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Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 11 June 2023

1

Sunak ‘avoids civil war’

Rishi Sunak “appears to have faced down a rebellion” orchestrated by Boris Johnson and avoided “civil war”, said The Sunday Times. After Johnson’s supporters Nadine Dorries and Nigel Adams also stepped down, sources close to the former PM claimed that up to six more Tory MPs would quit. However, said the paper, backing for Johnson “appeared to evaporate” as “a number of his supporters quickly ruled themselves out of any co-ordinated plot”.

2

Wuhan scientists face new claim

Scientists in Wuhan were combining the world’s most deadly coronaviruses to create a new mutant virus shortly before the Covid pandemic began, reported The Sunday Times. Investigators believe Chinese scientists, working alongside the nation’s military, were running a secret project of dangerous experiments, which caused a leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology and started the Covid-19 outbreak. The US believe the purpose of the research was to create bioweapons.

3

Zelensky confirms counteroffensive

Ukraine has confirmed that the country’s long-awaited counter-offensive against Russia has started. “Counter-offensive and defensive actions are taking place,” said President Volodymyr Zelensky. He would not explain what stage the operations were at, but said to pass on to Vladimir Putin that his generals were optimistic and in “positive mood”. Counterattacking Ukrainian forces have advanced up to 1,400 metres at a number of sections of the front line.

4

Trump dismisses indictment

Donald Trump has described the federal indictment against him as “ridiculous and baseless”. After a 37-count indictment was made public on Friday, the former US president delivered two speeches yesterday. He said the indictment constituted “election interference” by the “corrupt” FBI and justice department. He also vowed to continue his 2024 presidential run even if he is convicted over his retention of classified documents, declaring: “I’ll never leave”.

5

City ‘in a league of their own’

Manchester City’s “long quest” to win the Champions League “finally ended in triumph” against Inter Milan in Istanbul as they completed the Treble, said the BBC. Although Pep Guardiola’s side “were never at their best against a brilliantly organised Inter”, the “massed ranks of City fans inside Ataturk Stadium did not care about that as they joyously celebrated the greatest night – and season – in the club’s history”, said the outlet. The Sun said City are “in a league of their own”.

6

‘Unabomber’ found dead

Ted Kaczynski has been found dead in his prison cell, federal officials confirmed to the BBC. Better known as the Unabomber, Kaczynski killed three people and injured 23 more during a mass mail-bombing spree between 1978 and 1995. “Alone in a shack in the Montana wilderness, he fashioned homemade bombs and launched a violent one-man campaign to destroy industrial society”, said the New York Times. Kaczynski later pleaded guilty to the offences.

7

Odey steps down from hedge fund

A woman who lost a sexual assault case against hedge fund manager Crispin Odey said she had paved the way for others to come forward. Odey is leaving the investment firm he founded after allegations that he sexually assaulted or harassed 13 women. The developments “may have been inspired by one woman’s bravery”, said The Sunday Times, but a legal firm representing the financier has said the allegations are “strenuously disputed”.

8

‘Explosion’ on Gladiator set

Crew members filming a Gladiator movie in Morocco have been injured in a stunt accident on set. Paramount Pictures said the injuries were non life-threatening and the crew members were “all in stable condition and continue to receive treatment”. Variety reported that six people received treatment for burn injuries after the incident. The Sun said that the victims were “engulfed in a fireball” following an “explosion”.

9

Flexible hours a must for firms

Companies that do not adopt flexible working will struggle to hire in the next five years, argued a leading businesswoman. “I think the world has changed post-pandemic,” said Natalie Campbell, co-chief executive of Belu Water. “People absolutely recognise that being visible, being seen at a desk, literally at the desk in front of a screen, does not deliver or make for a fully productive workforce.” She added that “trying to shoehorn 19th-century Industrial Revolution-style ways of working… doesn’t work”.

10

Loch Ness water level drops

The water level in Loch Ness is “dramatically” low after UK temperatures hit 30C yesterday and experts believe it will continue to fall. This could lead to a big development in the saga of the Loch Ness monster, said The Telegraph. “For centuries, the murky depths of Loch Ness have hidden Nessie from prying human eyes – save a few sightings of the mythical beast”, noted the paper, “but now diminishing water levels” could “soon expose her scales to sunburn”.

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