Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Tuesday 14 Jul 2020

1. Second wave ‘could kill up to 120,000 Britons’

Britain must start “intense preparations” for a second wave of coronavirus that has the potential to kill as many as 120,000 people, according to health chiefs at the Academy of Medical Sciences. The experts warned that a resurgence of cases this winter could overwhelm the NHS. “The risk of this happening could be reduced if we take action immediately,” said Stephen Holgate, professor of immunopharmacology at the University of Southampton.

2. Military chiefs to send aircraft carrier to Far East

Military chiefs will base one of Britain’s new aircraft carriers in the Far East as tensions rise with China. HMS Queen Elizabeth will set sail on its maiden grand voyage as the centrepiece of a carrier strike group early next year, according to The Times. The £3.1bn vessel is expected to conduct military exercises with allies including the US and Japan.

3. Masks to become mandatory in English shops from 24 July

Masks will become mandatory in England's shops from 24 July, with a fine of up to £100 for those who refuse to comply. The announcement from Health Secretary Matt Hancock comes amid confusion about the government’s position, with Michael Gove suggesting on Sunday that people should just use their “common sense”. Labour said ministers’ response had been “slow and muddled”.

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4. Border checks after Brexit to cost companies £13 billion

Post-Brexit border checks will cost businesses £13bn, reports The Times. The government has confirmed that companies trading between the UK and the EU would have to fill in approximately 400 extra customs declarations a year, meaning an estimated 215m will have to be completed by businesses trading with the EU. The cost of completing a customs declaration ranges between £15 and £56.

5. California locks down again as Covid-19 cases spike

California has re-imposed restrictions on businesses and public spaces as coronavirus infections rise in America’s most populous state. Authorities have ordered an immediate pause on all indoor activities at restaurants, bars, entertainment venues, zoos and museums. In some counties, churches, gyms and hairdressers will also close. California has more than 330,000 coronavirus cases, with more than 7,000 deaths.

6. Victims’ commissioner says rape has been effectively decriminalised

The victims’ commissioner for England and Wales says rape has effectively been decriminalised due to a collapse in prosecutions that has allowed many offenders to escape justice. Dame Vera Baird QC says there has been a “catastrophic” decline in rape prosecutions, with no measures put in place to reverse it. She said: “In effect, what we are witnessing is the decriminalisation of rape.”

7. FBI says Ghislaine Maxwell wrapped phone in tin foil

Ghislaine Maxwell is “extremely skilled at living in hiding” and could “flee abroad and live comfortably for the rest of her life” if granted bail by the courts, according to prosecutors in the US. FBI officers discovered that the British socialite and friend of Jeffrey Epstein had wrapped her mobile phone in tin foil in a “seemingly misguided effort to evade detection” before her arrest.

8. The Queen was not told of dismissal of Australian PM

The Queen was not informed in advance about the 1975 dismissal of Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, newly released letters have revealed. In an event widely considered the most controversial in Australian political history, Whitlam’s government was removed by the Queen’s representative at the time, governor-general John Kerr. However, correspondence from the period shows Kerr wrote it was “better for Her Majesty not to know”.

9. White House bites back at Dr Anthony Fauci

The White House is targeting US infectious disease chief Dr Anthony Fauci, says the BBC. As Donald Trump’s administration becomes increasingly critical of Dr Fauci, it has shared an official list of allegedly erroneous comments. Meawhile, the US continues to see surges in coronavirus - there are more than 3.3 million cases confirmed and more than 135,000 deaths nationwide.

10. Naya Rivera used her last strength to save her son

A body discovered yesterday morning at Lake Piru has been identified as the former Glee actress Naya Rivera, says the Ventura county sheriff. Rivera used the last of her strength to save her four-year-old son before she died, he revealed. “She mustered enough energy to get her son back onto the boat, but not enough to save herself,” said the sheriff.

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