Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Tuesday 1 Aug 2017

1. Scaramucci fired as Trump's media chief

Anthony Scaramucci has been fired as US President Donald Trump's chief of communications after ten days in the job. The former Wall Street financier had been widely criticised for a foul-mouthed tirade to a reporter last week during which he abused two of his colleagues and threatened to sack more. Trump was said to be unhappy with his performance.

Scaramucci fired by Trump for 'inappropriate' comments

2. British Gas to raise electricity price by 12.5%

British Gas has announced it is increasing its electricity prices by 12.5% from 15 September but will keep gas prices the same. The rise, the first since 2013, will affect 3.1 million customers and take the average standard tariff dual-fuel bill to £1,120 – an increase of 7.3% or £76. Owner Centrica said it would protect its most "vulnerable customers" against the rise.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.


Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

British Gas raises electricity prices for millions of customers

3. Trump 'dictated son's Russia meeting statement'

Donald Trump reportedly dictated the press statement given by his son last month about his meeting with a Russian lawyer during the presidential campaign. A report in the Washington Post says the US President "personally dictated" the statement, which claimed Donald Trump Jr met Natalia Veselnitskaya to discuss a Russian adoption programme.

All the President's men: Who's who in the Trump-Russia saga

4. Labour MP hit in face with brick

A Labour MP has appealed for help in finding two men on a motorcycle who threw a brick in his face while he was out with party volunteers in Yardley Wood, Birmingham. Steve McCabe, who represents Birmingham Selly Oak, tweeted a picture of the two wearing helmets and asked for "names & addresses". Police are investigating.

5. US slaps sanctions on Venezuela's Nicolas Maduro

Washington has imposed financial sanctions on Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro after Sunday's election give his ruling socialist party almost unlimited power. US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the "illegitimate" vote showed Maduro had become a "dictator who disregards the will of the Venezuelan people".

Venezuela's Nicolas Maduro claims election victory

6. Doctors call for school breastfeeding lessons

The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health says schools should teach pupils about the importance of breastfeeding to help reverse the high rate of bottle-feeding. It also suggested employers support breastfeeding by giving mothers parental leave, feeding breaks and facilities for feeding or expressing milk.

7. Second day of trouble at HMP The Mount

Armed prisoners have taken over a wing of HMP The Mount during a second day of violence at the prison in Hertfordshire. Trouble broke out at the category C prison near the village of Bovingdon on Monday. The Ministry of Justice said riot-trained teams had been sent to the facility. There were also reports of disturbances at Erlestoke prison in Wiltshire, another category C facility.

8. Serena Williams calls for equal pay for black women

Tennis star Serena Williams has called for action over unequal pay in an article published in Fortune Magazine to mark Black Women's Equal Pay Day in the US. Williams says that black women are paid 37% less than men and 17% less than white women. "The cycles of poverty, discrimination, and sexism are much, much harder to break than the record for Grand Slam titles," she writes.

9. Marmite amnesty at London City Airport

London City Airport yesterday held a "Marmite amnesty" after it was revealed the product was being confiscated at security. People travelling with jars of Marmite in their hand luggage that exceeded the 100ml liquid limit were able to swap it for a 70g miniature. The airport said it may repeat the move if it proved successful.

10. Briefing: Chemical weapons, from Passchendaele to Syria

Europe fell silent this week to honour the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele, one of the bloodiest battles of World War One and the first in which mustard gas was used effectively as a weapon.

Chemical weapons gained notoriety during the conflict, not only for their lethality but for the manner in which the victims suffered before death.

The 1925 Geneva Protocol banned the use of all chemical weapons, but has not prevented their subsequent use.

Chemical weapons: A history from Passchendaele to Syria

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.