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  • Coronavirus live news: global death toll exceeds 750,000 as Europe struggles with rise in cases
    by Jessica Murray (now); Sarah Marsh and Helen Sullivan (earlier) on 13 Agosto 2020 at 14:15

    Pandemic has killed three quarters of a million people; workplaces in France are top source of case clusters; Germany case jump shows ‘unsettling trend’ ‘They’ve jumped the gun’: scientists worry about Russia’s Covid-19 vaccine Covid-19 may have been circulating in New Zealand for weeks, as fresh case emerges French and Dutch on alert over rise in cases UK coronavirus live: latest news See all our coronavirus coverage 2.52pm BST The coronavirus pandemic has now killed more than 750,000 people worldwide, according to data from the Johns Hopkins University tracker. A total of 750,371 deaths have been recorded, out of 20,651,113 cases across the globe. 2.45pm BST Liberia’s health ministry has confirmed the vice-president, who was flown to Ghana on Tuesday for medical care, has tested positive for Covid-19. Officials initially denied that Jewel Howard-Taylor was ill with the coronavirus. She is an ex-wife of the former jailed Liberian president Charles Taylor. Continue reading...

  • Biden campaign receives $26m boost in donations after Kamala Harris pick – live
    by Lauren Aratani (now) and Martin Belam (earlier) on 13 Agosto 2020 at 14:07

    Biden: ‘The excitement is palpable, because there’s so much at stake’ Highest daily Covid-19 death toll recorded in US since mid-May US unemployment claims dip below 1m for first time in 20 weeks Postal service changes pose threat to voting, says former USPS deputy Oakland ‘hella proud’ of Harris – despite progressives’ misgivings Sign up to our First Thing newsletter 3.03pm BST AMC, the largest movie theater chain in the US, just announced that it will be offering 15-cent movie tickets when more than 100 of its theaters open August 20, according to the AP. The chain calls its reopening promotion “Movies in 2020 at 1920 Prices”. The chain has been closed in the US since March when most states began to shut down businesses to stop the spread of Covid-19. AMC had originally announced in June that it would reopen its theaters July 15, but as cases continued to increase in the US, the chain continued to push back its reopening timeline. 2.45pm BST This is Lauren Aratani taking over for Martin Belam. Joe Biden’s presidential campaign raised $26 million in the 24-hour period after he announced that US Senator Kamala Harris will be his running mate. The boost in donation is a much-needed sign of momentum behind Biden’s campaign brought on by Harris’ arrival. Trump’s fundraising in July topped Biden’s by $30 million, bringing in a total of $165 million compared to Biden’s $140 million. Continue reading...

  • Novak Djokovic 'happy' to compete in US Open despite coronavirus fears
    by PA Media on 13 Agosto 2020 at 13:26

    World tennis No 1 says ‘it was not an easy decision to make’ Rafeal Nadal among several players to have pulled out Novak Djokovic has confirmed that he will compete in the US Open in New York later this month. Several players have already pulled out of the tournament, including four-time winner and defending champion Rafael Nadal, due to coronavirus fears. But the world No 1, who tested positive for Covid-19 in June following the controversial Adria Tour, wrote on his website: “I am happy to confirm that I will participate at the Western & Southern Open and US Open this year. Continue reading...

  • I used to be critical of Kamala Harris. Now I am going to defend her at every turn | Shanita Hubbard
    by Shanita Hubbard on 13 Agosto 2020 at 13:21

    While the announcement caught very few of us by surprise, a jolt of excitement was inserted into this election. And rightly so The historic announcement of Kamala Harris as Joe Biden’s VP pick is another reminder that multiple things can be true at the same time. Harris is undeniably brilliant, has recently introduced bills that would specifically improve the quality of live for Black Americans, and by all accounts she is superior in every way imaginable to the current president. In fact, adding her to the ticket has made me far more enthusiastic about this race than I was even days before the announcement. Related: Kamala Harris: trailblazer who went from Joe Biden’s rival to running mate Continue reading...

  • Falcon patrol and flying kicks: Thursday's best photos
    by Arnel Hecimovic on 13 Agosto 2020 at 12:45

    The Guardian’s picture editors select photo highlights from around the world Continue reading...

  • US unemployment claims dip below 1m for first time in 20 weeks
    by Dominic Rushe in New York on 13 Agosto 2020 at 12:38

    Figures show 963,000 people filed for claims last week as pandemic’s devastating impact maintains grip on economy The number of Americans who filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week dipped below 1 million for the first time in 20 weeks but signs of the coronavirus pandemic’s devastating impact on the US jobs market remain. The latest figures from the labor department showed 963,000 people filing claims after 20 weeks of claims above 1m. Claims still remain historically high. Before the pandemic claims were averaging around 200,000 a week and the previous record for claims was 695,000, set in 1982. Continue reading...

  • Plagues of field mice decimating crops, say German farmers
    by Kate Connolly in Berlin on 13 Agosto 2020 at 12:23

    Estimated 300,000 acres stripped bare by rodents and now browning in heatwave Large swathes of Germany’s farmland are being decimated by plagues of field mice leading to significant crop loss, according to the country’s national farming association. In some parts of the country, a quarter of the arable land is afflicted, leading to calls for compensation as well as a relaxation on rules governing the use of pesticides. Continue reading...

  • Blaise Matuidi signs with David Beckham's Inter Miami on free transfer
    by Guardian sport on 13 Agosto 2020 at 12:08

    France international signs with Beckham’s first-year MLS club Matuidi, 33, scored eight goals in 133 appearances for Juventus David Beckham’s Inter Miami announced the signing of France international Blaise Matuidi on Thursday morning, the second day of Major League Soccer’s secondary transfer window. Related: Fans boo players kneeling for national anthem before MLS game in Dallas Continue reading...

  • Conservatives are trying to destroy the US Postal Service. Instead we should expand it | Bhaskar Sunkara
    by Bhaskar Sunkara on 13 Agosto 2020 at 11:29

    The USPS is our most successful and trusted institution by almost any measure. Let’s embrace and empower it There is an American corporation that employs 633,108 people, handles 142.6bn pieces of product every year, and holds a 48% global market share in its sector. It constitutes a domestic retail network larger than McDonald’s, Starbucks and Walmart combined, one that spans even the most rural and isolated parts of the United States. It is an iconic brand tremendously popular with the American public. Even during a devastating pandemic, this firm has seen its total third-quarter revenue increase by $547m year over year. Related: US Postal Service announces cost-saving changes amid vote-by-mail fears Continue reading...

  • How did rich millennials become the voice of generation rent? | Rachel Connolly
    by Rachel Connolly on 13 Agosto 2020 at 11:17

    For landlords and those with family wealth, the elite is always somebody else In millennial-land nothing is ever as it seems. Those who stand to inherit substantial wealth will complain they are crippled by the high cost of rent; those with degrees from the most prestigious universities in the world will declare themselves unable to access stable employment, drawing parallels with Uber drivers; and those with rich and famous parents will speak, darkly, of “hustling” their way into the industries in which their relatives work. Of course, structural problems like rent, debt and finding meaningful work do affect many young people, particularly as some industries have contracted, making job opportunities in certain sectors scarce. But this reality has been warped to imply that such problems affect everyone approximately equally. The structural nature of these problems has come to mean almost nobody is responsible for causing them; instead they are the result of nebulous external forces, or an elite that is always conveniently defined as existing at the level of wealth above whoever is doing the defining. Certain phrases, like “privilege”, “elite”, “middle class”, “hard work”, and “self-made” are used all the time to mean completely different things. Continue reading...

  • Scotch whisky makers rail against UK government inaction over US tariffs
    by Severin Carrell Scotland editor on 13 Agosto 2020 at 11:15

    Industry says UK is prioritising post-Brexit trade talks with Washington rather than fight 25% tariffs The Scotch whisky industry has attacked the UK government for its “inexplicably slow” action against hefty tariffs imposed on whisky imports by the US government. In an unusually critical statement, the Scotch Whisky Association accused UK ministers of prioritising post-Brexit trade talks with the US rather than fight against the 25% tariffs imposed on Scotch whisky and other goods by the US last October, in a dispute over European subsidies for the planemaker Airbus. Continue reading...

  • Fans boo players kneeling for national anthem before MLS game in Dallas
    by Guardian sport and agencies on 13 Agosto 2020 at 11:03

    Reggie Cannon rips fans’ ‘absolutely disgusting’ reaction Nashville won 1-0 in both teams’ first match since March There was a smattering of boos when players from FC Dallas and Nashville SC collectively took a knee during the national anthem before their MLS game on Wednesday night in Frisco, Texas. Dallas defender Reggie Cannon said he was disgusted by the boos at Toyota Stadium when players and officials knelt to call attention to racial injustice. He said teammate Ryan Hollingshead turned to him afterward and said he was sorry. Continue reading...

  • Greek military put on high alert as tensions with Turkey rise
    by Helena Smith in Athens and Jon Henley in Paris on 13 Agosto 2020 at 10:26

    Dispute over exploration of energy reserves in eastern Mediterranean escalates Greece has placed its military forces on high alert, recalling its naval and air force officers from holiday, as tensions with Turkey over exploration of potentially lucrative offshore energy reserves escalate in the eastern Mediterranean. With Ankara dispatching the Oruç Reis, a drillship escorted by gunboats, to conduct seismic research in contested waters, Athens stepped up calls for Turkey to stop the “illegal” activities, intensifying a diplomatic offensive that has prompted the US, EU, France and Israel to express growing anxiety over the situation. Continue reading...

  • Pop culture is overdue for another racial reckoning - about colourism | Priya Elan
    by Priya Elan on 13 Agosto 2020 at 10:19

    A preference for people of color with lighter skin tones is endemic in the entertainment and fashion industries The killing of George Floyd and the mass protests that followed opened more people’s eyes to the extent of systemic racism in society. But there’s one type of discrimination which still needs a larger reckoning: colourism – discrimination based on skin tone. Related: Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion's WAP should be celebrated, not scolded | Dream McClinton Continue reading...

  • First Thing: Kamala Harris is making the case against Trump
    by Tim Walker on 13 Agosto 2020 at 10:08

    Joe Biden’s running mate said president had left US and its global reputation ‘in tatters’. Plus, pop culture is due a reckoning about colourism Don’t already get First Thing in your inbox? Sign up here Good morning. Donald Trump’s “failures in leadership” have left America “in tatters”, said Joe Biden’s new running mate, Kamala Harris, during their first joint appearance on the Democratic presidential ticket in Delaware on Wednesday night. Together, Biden and Harris said they would guide the US through the three major national crises its faces in 2020: the Covid-19 pandemic, the struggling economy and a reckoning with systemic racism. Continue reading...

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