Peta Credlin says Tony Abbott motivated by frustration and 'is not going anywhere'

Tony Abbott will not stop his insurgency against Malcolm Turnbull’s leadership because the Liberal party is in trouble and needs to become more conservative to win the next election, Peta Credlin has warned. The former Abbott loyalist Mathias Cormann warned on Sunday that the former prime minister now risks his legacy if his destabilisation continues. Credlin said that while the Liberal party had both a liberal and conservative tradition, “its greatest success has come when it’s governed with conservative instincts”. She claimed Turnbull was desperate “to hold on to power” whereas Abbott was “desperate to hold the Liberal party together”. “[Turnbull] was elected because many in the sensible centre thought he ... would be a better prime minister than Tony Abbott.

February 25, 2017 23:05 UTC

Donald Trump will not attend White House correspondents' dinner

Donald Trump on Saturday capped a week of tumultuous relations with the press by saying he will not attend this year’s White House correspondents’ dinner, which is scheduled for 29 April. Trump's media war threatens journalists globally, protection group warns Read more“I will not be attending the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner this year,” the president wrote on Twitter. Editors of excluded organisations expressed anger, although White House Correspondents Association (WHCA) president Jeff Mason, of Reuters, attempted to calm troubled waters. Sad!”Many observers have linked Trump’s run for the presidency with events at the 2011 correspondents’ dinner, in which Barack Obama ridiculed the businessman, who was in attendance, over his championing of the so-called “birther” movement. The first dinner was held in 1921 and Calvin Coolidge was the first president to attend, in 1924.

February 25, 2017 22:36 UTC

José Mourinho: my three league titles do not match Claudio Ranieri’s one

José Mourinho has told Claudio Ranieri his achievement at Leicester last season was bigger than all three titles he won in his two spells at Chelsea, and the people of the city will never forget him. “We cannot be naive, we cannot go around believing it is the same game we had 20 years ago, even 10 years ago,” Mourinho said. “For me there clearly was a next step and there will be for Claudio too,” he said. Chelsea supporters do not forget what I did and in my opinion Claudio did even more for Leicester. “From my experience there are two things Claudio needs to know,” Mourinho said.

February 25, 2017 22:30 UTC

The Observer view on Labour and Jeremy Corbyn | Observer editorial

Corbyn speaks in slogans and appears to have no appetite or capacity to engage in new, innovative ways of addressing a range of issues that confront Labour. Jeremy Corbyn’s anti-nuclear position unquestionably made things trickier, given the importance of the nuclear energy industry to local jobs. Labour’s support among the working classes has been in steady decline since 1997. James Morris, a former Labour pollster, on these pages writes of the disdain working-class voters often express for Mr Corbyn in focus groups. In choosing to cling on, Jeremy Corbyn – and those whose support is keeping in him in place – can answer to that.

February 25, 2017 22:01 UTC

Coach Alberto Salazar accused of endangering Mo Farah with drugs

Alberto Salazar with Sir Mo Farah. Documents seen by The Sunday Times show that Farah and other athletes coached by Alberto Salazar were given infusions of a research supplement based on the chemical L-carnitine. Salazar even boasted to Lance Armstrong, the world’s most notorious drugs cheat, about the “incredible” performance-boosting effects of the substance. We have tested it and it’s amazing,” Salazar emailed Armstrong before the cycling star’s downfall. One athlete who was given a high dosage concluded that it was as effective as illegal blood doping, says the leaked…

February 25, 2017 21:56 UTC

Scott Pruitt vows to slash climate and water pollution regulations at CPAC

The Trump appointee signalled that the president is set to start the work of dismantling climate and water rules as early as next week. Pruitt sued the EPA over its pollution regulations 14 times while he was attorney general of Oklahoma, often in concert with oil and gas interests. Two cases fought by Pruitt led to courts freezing the Clean Power Plan and the Waters of the US rule. It is also uncertain what the EPA’s replacement plan to combat climate change will be. Facebook Twitter Pinterest A climate change rally in San Diego, California, after the Senate confirmed Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

February 25, 2017 21:48 UTC

Child-induced fatigue costs economy dear, says new study

In the first study of its kind, Joan Costa-i-Font and Sarah Flèche, of the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics and Political Science, have found that baby-induced fatigue is significantly undermining economic performance. The data contains precise information on the child’s quality of sleep, including whether they wake up at night and how often. A one-hour increase in the amount of sleep a baby has increases the time a mother sleeps by 12 minutes. Costa-i-Font and Flèche say: “The effects of parental sleep on economic performance are substantial.”A one-hour increase in the amount of sleep a mother has improves their employment prospects by 4%. The effect of disruptive children on paternal sleep was found to be only half of that on maternal sleep.

February 25, 2017 21:22 UTC

Kurds offer land for independence in struggle to reshape Iraq

As Iraqi forces continue their advance towards key Isis-defended districts in west Mosul, attention is turning to what northern Iraq will look like once the jihadi group is routed. Already President Masoud Barzani of the Kurdistan region has “seriously discussed” independence with Mike Pence, the US vice-president. For the KRG itself, one potential pawn in its campaign to cut loose from Baghdad is the huge swathe of land peshmerga forces have liberated from the advance of Isis . In total, the Kurds have increased the land mass under their control by up to 40%. When asked what leverage Erbil was prepared to use in independence talks, Mustafa said that “of course” land was a factor to be considered.

February 25, 2017 20:33 UTC

Tom Perez is new Democratic party chair, beating Keith Ellison in tight vote

The former labor secretary Tom Perez was elected chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) on Saturday, after a fiercely fought campaign. Perez won in the second vote, after missing out by just one vote in the first round of voting. “This incredibly disappointing result is another missed opportunity for a Democratic party desperately trying to regain relevance” said Jim Dean, chair of Democracy for America, which endorsed Ellison. Facebook Twitter Pinterest Keith Ellison, who narrowly lost the vote but was named deputy chair, made an appeal for unity. Democratic party seeks relevance and resonance under Trump Read moreThe winner inherits a party demoralized by years of losses at local, state and national levels.

February 25, 2017 20:27 UTC

Antonio Conte says trophy-winning experience fuels Chelsea’s title charge

But class told thereafter, with Conte ready to lean on the experience within his ranks to ensure focus is maintained for the final three months of the campaign. “Keeping that focus is not easy over the whole championship but I have a lot of players who have won [titles] in the past,” said the Italian. “They know very well the way that we must continue to try to keep at the top of the table, to try and win the title. I’m lucky to have a lot of players who, in the past, won a lot of trophies. In these situations, when the tension starts to increase, you’ve got to see the right answers from my players.

February 25, 2017 19:30 UTC

Trump's media war threatens journalists globally, protection group warns

Spicer later said the White House planned to “aggressively push back” against the press. On Friday night, Trump kept up his attack, using Twitter to say: “FAKE NEWS media knowingly doesn’t tell the truth. New York Times editor Dean Baquet said “nothing like this has ever happened at the White House in our long history of covering multiple administrations”. On Saturday, the Trump administration faced new reports regarding its efforts to downplay what intelligence agencies believe to be communications between campaign staff and Russian intelligence. The dispute is carrying over into areas where detente is usually observed, for example the annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner.

February 25, 2017 19:14 UTC

UN decries Homs attacks as an effort to 'spoil' Syrian peace talks

Suicide bombers with links to al-Qaida killed dozens as the talks in Geneva were stymiedA United Nations peace envoy has said a militant attack in Syria was a deliberate attempt to wreck peace talks in Geneva, while the warring sides appeared no closer to actual negotiations. Suicide bombers stormed two Syrian security offices in Homs, killing dozens with gunfire and explosions, including the head of military security, prompting airstrikes against the last rebel-held enclave in the western city. UN's Syria envoy pledges 'serious try' as peace talks resume in Geneva Read more“Spoilers were always expected, and should continue to be expected, to try to influence the proceedings of the talks. UN's Syria envoy pledges 'serious try' as peace talks resume in Geneva Read moreHe has warned not to expect any quick breakthrough and to beware of letting the violence derail any fragile progress, as happened repeatedly in the past. After the meeting with de Mistura, the Syrian government’s lead negotiator Bashar Jaafari spoke to reporters and repeatedly demanded the opposition condemn the attacks or face the consequences.

February 25, 2017 18:35 UTC

German man, 73, dies after car driven into pedestrians in Heidelberg

A 73-year-old man died and two others were injured after a man drove a car into pedestrians in a square in the centre of Heidelberg. The attacker, who was armed with a knife, fled before being surrounded by police near a swimming pool in the south-western German town. On Saturday night, Mannheim police said the man suspected of carrying out the attack was a 35-year-old German, and that they did not suspect any terrorist motive. Officers trapped the man near the entrance to a swimming pool and ordered him to drop the knife, but, according to local media, he refused and was shot. “In front of the local indoor swimming pool, he was identified by a police patrol on the advice of passersby.

February 25, 2017 18:06 UTC

Five London teenagers in court over terror charges

Four teenagers have appeared in court on terrorism charges which include owning material on how to build pressure cooker bombs and preparing to travel to the Middle East to join Islamic State. Ahmedeltigani Alsyed, 19, of Hounslow, a 17-year-old from Merton, a 16-year-old from Lambeth and a 17-year-old from Hounslow are all charged with preparing for terrorist acts. Two are charged with collecting information contrary to section 58 of the Terrorism Act 2000 and one is charged with the dissemination of terrorist publications. A fifth boy, aged 15, is accused of having terrorist materials, including the Islamic State publication Inspire and a bomb-making video. All five of the suspects are accused of swapping messages online discussing how to travel to Turkey.

February 25, 2017 18:01 UTC

Three charged with slavery offences after raid on cannabis farm

Police officers discovered 20 rooms, each 200ft long and 70ft wide, all filled with cannabis plants during a raid yesterday PAThree men have appeared in court charged with slavery and drug offences after a raid on a £1 million cannabis farm in a nuclear bunker. Martin Fillery, 45, Plamen Nguyen, 27, and Ross Winter, 30, appeared at Swindon magistrates’ court charged with conspiracy to produce cannabis, conspiracy to hold persons in slavery or servtude and conspiring to abstract electricity without authority. Fillery, of Aschott, Somerset, and Winter and Nguyen, both of Bristol, spoke only to confirm their names, addresses and dates of birth. The three men were remanded in custody and will appear before Salisbury Crown Court on March 29. Detective Inspector Paul Franklin, who led the Wiltshire Police investigation, said that suspicions were first aroused when dog walkers near the site of RGHQ Chilmark,…

February 25, 2017 18:01 UTC

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