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Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 21 March 2023

1

US police prepare for Trump unrest

Police in New York, Washington DC and Los Angeles are preparing for potential unrest in case Donald Trump is arrested as part of a hush-money investigation. In New York City, all NYPD officers are expected to be in uniform and ready for deployment today, according to an internal memo shown to CNN. The broadcaster said a Manhattan prosecutor may charge Trump over claims that he paid a porn star to keep quiet about the affair they allegedly had. According to The Times, “gun-toting supporters” have been urged to protect Trump after he claimed he will be arrested today.

2

Met faces damning report

Women and children have been failed by the Metropolitan Police, with racism, misogyny, and homophobia at the heart of the force, a year-long review has found. Warning that the force could be dismantled if it does not improve, Baroness Casey said a “boys’ club” culture is rife. Her report, described as “blistering” by the BBC and “excoriating” by The Times, said that the force needs independent oversight and specialists appointed from outside to help overhaul it.

Is breaking up Scotland Yard the answer to its problems?

3

Johnson ‘planning a comeback’

Boris Johnson told the House of Commons that social-distancing had been followed “at all times” in Downing Street without any “explicit assurance” from his aides, said The Times. The former PM has submitted a dossier to the privileges committee investigating allegations that he misled MPs, ahead of his appearance tomorrow. The i news site said the former PM is considering “staging an extraordinary political comeback” if he is cleared by the parliamentary inquiry.

Partygate inquiry: can Boris Johnson save his skin?

4

Poll shows Tory gains

Labour’s lead over the Tories has more than halved in the past week, reported The Telegraph. A survey by Deltapoll found that Keir Starmer’s party saw support fall by five points to 45%, while the Conservatives rose to 35% – up eight points. The study followed “prominent coverage of Suella Braverman’s Rwanda migrants plan” and Jeremy Hunt’s first Budget. Lord Hayward, a Tory peer widely regarded as an authority on elections, said Rishi Sunak “may now be pulling the Tory party up”.

Budget 2023: the big giveaways and takeaways

5

Analysts say Bank will hold rates

Barclays believes the Bank of England will be forced to abandon an interest rate rise this week following upheaval in global financial markets. The lender has scrapped its expectation for a 0.25 percentage point rise on Thursday following UBS’s emergency takeover of Credit Suisse and the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in the US last week. Other analysts have made the same prediction. David Hollingworth, of L&C Mortgages, told The Telegraph that the base rate being held would “open up the chance” for banks to start reducing fixed rates.

Credit Suisse: will emergency lifeline calm global bank fears?

6

US presses China on Putin

Washington has urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to call on Vladimir Putin to stop his “war crimes” in in Ukraine. As the two leaders prepare to meet again for official talks during Xi’s first visit to Moscow since the invasion, the White House said it hopes that “President Xi will press President Putin to cease bombing Ukrainian cities, hospitals and schools, to halt the war crimes and atrocities and to withdraw his troops”. At yesterday’s meeting between the two men, Xi called Putin his “dear friend”.

Xi Jinping: the new global peacemaker

7

Ukraine drone strike in Crimea

Ukraine said an explosion in the Crimean city of Dzhankoi destroyed Russian cruise missiles intended for use by Moscow’s Black Sea fleet. The Moscow-installed head of the city of Dzhankoi said the area had been attacked by drones. If confirmed, it would be a “rare foray” by Ukraine’s military into Crimea, which has been annexed since 2014, said the BBC. Footage showed a loud single fiery blast followed by a plume of smoke in the evening sky.

8

Report shows ‘startling’ disparities

A new study found that being born into one of the wealthiest areas of the country adds an average of 12 years to your life. After analysing data from the Office for National Statistics, the campaign group Health Equals found that children in Hampstead, north London, can expect to live to 88, while those born in Glasgow have a life expectancy of 76. Revealing the “startling” regional disparities, it warned that poor housing, substandard education and poverty were “cutting short millions of lives by over a decade”.

9

Netanyahu ‘climbdown’ dismissed

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government has announced its “first climbdown” on a key part of its controversial plans to overhaul the country’s judicial system, said CNN. However, the concession, which would give Israeli governments less power to select new judges, was rejected by opposition leaders as insufficient. Over recent months, hundreds of thousands of Israelis have regularly taken to the streets to protest against Netanyahu’s plans.

The democratic crisis facing Israel and Benjamin Netanyahu

10

Murdoch marriage ‘sets up plot twist’

Rupert Murdoch is to marry for the fifth time. The media tycoon, 92, has announced his engagement to his partner Ann Lesley Smith, a 66-year-old former police chaplain. The couple met in September at an event at his vineyard in California. Speaking to one of his papers, the New York Post, he said: “I dreaded falling in love – but I knew this would be my last. It better be. I’m happy.” The Daily Mail said the marriage might not be welcomed by his children, as it is “plot twist to rival Succession”.

What to expect from season four of Succession

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