Quick Christmas/New Year News Wrap
Where did those couple of weeks go? If you’re anything like us you well and truly switched off over the Christmas/New Year period and the main priority was working out when you could have your next chocolate paddle pop. So we’ve put together a pain-free guide to some of the big stories to get you up to speed. You’re welcome.
IRAN IN TURMOIL
It’s in the middle of its biggest anti-government uprising for almost a decade. Reports say 1,000 have been arrested and more than 20 have been killed in protests. Sparked on 28 December by reports of price rises and corruption, the unrest is now about wider anti-government sentiment.
DOWNER BLEW WHISTLE ON US-RUSSIA TIES
Seems our High Commissioner to London, former Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, rang early alarm bells about the Trump Campaign’s ties to Russia. George Papadopoulos, a volunteer foreign affairs aide to the Trump campaign, was one of the first arrested in the official probe into any wrongdoing.
REPUBLIC HEART STARTER
Former PM Paul Keating lamented how little progress had been made on the Australian Republic front. PM Malcolm Turnbull, a former Republic campaigner, opined it might be a good one for a plebiscite or a postal vote. Some on his team weren’t happy and the idea was killed off a day later.
AFRICAN GANG VIOLENCE IN MELBOURNE
While there’s been some debate about whether there are ‘gangs’, or just groups of young Sudanese and South Sudanese men, there’s rising concern about violence in Melbourne’s suburbs. This piece from Nelly Yoa, a Sudanese-born aspiring AFL footballer, is well worth a read. (Update – this piece has since been criticised as plagiarised, but Yoa stands by it.)
AUSTRALIA TO LEAVE COALITION STRIKE FORCE IN SYRIA
Australia is ending its direct involvement in air strikes against Islamic State fighters in Iraq and Syria.
HAWKESBURY SEAPLANE CRASH KILLS SIX
A Sydney Seaplane making a return journey from Cottage Point crashed into the Hawkesbury River killing a top UK CEO Richard Cousins, his two sons, his fiance and her daughter, and the pilot. Investigations into what caused the crash are ongoing.
BACKPACKER HOUSE OVERDOSE
Nine young international travellers were hospitalised in Perth following a mass drug overdose last week. Two were left fighting for their lives in intensive care.
2017 A BAD YEAR ON OUR ROADS
Authorities across Australia have expressed their dismay at 2017’s road toll with some horror crashes marring the festive season. Television actress Jessica Falkholt remains in hospital after a crash on the NSW South Coast on Boxing Day that claimed the lives of her parents and sister, and the driver of the other car.
Kiwi singing superstar Lorde has been under pressure since cancelling a concert in Israel with one pro-Israel group running ads against her in the Washington Post. She has since had some support from the artistic community.
THAI MEN WARNED ABOUT NEW COSMETIC TREND
We won’t outline the gruesome details here, but this link will lay it all out for you. Thailand’s Public Health Ministry has warned men thinking of undertaking the procedure that it’s really not necessary.
And you’re done.
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