Morning, everyone. In April 2019 a meeting took place involving senior government officials, the chief executive of the National Farmers’ Federation and the director of a company called Jam Land to discuss the latter’s clearing of native grasslands. But a briefing note obtained by Guardian Australia reveals that this meeting was described by officials as “unusual”. Find out why below.
Also today: there are more concerns that some remote NSW communities could be cut by flooding off until December, there’s been another World Cup upset, and the Scots have been told they can’t have another independence referendum.
Lamb chopper | Helicopters have been used to airlift sheep to safety in areas of central west NSW that remain cut off or underwater after record flooding. Some residents in Moulamein have chosen to stay, despite a warning that they could be cut off until December.
Exclusive | The federal environment department allowed the National Farmers’ Federation to attend a meeting about clearing of native grasslands by a company called Jam Land, part-owned by then-energy minister, Angus Taylor. The department’s own officials said the request for the NFF to attend would not normally be “acceptable” and could set the wrong precedent.
Voice vote | The Liberal party is expected to allow members the freedom to campaign however they wish on the Indigenous voice to parliament referendum, defying advice from the former prime minister John Howard.
‘PTSD warning’ | Sydney street personality Danny Lim repeatedly asked police to call an ambulance and informed them he had post-traumatic stress disorder before he was thrown to the ground and bloodied in a “discontinued” arrest, a witness says.
Gilchrist charges | Shaun Gilchrist, the Victorian Nationals candidate who died this week, had been charged with sexual offences more than a year ago.
Scotland ‘denied’ | The Scottish parliament cannot hold another referendum on independence without consent from the Westminster parliament, the UK supreme court ruled. Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, said democracy “will not be denied”.
China protest | Hundreds of workers have protested at Foxconn’s huge iPhone factory in Zhengzhou, China, with some men smashing surveillance cameras and windows amid growing anger at the country’s ultra-strict Covid policies.
Virginia shooting | Six people were killed when a gunman opened fire in a meeting room at a Walmart store in southern Virginia, according to local authorities. The shooter also died.
Syria bomb | An Iranian Revolutionary Guards colonel has been killed by a roadside bomb near Syria’s capital, Damascus, with Tehran media blaming Israel for the attack.
Putin ‘snub’ | Families of drafted Russian soldiers have accused Vladimir Putin of snubbing them, while a maternity ward in a hospital in Zaporizhzhia was hit in another wave of Russian bombing, killing a newborn baby.
World Cup 2022: chaos, protests and a glimmer of hope for the Socceroos
Guardian Australia’s deputy sports editor, Emma Kemp, reports from Doha about human rights in Qatar, the chaos on the ground so far and the road ahead for the Socceroos.
Victorians can choose this weekend between two parties determined to spend their way into power, financial analysts argue, with a lot of promises about new hospitals and cheaper transport. Our reporters pick five issues that should have been discussed but which haven’t: bail reform, community health, child protection, housing and Covid.
Not the news
“Few people alive today could say that they’ve brought more happiness to more people than Shigeru Miyamoto has, through his games and his influence.” So says our video games editor, Keza MacDonald, who pays tribute to the Nintendo designer and brains behind Super Mario, Zelda and many other games, as he turns 70. Happy birthday, Miyamoto-san.
The world of sport
World Cup | Japan caused the second major upset of the tournament in as many days when they came from behind to beat the mighty Germany 2-1, while earlier Croatia and Morocco drew 0-0. The German players covered their mouths and wore rainbows on their kit in a pre-match protest against the Qatari authorities.
Formula One | Daniel Ricciardo will join Red Bull as the team’s third driver for the 2023 Formula One season, the Australian reuniting with team he raced for between 2014 and 2018 and with whom he scored seven grand prix victories.
NBA | Ben Simmons was met with a constant stream of boos when he returned with the Brooklyn Nets to face his old club Philadelphia, and ended up losing.
More than 150,000 Queenslanders are in housing distress, the Courier-Mail says, while people in Mannum are packing up their valuables and leaving their homes as the Murray River threatens to flood their homes, the Adelaide Advertiser reports. The NT News says the territory’s police chief will send an extra 40 officers into the centre of Alice Springs to combat street crime. The Geelong Advertiser reports that new multi-storey car parks and a flexible payment system are two of the options being proposed to solve the city’s parking problems.
What’s happening today
Juukan response | Tanya Plibersek will give the government’s response to the northern Australia joint select committee report into the destruction of Juukan Gorge.
Airbnb hearing | The first case management hearing is due in a case brought by the ACCC against Airbnb over settomg prices in US dollars for users in Australia, leading to confusion about charges.
Aria awards | The 2021 Aria awards will be staged at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion with performances by the Kid Laroi, Amy Shark, Genesis Owusu and others.
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