Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 27 June 2023

The Week’s daily digest of the news agenda, published at 8am

1. Putin denounces rebellion

Vladimir Putin said Russia showed “unity” in the face of a “treacherous” rebellion that was “doomed to fail”. In an unscheduled late night televised address, Putin said: “Any blackmail or way to bring confusion to Russia is doomed to failure … I made steps to avoid large-scale bloodshed.” His short speech was “full of vitriol”, said the BBC, while The Guardian added that the president was “visibly angry”. In a statement on Telegram, Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin said the short-lived rebellion was a response to government plans to take direct control of the mercenary group.

Prigozhin’s revolt: is Russia really heading for ‘sudden collapse’?

2. Landmark cricket racism report

A landmark report has found that English cricket suffers from “widespread and deep-rooted” racism, sexism, elitism and class-based discrimination at all levels of the sport. Following a two-year investigation, the Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket has made 44 recommendations, including that the England and Wales Cricket Board makes an unreserved public apology for its failings. The inquiry collected evidence from more than 4,000 people and “found that the sort of discrimination and abuse faced by Yorkshire cricketer Azeem Rafiq was widespread”, said Sky News.

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Nov 21: Racism in cricket: Yorkshire’s shame and the sport’s diversity problem

3. Tape might dent Trump defence

An audio recording of a 2021 meeting in New Jersey, where President Donald Trump discussed holding secret documents he did not declassify has been obtained by CNN. In the recording, the former president is heard riffling through papers and saying: “This is highly confidential.” His statements on the audio recording, “could undercut the former president’s claims… that he did not have any documents with him”, said the outlet. Trump has pleaded not guilty to federal charges of mishandling sensitive files.

Biden’s dilemma: should he pardon Trump?

4. Tory candidate accused of assault

A woman has accused Conservative London mayoral candidate Daniel Korski of groping her in Downing Street. Writing in the Daily Mail, Daisy Goodwin, a TV producer, said that Korski had put his hand on her breast during a meeting at Downing Street. At the time he was a special adviser to David Cameron. “I suppose legally his action could be called sexual assault”, she wrote. A spokesperson for Korski said: “In the strongest possible terms, Dan categorically denies any allegation of inappropriate behaviour whatsoever.”

5. Hunt accused Bank of failures

Jeremy Hunt has “finally admitted” that there were flaws in the Bank of England’s economic forecasting after it “failed to get a grip on runaway inflation”, said The Telegraph. “The Bank of England governor himself has been very open about the fact that their inflation forecasting has not been accurate,” the chancellor told MPs. He said that the bank is “conducting an independent review, to see how they can do it better”. Andrew Bailey, the Bank’s Governor, has admitted that it was taking “a lot longer than we expected” for inflation to come down.

Who will get the blame for UK mortgage misery?

6. June set to break record

This June is expected to be the hottest on record in the UK, with temperatures more than 1C warmer so far than the previous record set as far back as 1940. Provisional data from the Met Office shows an average maximum daily temperature of 21.6C up to and including Sunday 25 June, which saw conditions reach 32.2C for the second time this month. This is “comfortably ahead” of the 20.5 maximum daily average recorded 83 years ago, said the i news site.

7. Is WFH causing sickness?

A minister has claimed that anxiety caused by social media and the physical strain of working from home at unsuitable tables have contributed to a dramatic rise in people suffering long-term sickness. Mel Stride, the work and pensions secretary, said that the mental health impact of the pandemic had also contributed to the issue. A record 2.5 million people are not working because of long-term sickness, an increase of 400,000 since the pandemic, reported The Times.

Britain’s missing workers

8. Rwanda policy expense estimated

The cost of sending a single asylum seeker to Rwanda could be nearly £170,000, according to government analysis. A Home Office source said the figure is based on a “theoretical exercise on costs under the bill”. The long-awaited “impact assessment” of the illegal migration bill comes at the start of a “pivotal week for the government’s flagship policy”, said The Guardian, as peers have already threatened to derail the bill when it returns to the upper chamber on Wednesday.

The cost of housing asylum seekers examined

9. School uniform costs examined

Parents still have to spend hundreds of pounds on school uniform despite rules meant to lower the costs. The Children’s Society, which quizzed 2,000 parents across the UK in May about their annual uniform costs, found parents spent on average £422 a year on secondary and £287 on primary uniforms. The charity said it was “alarming” that parents were still having to spend “exorbitant” amounts on school uniforms. The government said it is working to ensure uniform costs are “reasonable”.

10. Bragg attacks BBC portrayals

The BBC represents white working-class people as “miserable, broke or in despair”, said Melvyn Bragg. “People like this, they worked so hard . . . they came up from the mines [and] factories,” the broadcaster, and son of Cumbrian publicans, told the Radio Times. “And what did they do? They created a huge culture. That was completely unrecognised.” He added that “the BBC is probably to blame, because they only want working-class people if they are miserable”.

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