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Specieswatch: dexters – the small cattle breed that is booming

Dexters are the smallest breed of cattle in Europe and among the hardiest, which makes them popular in conservation and rewilding projects. They are a third the size of a Friesian milking cow and other European commercial breeds of cattle. All these varieties go by the same Latin name, Bos taurus taurus , to distinguish them from Asiatic and African species. Although they are now bred all over the world, dexters originated in the west of Ireland...


Sam McBride: Scenes at another republican funeral put uncomfortable focus on Sinn Fein – but also the PSNI

The crowd at Eamonn McCourt’s funeral has focused uncomfortable attention not just on Sinn Fein, but also on the PSNI.


McCourt funeral just latest of six major republican send-offs during Covid crisis

The Eamonn McCourt funeral just the latest of a number of republican send-offs which have come under the spotlight for possible breaches of coronavirus rules or guidelines.


Your Morning Briefing

Good morning. Here’s what you need to know to start your day with our daily briefing.


Positive COVID-19 tests linked to Australian Open downgraded to eight

Positive COVID-19 tests linked to Australian Open downgraded to eight


David Attenborough warns planet is on the verge of another mass extinction event

In the latest episode of A Perfect Planet, Sir David Attenborough warns that the planet is 'collapsing' in a terrifying message


What the papers say – January 27

A sombre statistic about the human toll of the pandemic dominates the front pages on Wednesday.


California man arrested, accused of sending threatening messages to brother of Rep. Hakeem Jeffries

On the same day a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol earlier this month, the brother of Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) received threatening text messages from a person who told him the lawmaker was "putting your entire family at risk with his lies and other words," the congressman's office confirmed on Tuesday. The incident was included in a federal criminal complaint unsealed in Manhattan. According to the document, Jeffries' brother, Hasan...


EU revealed to be world's biggest live animal exporter

New analysis suggests the EU could be responsible for up to 80% of the global trade in live farm animals, which continues to be linked to animal welfare failings. Global data provided to the Guardian by the UN’s Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) indicates that 1.8 billion live chickens, pigs, sheep, goats and cattle were moved across a border in 2019. The EU was estimated to be responsible for more than three-quarters of that total. “A...


Fox hosts accuse media of ‘gushing’ over Biden – after four years of fawning over Trump

The hosts at Fox News have been furious in recent days. The mainstream media, they say, has been “gushing” over Joe Biden, offering “nauseating” coverage of the new president and “not hiding their excitement”. Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham are some of the rightwing commentators at the conservative channel getting good mileage from the alleged Biden-fawning – but their accusations have raised eyebrows among those who watched Fox...


'I refused to let them intimidate me': the untold stories of LGBT+ seniors

When Pearl Bennett, now 69, came out as a transgender woman at a family dinner when she was 50, she wasn’t warmly embraced. Bennett’s mother leaned in and asked: “What is all this?” “I saw that look in my mother’s eyes, she was a little drunk,” recalls Bennett. “My mom stroked my breast, came in close and said: ‘I just want you to know that West Palm Beach is not big enough for ‘Pearl’ and the Bennetts,’” recalls Bennett. “I felt ostracized by...


UK coronavirus LIVE: Boris Johnson says it is ‘hard to compute the sorrow’ as UK Covid death toll passes 100,000

Boris Johnson has said it is “hard to compute the sorrow” of the UK passing 100,00 coronavirus deaths. The Prime Minister told the Downing Street press conference: “I’m sorry to have to tell you that today the number of deaths recorded from Covid in the UK has surpassed 100,000. “It’s hard to compute the sorrow contained in that grim statistic: The years of life lost, the family gatherings not attended and for so many relatives the missed chance...


No new players elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame

No new players were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame for the first time in 60 years years as Curt Schilling falls just 16 votes short and accused steroids cheats Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens are also denied entry.


Kerry aims to talk US back into a lead role in climate fight

From a wood-paneled library in his Boston mansion, new climate envoy John Kerry is talking the U.S. back into a leading role in global climate action, making clear the nation isn't just revving up its own efforts to reduce oil, gas and coal pollution but that it intends to push everyone in the world to do more, too. Kerry’s diplomatic efforts match the fast pace of domestic climate directives by the week-old Biden administration, which created...


SF issues press release about farm conditions in India amid clamour for funeral answers

Amid growing demands for Sinn Fein to break its silence over exactly who attended the controversial funeral of IRA man Eamonn McCourt, the party instead issued a press release about farming in India.


Security tight at India's historic Red Fort after clashes with farmers

Security tight at India's historic Red Fort after clashes with farmers


Japan PM apologises after lawmakers' night club outings

Japan PM apologises after lawmakers' night club outings


Your morning briefing: What you should know for Wednesday, January 27

UK’s Covid death toll could reach 150,000 before pandemic ‘burns out,’ Sage scientist warns The UK could see another 50,000 deaths from coronavirus, a scientist advising the Government has warned after the grim milestone of 100,000 was reached. Boris Johnson insisted he takes “full responsibility” for the response to the pandemic and said “we did everything we could” to minimise suffering. Professor Calum Semple, who sits on the Government’s...


The DUP needs to admit it was wrong to put trust in Boris Johnson

A letter from Raymond McCord:


Emmerdale foreshadows Al Chapman murder twist with chilling death comment?

Emmerdale's Al Chapman could regret crossing Debbie Dingle and Priya Sharma, as the village turns against him


Another pandemic-causing ‘Disease X’ could be around the corner, scientist warns

Another pandemic-causing ‘Disease X’ could potentially be around the corner and it is a matter of when, not if, a leading scientist has warned. However, it is difficult to tell when such a disease may emerge, and the precise mechanism of how it comes out is always unpredictable. Mark Woolhouse, professor of infectious disease epidemiology, University of Edinburgh, said that while pandemic flu is at the top of the list for outbreaks to be...


Ozughan Altun: Shop worker who stabbed love rival in the heart with pair of scissors jailed for murder

A shop worker who stabbed a love rival through the heart with a pair of scissors before leaving him to die in the street has been jailed for life. Ozughan Altun, 31, became obsessed with 24-year-old Michael Paul Baptista as they vied for the affections of a woman. In a showdown outside Altun’s family shop in Walthamstow, Mr Baptista threw a string of punches at Altun’s face. In response, Altun pulled out scissors he had armed himself with and...


Home secretary expected to announce mandatory hotel quarantine for some travellers

An announcement on mandatory hotel quarantine for some travellers is expected later today, a move that could deal a further blow to an already struggling tourism industry.


Newly found Fukushima plant contamination may delay cleanup

TOKYO (AP) — A draft investigation report into the 2011 Fukushima nuclear meltdown, adopted by Japanese nuclear regulators Wednesday, says it has detected dangerously high levels of radioactive contamination at two of the three reactors, adding to concerns about decommissioning challenges. The interim report said data collected by investigators showed that the sealing plugs sitting atop the No. 2 and 3 reactor containment vessels were as fatally...


Farmers back at protest camp after deep challenge to PM Modi

NEW DELHI (AP) — Tens of thousands of farmers who stormed the historic Red Fort on India's Republic Day were again camped outside the capital Wednesday after the most volatile day of their two-month standoff left one protester dead and more than 300 police officers injured. The protests demanding the repeal of new agricultural laws have grown into a rebellion that is rattling Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government. On Tuesday, more than...


Cambodia's cash-strapped cyclo drivers treated to pedal-in movie

Cambodia's cash-strapped cyclo drivers treated to pedal-in movie


U.S. restores relations with Palestinians

The Biden administration announced Tuesday that the U.S. is restoring relations with the Palestinians and will resume supporting assistance programs that deliver humanitarian aid to refugees, a reversal from former President Donald Trump's policies. Acting U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Richard Mills said the new policy is "the best way to ensure Israel's future as a democratic and Jewish state while upholding the Palestinians' legitimate...


Covid vaccine ‘sceptic’ pharmacist faces jail for deliberately spoiling hundreds of doses

A pharmacist faces prison after he admitted deliberately spoiling hundreds of doses of coronavirus vaccine. Steven Brandenburg could serve up to 10 years behind bars after agreeing to plead guilty to damaging a batch of the Moderna vaccine being distributed in Wisconsin. Officials from Advocate Aurora Health Medical Center in Grafton, Wisconsin, announced in December that an employee had intentionally removed the doses from a freezer, but...


UN global climate poll: ‘People’s voice is clear – they want action’

The biggest ever opinion poll on climate change has found two-thirds of people think it is a “global emergency”. The survey shows people across the world support climate action and gives politicians a clear mandate to take the major action needed, according to the UN organisation that carried out the poll. The UN Development Programme (UNDP) questioned 1.2 million people in 50 countries, many of them young. While younger people showed the...


Basketball fans in LA remember Kobe Bryant one year after deadly crash

Basketball fans gathered across Los Angeles on Tuesday to remember Kobe Bryant, one year to the day after the former NBA superstar perished in a helicopter crash with daughter Gianna and seven others. Fans laid flowers and Los Angeles Lakers memorabilia at a makeshift memorial outside the Staples Center, the arena where Bryant became a city icon during a two-decade playing career. Bryant, 41, his daughter and fellow passengers died on January 26...


UK coronavirus LIVE: Covid vaccine for all over-50s ‘by March’ as ‘deaths could rise by 50,000’

Britain’s “head start” over the EU in rolling out coronavirus vaccines means almost all over-50s in the UK will get their jab by March, the chief of AstraZeneca has said. “By March, the UK will have vaccinated around 28 to 30 million people,” Pascal Soriot told Italian newspaper La Repubblica. “The Prime Minister has a goal to vaccinate 15 million people by mid-February and they’re already at 6.5 million, so they will get there.” Mr Soriot’s...


Vietnam's Communist Party chief nominated for re-election - state media

Vietnam's Communist Party chief nominated for re-election - state media


Pressure mounts on SF as Foster demands party say who was at IRA man’s funeral

Arlene Foster is demanding that Sinn Fein says exactly who attended Monday’s funeral of IRA man Eamonn McCourt, as police probe the event for potential Covid law breaches.


Cut juries from 12 to seven to combat delays in justice, says Labour

Cut juries from 12 to seven to combat delays in justice, says Labour


NI coronavirus vaccine slowdown revealed: Acceleration of roll-out promised but summer target out of reach at current rates

Northern Ireland won’t hit its target of this summer for mass vaccination of the population against coronavirus at current rates, the latest figures show.


Country diary: the camera captures a world curtained by fog

There is a vague hump shape, like a sleeping dinosaur under the trees and the camera is hunting for it. I catch the “tick-tick-tick” whirr of anguished electronics by my side as it struggles to find an edge on which to focus. My eyes learn from the camera about how we really see at a distance in freezing fog. Normally dark tree trunks are not dark at all but are filmed with a milky wash, and the spread of branches dissolves into the white of the...


Australia Day reveller trying to flee police gets stuck in mud

A Victorian man trying to flee police after Australia Day celebrations in Cairns had to be rescued by officers instead after becoming stuck in the mud.


i’s Magic Breakfast appeal: Primary school breakfasts to continue thanks to charity’s expansion

A primary school whose funding for school breakfasts was due to end will now be able to continue offering pupils a nutritious start to the day


Boris Johnson 'deeply sorry for every life that has been lost' to Covid

Boris Johnson 'deeply sorry for every life that has been lost' to Covid


GFA law ‘tweaked’ for Protocol

The government’s quiet amendment of Good Friday Agreement legislation to allow MLAs to pass the NI Protocol without cross community consent is a serious breach of the peace deal, unionists have said.


France's Dalin holds slender lead in Vendée Globe sailing race as finish nears

French sailor Charlie Dalin retained a slim lead as exhausted skippers entered the final hours of the Vendée Globe, locked in the tightest battle in the solo round-the-world race's history. After sailing more than 28,650 nautical miles, Dalin, on board Apivia, was less than 382.57nm off Les Sables d'Olonne where the leading boats are expected to conclude their maritime odyssey on Wednesday. The ninth edition of sailing's 'Everest' could still...


Global coronavirus cases hit 100 million on same day UK reaches 100,000 deaths

The number of coronavirus cases recorded around the world has passed 100 million, on the same day the UK reached the grim milestone of 100,000 deaths. The country with the most cases is the US, with more than 25 million, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. India has recorded more than 10 million cases and Brazil’s tally is over 8.8 million. The number was reached on the same day the UK Government’s figure for Covid-19 deaths passed...


McCourt funeral: ‘It looks more and more like law doesn’t apply to republicans’

The DUP has issued a tough-talking statement from its Policing Board members, saying the PSNI is feeding a public narrative that the law does not apply to republicans.


Piers Morgan calls for 'dithering' Boris Johnson to resign over 'shameful' 100k UK death toll

Good Morning Britain host Piers hit out at the prime minister for his list of errors during the coronavirus pandemic, which included him boasting in March last year that he had been shaking hands with coronavirus patients


COVID-19 pandemic forces Chelsea Flower Show to move to autumn

The Chelsea Flower Show has become the latest event to fall victim to the coronavirus pandemic.


Josh Hawley accuses Democrats who filed ethics complaint of conspiring with Lincoln Project

Republican Senator Josh Hawley has accused Democrats who filed an ethics complaint against him of working with the anti-Trump Lincoln Project. Seven Democratic senators have called for an investigation into Mr Hawley and Ted Cruz in the wake of the deadly Capitol riot that left five people dead. Both senators have faced widespread criticism amidst calls for them to resign for their role in trying to challenge Joe Biden’s election victory. Mr...


Indonesian volcano unleashes river of lava in new eruption

Authorities raised the volatile Mount Merapi’s danger level in November.


This Is How I’m Teaching My Kids About The Anti-Semitism They’ll Face

How do you tell your children that if they’d been born just six decades earlier they probably would have been murdered? Or, if they were lucky, have to be hidden by strangers and live in fear of discovery, far from the protection of their parents? My children grew up in Amsterdam. For four years we lived in the street where the Gestapo had been located in the city. Our street was also where the ‘Central Office for Jewish Emigration’ and the...


Cimate activist Luisa Neubauer: 'how can we turn this anxiety into something constructive?'

“Once we decide to do something about [the climate crisis] we can move mountains.” If the motivational quote sounds familiar, that’s because it is. Meet “the German Greta”, 24-year-old climate activist Luisa Neubauer, one of the main organisers of the Fridays for Future movement in the country, which organised the school strikes prior to the pandemic. A “sense of loss,” she says, led to her involvement in climate action. “I felt we’re losing our...


AstraZeneca boss says UK could have vaccinated 30 million people against COVID by March

AstraZeneca's chief executive has hit back at the EU by saying that "glitches" in the supply of coronavirus vaccines to the bloc are due to it signing its contract three months after the UK.