminatory”.

Read the full story on the Daily Mail


The Daily Telegraph says the FA Cup final and the World Snooker Championships are among the events that could require coronavirus vaccine passports. 

Meanwhile, millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money have been invested into the Dutch vaccine factory at the centre of a European row over jab exports, the paper reports.

Read the full story on the Daily Telegraph


The Daily Mirror says “Get set for summer fun” as the paper reports that the entertainment and culture industries will receive £400m to bounce back from lockdown.

Read the full story on the Daily Mirror

News Briefing



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.

In England

Step 1 of the roadmap out of lockdown has begun. Shielding ends on 31 March.

In Scotland

People will be asked to ‘Stay Local’ from 2 April. A timetable for further lockdown easing from 5 April is on GOV.SCOT.

In Wales

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 

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