Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Tuesday 11 Aug 2020

1. Trump hurried out of briefing after shooting

A Secret Service agent ushered Donald Trump out of a news briefing after shots were fired outside the White House last night. As the US president was speaking as the agent walked on stage and whispered in his ear. Trump said “oh” and journalists asked “what’s happening?” as he left the room. The president returned nine minutes later to say the situation was under control and a man had been shot.

2. Lebanon’s government resigns as public anger mounts

Hassan Diab, the Lebanese prime minister, and his entire government has quit following the Beirut port explosion last week. Diab announced the mass resignation after more than a third of ministers quit their posts, forcing him to act. The BBC says anger is growing after the explosion that devastated parts of Beirut and left more than 200 people dead.

Instant Opinion: ‘Lebanon’s worst enemy is its own government’

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3. Experts say that older pupils transmit virus like adults

Government plans to get children back to school has been dealt a blow after official government research found that secondary school pupils spread Covid-19 as easily as adults. After Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said that there was little risk in government plans for all children to return to the classroom next month, scientists at Public Health England said that tougher rules are likely to be needed for older children.

Will reopened schools spread coronavirus?

4. Planet reaches milestone of 20m Covid-19 cases

The World Health Organization has spoken of “pain and suffering” as the world reached the milestone of 20 million confirmed Covid-19 cases and neared 750,000 deaths globally. According to data from Johns Hopkins University, the current rise in cases is powered by Latin America, the Caribbean and Asia, where cases are growing again.

5. Protester dies during fresh clashes in Belarus

Violence has broken out for a second night in Belarus following Sunday’s disputed presidential elections. Police in the capital, Minsk, fired rubber bullets and one demonstrator died when an explosive device detonated in his hands. President Alexander Lukashenko claimed to have won 80% of the vote, but his main rival, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, refused to accept the results. There had been claims of vote-rigging in the poll.

What’s going on in Belarus?

6. Test-and-trace staff may knock on your door

A new report has found that NHS Test and Trace staff are successfully reaching only one contact each a month. The Independent Sage group of scientists says the new centralised system has thousands of operatives “sitting at home, many doing almost nothing for weeks on end”. As a result, says the Daily Mail, those who fail to answer calls from the service may now face a knock on the door.

What we need to do to make track-and-trace work

7. Flooding expected as storms hit heatwave Britain

The Environment Agency says isolated flooding is possible across parts of England over the next few days as the Met Office issues thunderstorm warnings for most of the UK until Thursday. The storms will follow days of sizzling heatwave conditions. Flash flooding has already left parts of the Welsh town of Aberystwyth under water.

8. ‘Abuser’ Andrew not a fairytale prince, says Epstein victim

One of Jeffrey Epstein’s victims has accused the Duke of York of being an abuser rather than a storybook prince. In a forthcoming documentary, Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who was photographed with Prince Andrew and Ghislaine Maxwell in London in 2001, says: “Prince Andrew is not the prince from the fairytale stories you read. Andrew deserves to be outed, he deserves to be held accountable, he is an abuser.”

Prince Andrew ‘used Spitting Image puppet of himself’ to assault Virginia Roberts Giuffre

9. Sunak hails ‘amazing’ eat-out-to-help-out figures

Restaurant customers used the “eat out to help out” scheme more than 10.5m times in its first week, according to the Treasury. The chancellor, Rishi Sunak, described the figures as “amazing”. Meanwhile, retail sales rose again in July, as UK consumer spending approached levels last seen before the coronavirus pandemic. Total retail sales were up by 3.2% in July compared with the same month a year ago.

Eat Out to Help Out: Monday to Wednesday is ‘new weekend’ this August

10. Former McDonald’s boss faces $40m legal action

Steve Easterbrook, the former chief executive of McDonald’s, is being sued by the fast food giant over allegations that he had sexual relationships with three employees. British-born Easterbrook, who was sacked for having an affair with a colleague, faces legal action to reclaim the $40m payoff that the chain handed him. Court documents say that “dozens” of sexually explicit pictures and videos were sent from his work email account to a personal account.

Why McDonald’s has fired its chief executive Steve Easterbrook

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