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Wombats airlifted to safety and 680 homes destroyed

<p>The current bushfire in NSW has been rapid and relentless as more than 680 homes have been destroyed by the flames.</p> <p>Communities have since banded together to help evacuate a wildlife sanctuary that had more than 300 native animals under threat from the massive blazes.</p> <p>Less than a month ago, the Rural Fire Service (RFS) told Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park, 60kms north of Sydney, that there was a chance that the park could come under threat from the Gospers Mountain fire.</p> <p>Naturally, the park’s owner Tassin Barnard was concerned that there was no way to evacuate all of the animals safely if the blaze hit the park.</p> <p>She put out a call on Facebook that reached more than 170,000 people and containers were brought to the park to help evacuate the farm animals.</p> <p>“All our farm animals are on the farm and they are having a lovely time – I don’t think they’re going to want to come home,” Barnard said to <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/dec/06/wombats-airlifted-to-safety-as-community-rallies-to-evacuate-bushfire-menaced-wildlife-sanctuary"><em>The Guardian</em></a>.</p> <p>The hundreds of native wildlife, including kangaroos, emus, koalas, wombats and dingos were left behind as Barnard had no way to move them without causing them pain or stress.</p> <p>However, RFS told Barnard two days ago that due to the intense fires that engulfed 230,000 hectares of Gospers Mountain, the sanctuary could not be protected.</p> <p>“I felt sick, because I thought I’d made the wrong decision and it was too late,” she said.</p> <p>Barnard and her crew made an evacuation plan and shifted the animals to Blackbutt Reserve. This is when two “craggy old wombats” were taken to Featherdale Wildlife Park by helicopter.</p> <p>“They’re two particularly craggy old wombats that weren’t going to take well to travelling anyway, so the fact that we could give them a 15-minute helicopter ride instead of a two- potentially three-hour car trip was really, really important,” she said.</p> <p>Barnard credits her team and the effort they went to practice evacuating the animals safely.</p> <p>“To move these 40-odd kangaroos and wallabies and five emus, I thought it was two days’ work, and I was also convinced that we were going to have animals injured in the process,” Barnard said.</p> <p>“But because my team has been practising this for three weeks, they were absolutely phenomenal … We started at 10 am and we finished at 2.30pm. And no serious injuries.”</p> <p>The animals are in safe hands, but the closure of the park means no income to feed the animals. A<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.gofundme.com/f/Save-Walkabout-Sanctuary?utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=customer&amp;utm_campaign=p_lico+share-sheet" target="_blank">GoFundMe<span> </span></a>page has been set up to support the park, which has so far raised more than $25,000.</p> <p>NSW RFS deputy commissioner Rob Rogers said that crews are planning to assess the damage from blazes today and over the weekend.</p> <p>"I think that firefighters did some incredible saves last night on properties and I think some of the vision has shown that," he said to the <a href="https://mobile.abc.net.au/news/2019-12-06/properties-destroyed-total-fire-bans-in-place-as-nsw-burns/11772568?pfmredir=sm"><em>ABC</em></a>.</p> <p>"We've got to work out how many homes we have lost."</p> <p>Footage of walls of flames have been released on social media, which Rogers says is reflective of the current landscape.</p> <p>"It's reflective of how dry the landscape is.</p> <p>"The drought makes the fuel so quick to burn and it burns so volatile when it burns."</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see just how Barnard and her team moved the animals.</p> <p><em>Photo credits: <a href="https://www.gofundme.com/f/Save-Walkabout-Sanctuary?utm_medium=copy_link&amp;utm_source=customer&amp;utm_campaign=p_lico+share-sheet">GoFundMe</a></em></p>

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Face of mystery driver revealed in Claremont serial killer trial

<p>A mystery driver’s face who was seen creeping around a young woman the same night Sarah Spiers vanished, has been revealed to the jury in the Claremont serial killings trial.</p> <p>The never-before-seen composite was a description given to police over 21 years ago by Julie-Anne Johnstone.</p> <p>The man accused, Bradley Robert Edwards, sat just metres away from the woman during his trial after prosecutors accused the now 50-year-old of the murder of Sarah Spiers, Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon in the mid 1990’s.</p> <p>The former Telstra electrician has plead not guilty.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7833126/claremont-killer-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/a0aaaab1db8a48a9b07bf13b7a2d97b5" /></p> <p>Ms Spiers was last seen after calling a taxi from a phone box in Claremont, Western Australia, just one day after Australia day in 1996.</p> <p>The 18-year-old’s body has never been found.</p> <p>Julie-Anne Johnson, now 45, was just like Ms Spiers the night before when she left Club Bayview in the early hours of the morning to find a taxi by herself.</p> <p>Ms Johnson told the court she had been waiting on Stirling Highway when a white sedan pulled up in front of her.</p> <p>She says the male driver “leaned over the passenger’s side” and stared at her for 10 to 30 minutes.</p> <p>The woman admitted she wasn’t the best with distinguishing car models but determined the vehicle the man was driving looked like a Toyota Camry sedan and had a Telstra logo on the side of the door.</p> <p>Edwards was assigned the same model of car for his Telstra job at the time. </p> <p>Ms Johnson is one of a few several apparent “living witnesses” who survived Edward’s offering of lifts in the mid 90’s, prosecutors say.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7833127/claremont-killer-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/505a82c23aa146dc995bd0d9a319c7e8" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>Bradley Robert Edwards</em></p> <p>Annabel Johnson, 45, is another woman who says she was a passenger of a mystery man’s car.</p> <p>She says she had a “strong instinct” to force herself out of the vehicle after accepting a ride.</p> <p>Both she and her friends Trilby Smith hitched a ride after a night out in Cottesloe, Western Australia in December 1996, when a white station wagon approached them on Eric Street.</p> <p>She told the court they were walking home from the Ocean Beach Hotel when the white station wagon in question slowed down to them on Eric Street, and returned from the other direction sometime later.</p> <p>The court claims the driver offered them a ride which they accepted.</p> <p>Ms Bushell said the vehicle looked like a Commodore or Camry and had a large Telstra logo placed on the bonnet.</p> <p>She says she remembers approaching a traffic lights on Stirling Highway in Claremont and “just wanting to get out,” so made an excuse to quickly exit as she dragged her drunk friend out of the back seat.</p> <p>Trilby Smith’s memory differs to her friend who described the vehicle as an “electrical van” and getting out at a different part of Claremont.</p> <p>Ms Bushell said they'd had 15 to 29 middies of beer between them that evening, but her friend was more drunk than her and had fallen asleep. </p>

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Wife killer Borce Ristevski’s “total lack of remorse”

<p>Wife killer Borce Ristevski will spend more years in a jail cell over the senseless murder of his wife Karen.</p> <p>Ristevski has previously been handed a prison sentence of nine years but was ordered to serve a minimum of six years.</p> <p>It was a sentence that prosecutors labelled as “manifestly inadequate”.</p> <p>However, on Friday morning three judges from the Court of Appeal made a ruling on whether Ristevski deserved to be in prison for longer</p> <p>Chief Justice Anne Ferguson said this morning that his previous sentence had been set aside and he has since been sentenced to 13 years behind bars.</p> <p>His new non-parole period is now 10 years.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BwawtORhSVK/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BwawtORhSVK/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Dangerous Females (@dangerousfemales)</a> on Apr 18, 2019 at 6:09pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Ristevski, who appeared to the three judges via video link, sat emotionless with his arms folded as the judgement was read out.</p> <p>His and Karen’s daughter, Sarah Ristevski sat in the back row of the court gripping onto a scarf and left quickly after the decision was handed down.</p> <p>The young woman has always publicly supported her father but has rarely attended court. She did not attend the Court of Appeal hearing in November.</p> <p>Chief Justice Ferguson said Ristevski displayed a “total lack of remorse” for the murder of his wife.</p> <p>“His conduct after he killed his wife significantly aggravated his offending,” she said.</p> <p>“Ms Ristevski should have been safe in her own home.”</p> <p>The 55-year-old killed his wife Karen in June 2016 at the couple’s Avondale Heights home.</p> <p>He then drove with her body to the north of Melbourne to bushland at Mount Macedon where he dumped the body between two large logs.</p> <p>Karen was not to be discovered for eight long months while her husband lied to detectives and his own daughter about his involvement in her disappearance.</p> <p>Ristevski confessed to the killing on the eve of a Supreme Court trial this year but refuses to say why or how he killed his wife.</p> <p>Ristevski’s lawyer David Hallowes told the court his client was a good man last month.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BwaY1hoghgr/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BwaY1hoghgr/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Alyce Cooper Solicitor (@alycecoopersolicitor)</a> on Apr 18, 2019 at 2:40pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>“He was a man of good character,” he said to the court.</p> <p>“He was 55, had no prior convictions. Your honours have read the character reference of (his daughter) Sarah Ristevski. He contributed to society. He worked hard.”</p> <p>However, prosecutors say his silence should mean he pays a price.</p> <p>Prosecutor Brendan Kissane said that Ristevski’s silence was an indication of the seriousness of the killing to the court last month.</p> <p>“What silence means … when one puts all of that together … what one can say about what occurred in the house is that it must’ve been something significant,” he told the court.</p> <p>“What one concludes is that something bad must have happened in the house.”</p> <p>Mr Kissane said Ristevski’s lies that began immediately after he senselessly killed his wife should also be given greater weight.</p> <p>“That continues to this day,” Mr Kissane said.</p>

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Scott Morrison linked to controversial ‘miracles-for-money’ church

<p>A pastor linked to Prime Minister Scott Morrison has been accused of sexual misconduct in a controversial ‘miracles-for-money’ church.</p> <p>Pastor Anthony Shalala – who hosted then-Treasurer Morrison at the opening of a new church in 2016 – was paid a compensation of $300,000 to leave C3 Church following claims of sexual misconduct, <a rel="noopener" href="https://9now.nine.com.au/a-current-affair/c3-church-scott-morrison-link-to-scandal-former-pastor/6579a36b-5a9e-462d-bcd4-ccae869081d1" target="_blank"><em>A Current Affair</em></a> reported.</p> <p>In October, Shalala was revealed to have had affairs with three women parishioners. According to <a href="https://www.9news.com.au/national/c3-church-sex-scandals-politics-plans-revealed-a-current-affair-investigation/2ce53887-d08c-4664-9c68-eddba9129509">a former church member</a>, all of the women disappeared from the congregation afterwards.</p> <p>Shalala has since died.</p> <p>The church declined to comment on the payment.</p> <p>A spokesperson for Morrison said, “This is a tragic situation, in so many ways. But it is also a private matter for the family involved and the Prime Minister’s thoughts are with them at this difficult time.”</p> <p>C3 Church has come under fire after a number of former followers spoke up against the organisation.</p> <p>Kerri Ferguson said the church pressured followers to spend large amounts in tithes, even as she struggled to raise five kids on her own.</p> <p>“They call it a free will gift or free will giving, that simply isn’t true. You’re brainwashed into giving this kind of money,” she said.</p> <p>“There were nights in our house when my children did not have food. And I never got any assistance whatsoever from anybody.”</p> <p>Hayley Stewart said C3 pastor Mark Kelsey told her to stop taking prescribed anxiety medication and claimed to have removed her condition through a “deliverance” even though her symptoms did not ease.</p> <p>“I cannot stress enough that it is extremely dangerous for someone to tell someone who’s prescribed medication to stop their medication,” psychiatrist Dr Mark Cross told <em>A Current Affair</em>.</p>

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"No way back": How the confrontation between Prince Charles and Prince Andrew played out

<p>It appears that the Prince of Wales has had enough of the intense public scrutiny that surrounds his brother Prince Andrew and has “read him the riot act”.</p> <p>Virginia Giuffre piled on the pressure in her<span> </span><em>Panorama</em><span> </span>interview, where she alleged that Prince Andrew had sex with her when she was 17, which are allegations the Duke of York firmly denies.</p> <p>A royal insider told<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/10479374/prince-charles-prince-andrew-sandringham-showdown/" target="_blank">The Sun</a></em><span> </span>about how the confrontation went down between the two brothers.</p> <p>“It was all very civilised and calm, but Charles calmly read him the riot act and told him there was no way back for him in the near future,” they said.</p> <p>“Andrew thought he was being treated harshly as nothing has yet been proved against him, but he accepted the decision. He really had little choice.”</p> <p> The Prince of Wales is said to be deeply worried about the scandal and the impact its having on the monarchy.</p> <p>Options being explored include Prince Andrew going to the US to clear his name, but Prince Charles is hesitant to let that happen.</p> <p>“By doing that, Andrew would remove the mystery around the royal ­family. It’s a difficult predicament.</p> <p>“Philip regrets Andrew doesn’t know how to lead a simple life. He thinks he’s been too extravagant.”</p> <p>This comes after fresh claims that a woman who does not wish to be named approached US lawyer Lisa Bloom about seeing Prince Andrew at the nightclub Tramps with a fresh-faced Virginia Giuffre.</p> <p>Bloom told<span> </span><em>The Sun<span> </span></em>about the woman’s claims.</p> <p>“The woman remembers it vividly. She had never seen a royal before or since. It was a very big moment for her — she stared at him.</p> <p>“She says he was with Virginia — who looked very young and not happy — but Andrew was smiling and seemed to be very much enjoying himself on the dancefloor.</p> <p>“She is very afraid but thinks speaking out is very important.”</p>

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“You don’t take chances”: Scott Morrison reveals security fears for daughters after bikie gang crackdown

<p>Prime Minister Scott Morrison has gotten surprisingly candid about the security detail that was needed for his family when he expelled a key gang leader from Australia.</p> <p>In an exclusive interview with<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.skynews.com.au/details/_6112704392001" target="_blank">Sky News</a>,<span> </span></em>Morrison told Graeme “Richo” Richardson that an increase in security was needed after he banned Rebels bikie gang boss Alex Vella from the country.</p> <p>As Morrison was Immigration Minister at the time of the ban in 2014, he cancelled Vella’s visa three days after the bikie boss known as the “Maltese Falcon” left Australia for overseas.</p> <p>Richardson asked Scott Morrison and his wife Jenny if they ever stayed in the Sutherland Shire, but Morrison said that they didn’t.</p> <p>“The whole security bandwagon is, well, it’s quite inconvenient to my neighbours,” he said.</p> <p>He then went onto explain what happened when he moved on the Rebels gang boss in 2014.</p> <p>“When I was Immigration Minister we had, sadly, had to have full time security there for a quite long period of time...there was some amendment and changes made to the house at that time,” Mr Morrison said.</p> <p>“That was when we kicked out Vella, the head of the bikie gang.</p> <p>“And for some time we had, and even the kids on that occasion.</p> <p>“Now thankfully nothing came of that, but when you are dealing with outlaw motorcycle gang bosses, you don’t take chances.”</p> <p>At the time, Morrison’s daughters were four and six years old.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B12dXiyHwYD/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B12dXiyHwYD/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank">A post shared by Scott Morrison (@scottmorrisonmp)</a> on Aug 31, 2019 at 6:55pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>Vella had lived in Australia for decades and had a wife and children living in Sydney. However, he never became a citizen and is threatening a legal challenge to having his visa cancelled.</p> <p>Despite the Rebels gang boss and many of his friends and family raising money and campaigning for Vella’s, Morrison remains firm in his decision.</p> <p>“I stand by my decision to cancel his visa and I stand by the decision not to review that decision.</p> <p>“He is in Malta and according to our government’s policy, that’s where he will stay.</p> <p>“They can pursue this through the courts, and they will do that no doubt.</p> <p>“It is not the government’s plan or policy or demeanour to give this character a visa.</p> <p>“We cancelled the visa that Labor renewed when it came to Mr Vella and I stand by that 100 per cent.”</p>

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Israel Folau and Rugby Australia reach million dollar settlement

<p>Rugby Australia and disgraced sportsman Israel Folau have reportedly ended their bitter legal battle after months of back and forth, for a reported $8 million. </p> <p>According to reports, RA apologised to the former Wallabies fullback star in an out-of-court settlement on Wednesday to avoid a lengthy court battle. </p> <p>Folau, whose contract was terminated after writing “hell awaits” gay people, among others, in an Instagram post in April, was seeking $14 million in compensation. </p> <p>While the exact amount is still to be revealed, The Daily Telegraph reported Falou agreed to an $8 million settlement. </p> <p>Rugby Australia chief executive Raelene Castle told stakeholders the details of the settlement were confidential.</p> <p>“The terms of the settlement are confidential but importantly Israel's legal claim has been withdrawn and whilst we were very confident in our legal position, this outcome provides certainty for Rugby Australia and allows us to avoid incurring ongoing legal costs and the risks and distractions of a lengthy trial,” she said. </p> <p>RA maintains they firmly disagree with the post made by Folau in April.<span> </span></p> <p>Folau says he and his wife Maria feel “vindicated” by Wednesday’s settlement.</p> <p>“We are extremely pleased with the settlement reached today," Folau said in a video.</p> <p>“Maria and I would like to thank God for his guidance and strength,' he said.</p> <p>“Thank you to our supporters for their thoughts and prayers, in particular our families, our congregation as well as Martyn Iles and the Australian Christian Lobby.”</p> <p>Folau hopes their case will lead to greater religious freedom.  </p> <p>“We started this journey on behalf of all people of faith to protect their rights of freedom of speech and religion,” he said.</p> <p>“We now look forward to the federal government enacting the legislation necessary to further protect and strengthen these rights for all Australians.”</p> <p>Rugby Australia issued a statement where they said: “The social media post reflected Mr Folau's genuinely held religious beliefs, and Mr Folau did not intend to harm or offend any person when he uploaded the social media post.”</p> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7RPbOWqlA74" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Folau has released his own apology where he said he wants all Australians to know “that he does not condone discrimination of any kind against any person on the ground of their sexuality and that he shares Rugby Australia's commitment to inclusiveness and diversity.</p> <p>“Similarly, Mr Folau did not intend to hurt or harm the game of rugby and acknowledges and apologises for any hurt or harm caused.”</p> <p>While the former cross-coder footballer did not announce any plans to return to his beloved sport – he says he looks forward to “moving on with his life” to “focus on his faith”.</p> <p><strong>UPDATE:<span> </span></strong>Castle fronted media speculation on Thursday to refute the “wildly inaccurate” settlement amount reported. </p> <p>"Folau settlement numbers are confidential but numbers being speculated are wildly inaccurate," Castle said in a tweet on Thursday morning.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr">Folau settlement numbers are confidential but numbers being speculated are wildly inaccurate</p> — Raelene Castle (@raelenecastle) <a href="https://twitter.com/raelenecastle/status/1202322497661616128?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">December 4, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Castle further reiterated the nature of the settlement is strictly confidential and cannot be discussed in detail. </p> <p>"I can't talk about the settlement numbers, but we're in a better position than if we went to court," Castle said.</p> <p>"We had a number that we knew was more cost effective to us to settle."</p> <p>Castle said the decision was a "commercial decision" and a "normal process" aimed at avoiding the risk of paying more if court proceedings didn't go their way.</p> <p>"It allows us to not have the uncertainty of a trial," she told reporters.</p> <p>"We didn't get it wrong.</p> <p>"At the end of the day we stood up for the values of Rugby Australia of inclusiveness."</p> <p> </p>

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World leaders mock Donald Trump during NATO summit

<p>Donald Trump has slammed Canadian prime minister as “two-faced” after a video shared on Twitter revealed world leaders mocking the US president at the NATO anniversary celebration in London.</p> <p>In a video footage posted by the CBC, Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau appeared to be talking about Trump at a Buckingham Palace reception with French president Emmanuel Macron, British prime minister Boris Johnson and Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte.</p> <p>“He was late because he takes a 40-minute press conference at the top,” Trudeau could be heard saying, apparently alluding to Trump’s appearance before the press prior to the event.</p> <p>“You just watch his team’s jaws drop to the floor.”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">.<a href="https://twitter.com/JustinTrudeau?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JustinTrudeau</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/EmmanuelMacron?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@EmmanuelMacron</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/BorisJohnson?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@BorisJohnson</a> and other VIPs shared a few words at a Buckingham Palace reception Tuesday. No one mentions <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@realDonaldTrump</a> by name, but they seem to be discussing his lengthy impromptu press conferences from earlier in the day. (Video: Host Pool) <a href="https://t.co/dVgj48rpOP">pic.twitter.com/dVgj48rpOP</a></p> — Power &amp; Politics (@PnPCBC) <a href="https://twitter.com/PnPCBC/status/1202008162997538817?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">December 3, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Speaking in his closing news conference Wednesday, Trudeau confirmed that he had been talking about Trump and said the moment that made “his team’s jaws drop” was when the US president announced the location for next year’s G7 summit at Camp David.</p> <p>“Last night I made reference to the fact that there was an unscheduled press conference before my meeting with President Trump. I was happy to be part of it but it was certainly notable,” Trudeau said.</p> <p>When asked about the video during a meeting with German chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday, Trump slammed Trudeau as “two-faced” and criticised Canada for not meeting NATO’s 2 per cent defense spending target.</p> <p>“Well, he's two-faced ... he’s not paying 2 per cent and he should be paying 2 per cent. It’s Canada, they have money,” Trump said. “And honestly with Trudeau he’s a nice guy, but the truth is I called him out on the fact that he’s not paying 2 per cent and I guess he’s not very happy about it.”</p> <p>Spokespersons for Macron and Rutte have declined to comment on the matter.</p>

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“You’re lying”: Fury over “secret deal” between PM and Jacqui Lambie

<p>The Prime Minister has denied making a “secret deal” with Jacqui Lambie in order to repeal the controversial medevac bill.</p> <p>The bill allowed asylum seekers being held in offshore detention to be moved to Australia for medical treatment if a doctor deemed it necessary.</p> <p>Lambie tearfully announced in Parliament that she would support the repeal.</p> <p>"We've worked to an outcome I believe we both want, which is an outcome that our borders are secure, the boats have stopped and sick people aren't dying waiting for treatment," she said.</p> <p>However, she “can’t discuss” what went into the proposal as there are “national security concerns”.</p> <p>"I can't let the boats start back up and I can't let refugees die, whether it's sinking into the ocean or waiting for a doctor and I am voting to make sure that neither of these things happen,” Lambie continued.</p> <p>Just before the vote, which passed by a narrow 37 to 35 votes, Government Senate leader Mathias Cormann and Lambie were unable to agree what was said. Cormann told parliament that there was no deal but Lambie said that there was.</p> <p>The statement she gave in Parliament is a direct contradiction to the remarks made by the Prime Minister when he spoke to reporters in Canberra.</p> <p>A reporter asked Scott Morrison what the condition was for Jacqui Lambie’s approval, but Morrison refused to say.</p> <p>"I'm not sure what you are referring to in relation to her statements. I have the statements in front of me and I don't read that in her statements at all,” he said.</p> <p>Another reporter asked what proposal Lambie and the government had worked to advance, but Morrison had an answer for that as well.</p> <p>"It means she is happy with the government's policies and the bill that was presented to the Senate, and she voted for it," Mr Morrison said this afternoon, according to<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.9news.com.au/national/medevac-repeal-jacqui-lambie-secret-deal-with-coalition-says-labor-politics-news/58c88648-6284-4f41-9880-b47c66ab2471" target="_blank">9News</a>.</p> <p>It was<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/government-lambie-repeal-medevac-secret-deal-alleged-20191204-p53gms" target="_blank">previously reported<span> </span></a>that Lambie wanted the government to accept an offer from New Zealand to take 150 people who were permanently detained on Manus Island and Nauru to the nation. However, Morrison has rejected this.</p> <p>Labor and the Greens want the details of the “secret deal” to be known to the public.</p> <p>"There's some arrangement that the government has entered into with Senator Lambie that, through the course of this debate, the Australian people will not be made aware of,'' Greens leader Richard Di Natale said.</p> <p>"We won't know what has been decided in secret. That is not the way a parliament works. It's not the way a government should work."</p> <p>Labor’s Senate leader Penny Wong agreed.</p> <p>"At the moment we have Cabinet ministers in here like lemmings to vote for a bill on a deal you haven't seen," Senator Wong said.</p> <p>"Members of the Cabinet of Australia are coming in to vote on a deal that's been done with Senator Jacqui Lambie, that they don't even know about.”</p>

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“Profoundly disrespectful”: Shock as George Pell supporters are told to write him a Christmas card

<p>British Deacon Nick Donnelly has asked supporters of convicted paedophile Cardinal George Pell to send him Christmas cards in jail.</p> <p>He asked his followers on Twitter to send Pell letters to his prison cell.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">Please show your support for Cardinal Pell by sending him a Christmas card<br /><br />Here's his address<br /><br />DO NOT address his envelope as 'Cardinal Pell' or it will be refused <a href="https://t.co/jsKxvBNofb">pic.twitter.com/jsKxvBNofb</a></p> — Nick Donnelly (@ProtecttheFaith) <a href="https://twitter.com/ProtecttheFaith/status/1201385480178282496?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">December 2, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>"Please show your support for Cardinal Pell by sending him a Christmas card," he wrote alongside a screenshot of an address.</p> <p>Donnelly also says that anyone who sends a letter should “NOT address his envelope as ‘Cardinal Pell’ or it will be refused”.</p> <p>Donnelly also said that gifts of $15 would be accepted.</p> <p>The message has drawn criticism from other Twitter users who labelled the move "profoundly disrespectful.</p> <p>It also drew criticism from Melbourne-based victim support group In Good Faith Foundation.</p> <p>Chief Executive Officer Clare Leaney said to<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://7news.com.au/news/religion-and-belief/george-pell-supporters-told-to-write-christmas-cards-to-convicted-paedophile-c-587870" target="_blank">7News.com.au</a></em><span> </span>that she hopes no victims of sexual abuse saw the Tweet.</p> <p>"For a lot of survivors of abuse, there is no holiday period," she said.</p> <p>"That's been taken away from them.</p> <p>"These are people that have lost their faith and their connection to the church and I think the festive season reinforces the isolation some people can have."</p> <p>Pell is currently preparing to spend his first Christmas period behind bars after being jailed for six years with a non-parole period of three years and eight months.</p> <p>However, he is waiting to appeal his conviction in the High Court, which is expected to happen sometime next year.</p> <p>Leaney says that the constant rehashing of the case could be stressful for victims.</p> <p>"I think that for everyone, the impact of childhood abuse and particularly in a religious context, it’s unquantifiable," she said.</p> <p>"For all our clients, they identify it as the worst moment of their lives."</p>

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Donald Trump denies knowing Prince Andrew as royals gather for NATO reception

<p>The royal family has welcomed US president Donald Trump and his wife Melania at Buckingham Palace.</p> <p>Queen Elizabeth II was joined by her children and other royal family members as she hosted a reception for NATO leaders at the palace on Tuesday night. Prince Andrew was notably absent amid growing controversy surrounding the scandal involving sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.</p> <p>In a press conference in London prior to the reception, Trump denied knowing Prince Andrew despite being photographed with him on several occasions.</p> <p>“I don’t know Prince Andrew. It’s a tough story, it’s a very tough story,” Trump said. “I don’t know him.”</p> <p>The two men were pictured together in 2000 with Trump’s then-girlfriend Melania Knauss and Epstein at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.</p> <p>In June this year, the Duke of York shared on his Twitter account about a breakfast meeting he attended with Trump during the president’s state visit to the UK.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">🇬🇧🇺🇸On Day 2 of the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/USStateVisit?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#USStateVisit</a>, The Duke of York &amp; Prime Minister <a href="https://twitter.com/theresamay?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TheresaMay</a> welcome President Donald Trump <a href="https://twitter.com/POTUS?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@POTUS</a> to St James’s Palace for a UK/US Senior Business Leaders Group Breakfast Meeting. <a href="https://t.co/NfvniwmQKX">pic.twitter.com/NfvniwmQKX</a></p> — The Duke of York (@TheDukeOfYork) <a href="https://twitter.com/TheDukeOfYork/status/1135851552495865857?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">June 4, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Prince Andrew, the second son of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, stepped down from his royal duties last month after his interview with the BBC was widely criticised for failing to address his longtime relationship with Epstein.</p> <p>In an interview aired in the UK on Monday, Virginia Giuffre reiterated her allegation that she was trafficked to have sex with the prince on three occasions between 2001 and 2002.</p> <p>“This is not some sordid sex story,” Giuffre said. “This is a story of being trafficked, this is a story of abuse and this is a story of your guys’ royalty.”</p> <p>Buckhingham Palace denied her allegations. “It is emphatically denied that The Duke of York had any form of sexual contact or relationship with Virginia Roberts. Any claim to the contrary is false and without foundation,” the palace said in a statement to <em><a href="https://edition.cnn.com/2019/12/03/politics/donald-trump-prince-andrew-photos/index.html">CNN</a></em>.</p>

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New damning images of Prince Andrew with Jeffrey Epstein and girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell

<p>Damning new images show Prince Andrew alongside Jeffrey Epstein and “madam” Ghislaine Maxwell at the Ascot races in 2000.</p> <p>The discovery was shown on the BBC program<span> </span>Panorama<span> </span>as Virginia Giuffre shared details of how she allegedly had sex with Prince Andrew three times in 2001 and 2002 when she was just 17 years old.</p> <p>The photos show the trio wearing fancy racewear and hats, laughing and smiling at the event.</p> <p>The outing was at a time where Prince Andrew claimed that he was seeing Epstein once or twice a year.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7833003/body-andrew.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/16bba459eef34179adc01ec1d753136a" /></p> <p>Prince Andrew had been introduced to Epstein months earlier by Maxwell, and the couple attended Windsor Castle for the Prince’s 40th birthday.</p> <p>Prince Andrew has constantly denied the allegations from Giuffre and hasn’t been seen in public since Epstein’s death, which was ruled as a suicide.</p> <p><strong>Bombshell emails uncovered in Panorama documentary</strong></p> <p>In the BBC documentary, emails between Prince Andrew and Ghislaine Maxwell were uncovered and have thrown doubt on his claims that he did not recall meeting Virginia Giuffre in 2001.</p> <p>Giuffre alleges that she was trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein and was forced to have sex with Prince Andrew.</p> <div class="embed-responsive embed-responsive-16by9"><iframe class="embed-responsive-item" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CYTrKvQI0sQ"></iframe></div> <div class="embed-responsive embed-responsive-16by9"> <p>An email that was aired on Panorama after being found buried in thousands of pages of legal documents shows that Maxwell and Prince Andrew discussed Guiffre at one point in 2015.</p> <p>“Let me know when we can talk. Got some specific questions to ask you about Virginia Roberts,” Prince Andrew wrote to Maxwell.</p> <p>She replies: “Have some info – call me when you have a moment.”</p> <p>Panorama<span> </span>reported that three days letter, Prince Andrew was sent a “dossier of inconsistences and inaccuracies in articles” about Giuffre.</p> <p><strong>Virginia Giuffre recalls night she was given order to have sex with Queen’s son</strong></p> <p>The documentary included an interview with Giuffre, who recalled the night she met Prince Andrew as they went to a nightclub.</p> <p>“It was horrible, and this guy was sweating all over me, I mean his sweat … it was raining, basically, everywhere … and I was just grossed out from it,” she said.</p> <p>“But I knew I had to keep him happy because that’s what Jeffrey (Epstein) and Ghislaine (Maxwell) would expect from me.”</p> <p>She also explained that it was in the car ride to Maxwell’s London home that she was told to have sex with Prince Andrew.</p> <p>“In the car, Ghislaine tells me that I have to do for Andrew what I do for Jeffrey — and that just made me sick,” she told the BBC.</p> <p>“I just didn’t expect it from royalty. I didn’t expect it from someone people look up to and admire in the royal family.”</p> <p>Giuffree goes into explicit detail of the night that she alleges she was made to have sex with Prince Andrew.</p> <p>“It was disgusting. He wasn’t mean or anything,” she said.</p> <p>“He got up and he said ‘thanks’ and walked out and I just sat there in bed, just horrified and ashamed and felt dirty and had to get up and have a shower,” she explained.</p> <p>Giuffre also explained the impact that having sex with the Queen’s son had on her mental health.</p> <p>“It was a wicked time in my life, it was a really scary time. I had just been abused by a member of a royal family — so when you talk about these chains, yeah, I wasn’t chained to the sink, but these powerful people were my chains. I didn’t know what could happen.</p> <p>“I couldn’t comprehend how in the highest levels of the government, powerful people were allowing this to happen. Not only allowing it to happen but participating in it.”</p> <p><strong>Prince Andrew declines to answer questions from BBC</strong></p> <p>The documentary explained that the BBC reached out with detailed questions to Prince Andrew, but he declined to answer. However, a statement was provided to the organisation.</p> <p>“The Duke of York unequivocally regrets his ill-judged association with Jeffrey Epstein. Epstein’s suicide left many unanswered questions, particularly for his victims,” the statement said.</p> <p>“The duke deeply sympathises with those affected who want some form of closure.</p> <p>“It is his hope that, in time, they will be able to rebuild their lives. The duke is willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required.”</p> </div>

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Outrage as Tony Abbott visits “friend” Cardinal George Pell in jail

<p>Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott has caused outrage after he visited Cardinal George Pell in jail, where he is being held on child sex convictions.</p> <p>Abbott has not been shy about his praise for the 78-year-old Catholic senior and admitted to previously calling his long-time friend after Pell was found guilty.</p> <p><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://7news.com.au/news/george-pell/former-prime-minister-tony-abbott-drops-by-to-see-convicted-paedophile-george-pell-in-melbourne-prison-c-585274" target="_blank">Seven News</a></em><span> </span>reported that the pair were reunited during a prison visit in Melbourne.</p> <p>“Look, I was simply visiting a friend,” he told a waiting reporter. “That’s all.”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott says he was just visiting a friend (convicted child sex offender Cardinal George Pell) at the Melbourne Assessment Prison. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/7NewsMelb?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#7NewsMelb</a> <a href="https://t.co/UN8GHURD4F">pic.twitter.com/UN8GHURD4F</a></p> — Brendan Donohoe (@BrendanDonohoe7) <a href="https://twitter.com/BrendanDonohoe7/status/1201393275585744896?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">2 December 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Abbott declined to answer other questions as he got into a taxi.</p> <p>Pell was found guilty of five convictions for molesting two choirboys 22 years ago.</p> <p>He initially was sentences to six years behind bars but has had his bid to appeal the conviction granted by the High Court of Australia.</p> <p>Abbott has been a long-time supporter of Pell and reluctantly admitted in an interview with<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.2gb.com/tony-abbott-admits-he-phoned-friend-george-pell-on-the-same-day-guilty-verdict-revealed/" target="_blank">journalist Ben Fordham</a><span> </span>that he called Pell after he was found guilty.</p> <p>“It was a call I put into him, yes I spoke to him,” Mr Abbott admitted.</p> <p>Fordham asked if he would consider his support if Pell was found guilty, but Abbott said that they should see what the appeal court finds.</p> <p>“Well he’s been found guilty by a court of a horrible crime, an absolutely horrible crime,” he said.</p> <p>“Let’s see what the appeal court finds. It’s a shocking and devastating result.”</p> <p><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.2gb.com/ray-hadley-slams-john-howard-and-tony-abbotts-gross-errors-of-judgement/" target="_blank">Ray Hadley</a><span> </span>also grilled Abbott over whether or not he provided a character reference for Pell.</p> <p>“I honestly don’t know whether I was asked to provide a reference or not. I have no recall of being asked to provide a reference,” Mr Abbott said.</p> <p>“When it comes to the phone call, look, I’m not a fair weather friend. This was someone who was obviously going through a very, very bad experience. Now I’m not saying that he’s the only one going through bad experiences, but he has been a friend of mine for a long time, and at a time like this you’ve got to feel for people,” Abbott explained.</p> <p>“You’ve got to feel for the victims, who’ve been dreadfully betrayed by an institution they should have been able to trust. You’ve got to feel for the people who are dismayed by this verdict against someone they’d put up on a pedestal.”</p>

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Magda Szubanski slams nurse for tweeting about her hospital visit

<p>Magda Szubanski said she was left feeling “very vulnerable and unsafe” after a person claiming to be a nurse posted online about her recent hospital stay.</p> <p>The <em>Kath &amp; Kim </em>star, who recently underwent an operation, expressed her outrage after finding a Twitter post from a medical professional who claimed to have looked after her.</p> <p>“Post-op is an extremely vulnerable time and I think your employers would be very concerned for the privacy of any patients in your “care”,” the 58-year-old wrote in response to the tweet, which has now been deleted.</p> <p>“I have to say it was quite upsetting to find that in my feed. Made me feel very vulnerable and unsafe.</p> <p>“I bloody love nurses and medical professionals and am a huge supporter of their rights. I wanted to be a doctor when I was young. But I have to say this has quite shaken me up. The thought that I’m not safe at my most vulnerable.”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">By the way which hospital was this? Post-op is an extremely vulnerable time and I think your employers would be very concerned for the privacy of any patients in your “care” <a href="https://t.co/MnTC2Yx9zR">https://t.co/MnTC2Yx9zR</a></p> — Magda Szubanski AO (@MagdaSzubanski) <a href="https://twitter.com/MagdaSzubanski/status/1199472550675283968?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 26, 2019</a></blockquote> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">Thanks. I have to say it was quite upsetting to find that in my feed. Made me feel very vulnerable and unsafe. 🙏🏻🙏🏻 <a href="https://t.co/OF5gxU04kc">https://t.co/OF5gxU04kc</a></p> — Magda Szubanski AO (@MagdaSzubanski) <a href="https://twitter.com/MagdaSzubanski/status/1199478929943252992?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 27, 2019</a></blockquote> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">I bloody love nurses and medical professionals and am a huge supporter of their rights. I wanted to be a doctor when I was young. But I have to say this has quite shaken me up. The thought that I’m not safe at my most vulnerable <a href="https://t.co/wDgA8UH25Y">https://t.co/wDgA8UH25Y</a></p> — Magda Szubanski AO (@MagdaSzubanski) <a href="https://twitter.com/MagdaSzubanski/status/1199501224153796608?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 27, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Following an outpouring of support from her fans and followers, Szubanski said she would follow the matter up “through the appropriate channels” if she decided to do so.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">Everyone I so appreciate your support but if I decide to follow this matter up it will be done properly through the appropriate channels. 🙏🏻</p> — Magda Szubanski AO (@MagdaSzubanski) <a href="https://twitter.com/MagdaSzubanski/status/1199539520548376577?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 27, 2019</a></blockquote>

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“He was so angry”: Elton John stuns concertgoers with onstage rant

<p>Sir Elton John surprised fans with a foul-mouthed tirade at “moron” security guards during his concert in Perth on Sunday night.</p> <p>He was in Perth performing on his<span> </span>Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour, but halfway through his three-hour concert, John spotted a woman being removed from the concert by security guards.</p> <p>He stopped the show and demanded the lady be returned to her seat.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">**Warning - Explicit**<br /><br />"You don't treat girls like that!" &lt;3 Elton<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/EltonJohn?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#EltonJohn</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Perth?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Perth</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/perthnews?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#perthnews</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/nsfwtwitter?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#nsfwtwitter</a> <br />**Not my footage <a href="https://t.co/F9pHLHaRLj">pic.twitter.com/F9pHLHaRLj</a></p> — Nokternl (@Nokternl) <a href="https://twitter.com/Nokternl/status/1201194991315349505?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">1 December 2019</a></blockquote> <p>“Hey, you two security guards with the girl … F**k off,” Elton can be heard saying in a video doing the rounds on social media. “Let her up here immediately … come on, you c**ts.</p> <p>“Morons, both of you, morons. You don’t treat girls like that. Leave her alone you turds!”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"> <p dir="ltr">Elton John just called out venue security guards live on stage for aggressively accosting a fan at his Perth show.<br /><br />“You don’t treat girls like that.”<br /><br />What a legend 💕 <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/EltonFarewellTour?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#EltonFarewellTour</a> <a href="https://t.co/wN387iGKoA">pic.twitter.com/wN387iGKoA</a></p> — Lucy Thomas 🌈 (@lucylockit_) <a href="https://twitter.com/lucylockit_/status/1201129110409334786?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">1 December 2019</a></blockquote> <p>It is currently unknown why the woman was being removed from the concert.</p> <p>Channel 9 presenter Louise Momber was in the crowd and spoke to the<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.smh.com.au/culture/music/elton-john-unleashes-c-bomb-at-security-at-perth-concert-20191202-p53fxk.html" target="_blank">Sydney Morning Herald</a><span> </span>that the singer apologised his outburst.</p> <p>“He was so angry,” Momber said. “He said he can’t stand violence against women and had to say something.</p> <p>“He sang the next song and then immediately apologised for his rant — but said it’s something he’s really passionate about.</p> <p>"It was certainly a side of Sir Elton I'd never seen before.</p> <p>"One of the biggest music stars in the world – and he took on Perth security guards."</p>

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“It was do or die”: Man tells of pulling family from burning car

<p>A man and his co-worker who saved a family from a burning car says that he was running on “pure adrenaline”.</p> <p>Mark Greenhalgh and his co-worker pulled the family from a crash that resulted in the death of a 12 year old girl in central Queensland.</p> <p>"I don't know what was going through my head, I am still lost for words today because I have never seen anything like that," he said.</p> <p>"It was do or die. I realised these people were going to die if I didn't do anything. I just got into the car and adrenaline set in, I suppose."</p> <p>Mark and Peter were stopped along an intersection when Mark lifted his hand to wave at a truck that was stopped. It was here that the station wagon slammed into the back of the truck.</p> <p>"As soon as we got side-by-side with the truck, we saw the car just run straight into the a*** of it," Mr Greenhalgh told<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/girl-dies-by-road-after-car-bursts-into-flames-near-mackay-20191201-p53fpk.html" target="_blank"><em>Brisbane Times</em></a>. "There was no screeching of tyres, just bang. We got covered in glass," he said.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2F7NEWSMackay%2Fphotos%2Fa.689409674416076%2F2838424812847874%2F%3Ftype%3D3&amp;width=500" width="500" height="516" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></p> <p>Greenhalgh did a U-turn and came back to help the people involved in the accident.</p> <p>"By the time we got back, the car was alight, the bonnet was up and the flames were all through the roof," he said to<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.msn.com/en-au/news/australia/it-was-do-or-die-hero-tells-of-pulling-family-from-burning-car/ar-BBXzUYJ?li=AAgfLCP" target="_blank">MSN</a>.</em></p> <p>"The bonnet was all crumpled up and you could see the top of the motor. The flames were higher than me. There was no way in the world we could put it out."</p> <p>With the help of the truck driver and Peter, the woman and the two children were out of the car within five minutes of the crash.</p> <p>"My mate and the truck driver ended up getting the little boy free and he was out first. He was awake and moving," he said.</p> <p>"I was focused on the driver because she was stuck pretty bad, she had a gash to the knee."</p> <p>However, the 12-year-old girl that was pulled from the crash did not survive.</p> <p>"The little girl was unconscious. We got her out but she never woke up.</p> <p>"The mum was obviously in hysterics, she was trying to get the little girl to wake up and kept asking where her boy was.</p> <p>"She [the girl] wasn't moving at all, she looked like she was sleeping. It was terrible."</p> <p>A police statement was issued by Queensland Police confirming the passing of the girl.</p> <p>"The three occupants escaped from the car," the statement read. "A 12-year-old girl suffered critical injuries and was declared deceased at the scene.</p> <p>"The female driver and nine-year-old boy were transported to Mackay Hospital with minor injuries."</p>

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Prince Charles plans to “boot several royals” when he becomes King

<p>According to recent reports from<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/kingprincecharlesto-kick-out-more-royal-20989538" target="_blank">The Daily Star</a>, Prince Charles, 71, has plans to boot several royals out of the Royal Family when he becomes King.</p> <p>It is said that he wants to cut the number of working royals to the bare minimum after the fallout of the Prince Andrew scandal.</p> <p>The scandal, which thrust Prince Andrew’s friendship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, has people now paying attention to Prince Charles’ plans.</p> <p>Royal experts have said that Prince Charles s moving forward with his plans for a reduced working monarchy.</p> <p>Brittani Barger, deputy editor of Royal Central, spoke to<span> </span>The Daily Star<span> </span>about the plans.</p> <p>“I think the Andrew crisis has definitely strengthened Prince Charles's desire for a slimmed-down monarchy,” she said.</p> <p>“Prince Andrew is now out of the picture. I don't see him ever undertaking royal duties again, and any hope that his daughters would is now gone.</p> <p>“So the process of slimming the monarchy has already begun as we know Charles was pushing his mother to meet with Andrew and have him step back from his royal duties.”</p> <p>Barger thinks that the future working monarchy will be Charles, his children and his grandchildren.</p> <p>“I think when it's all said and done, the monarchy will be Charles and his children and grandchildren.</p> <p>“Of course, a valid argument could be made for keeping the Princess Royal as a working royal considering how hard-working she is.</p> <p>“However, I see her and the Wessexes continuing to visit patronages and all under the reign of Charles like the Kents and Glouchesters have done under The Queen's reign - as non-working royals.”</p> <p>Charlie Proctor, editor of Royal Central, says that the crisis has strengthened the desire for a smaller monarchy.</p> <p>“I should imagine there were plenty of people sceptical of reports that Prince Charles wanted a slimmed down monarchy when he became king,” he told Daily Star Online.</p> <p>“It was widely thought that his siblings and other extended members of The Royal Family provided valuable work, so might have been opposed by some.</p> <p>"It is still true that the extended royals perform valuable work. Princess Anne and the Earl &amp; Countess of Wessex for example are some of the hardest working royals, and a slimmed down monarchy would see them as casualties.”</p> <p>Proctor said public support has shot up after the BBC Newsnight interview.</p> <p>“However, since the Prince Andrew debacle and the events surrounding his Newsnight interview, I should imagine support for a slimmed-down monarchy have shot up overnight.</p> <p>"For all the positive work royals do in their line of work, it takes only one incident for everything to unravel.</p> <p>“Prince Andrew would probably have been sidelined during King Charles’s reign anyhow, but his expulsion from public duties has now been sped up.</p> <p>"Charles only wants his immediate family conducting engagements. This consists of himself, Camilla, William, Kate, Harry &amp; Meghan. In time, the Cambridge children will also become part of ‘The Firm’.”</p>

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17-year-old girl dies in horror crash after car bursts into flames

<p>A New Zealand teenager has passed away in a horror crash that left her trapped inside the vehicle before it burst into flames.</p> <p>Tayla Alexander, 17, was in a Suburu hatchback before it rolled down a bank and caught on fire on Summit Road in Christchurch. The accident happened at 11 pm on a Wednesday night.</p> <p>She was driving with three other teenagers, who were all injured and taken to hospital to be treated.</p> <p>At least six people tried to rescue those trapped inside the car before it burst into flames.</p> <p>Friends and family of the teenager have remembered Tayla as a “beautiful” girl that was taken far too soon.</p> <p>“She put her heart on her sleeve,” a friend who wished to remain anonymous told<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/117769916/one-dead-and-another-critical-following-crash-in-christchurch" target="_blank">Stuff</a></em>.</p> <p>“She was a beautiful girl and she's going to be terribly missed.”</p> <p>"I think that's the hard thing about being from a small town, everyone knows everyone, so from this event so many people are going to [be] affected."</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fphoto.php%3Ffbid%3D1392281904282064%26set%3Da.102808339896100%26type%3D3&amp;width=500" width="500" height="561" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></p> <p>Kevin Clark, who was driving along the road at the time of the accident, said that the road has a “horrible corner”.</p> <p>"It was right on that bend; it's a horrible corner as it is. I've always taken it stupidly slow because I've always thought people [will] go off it if they go too quick around it."</p> <p>Clark also stopped to help rescue those who were trapped in the car.</p> <p>"All of the people there were trying to put out the fire and doing all they could to help the people out." <span> </span></p> <p>In New Zealand, 303 people have died on the roads this year so far alone.</p> <p><em>Photo credit: <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1392281904282064&amp;set=a.102808339896100&amp;type=3&amp;theater" target="_blank">Facebook</a></em></p>

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Freed Taliban hostage Timothy Weeks returns to Australia

<p><span>Australian teacher Timothy Weeks has returned home to Australia after being held captive by the Taliban for more than three years.</span></p> <p><span>50-year-old Weeks landed in Sydney on Thursday night after his release was secured as a part of a prisoner swap negotiated between the Taliban and the US, Australian and Afghan governments. According to the <em>ABC</em>, the swap was aimed at restarting talks to end Afghanistan’s 18-year war and allow the US troops to withdraw from the country.</span></p> <p><span>Weeks and his 63-year-old American colleague Kevin King were freed on November 20 in exchange for three members of the Taliban.</span></p> <p><span>He flew home after spending days at a US military base in Germany receiving medical care.</span></p> <p><span>“I am very pleased to confirm that Tim has returned to Australia and very much welcome his return,” Foreign Minister Marise Payne told <em><a href="https://www.msn.com/en-au/news/australia/australian-timothy-weeks-lands-in-australia-after-three-years-in-taliban-captivity/ar-BBXu8Kd">AM</a></em>.</span></p> <p><span>“It has been an extraordinarily long three years for him and for his family.”</span></p> <p><span>Weeks and King were abducted at gunpoint in August 2016 outside the American University in Kabul, Afghanistan where they both worked as English teachers.</span></p> <p><span>In one of <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/nov/29/freed-taliban-prisoner-timothy-weeks-returns-to-australia" target="_blank">the two videos released the following year</a>, King and Weeks pleaded with the Australian and US governments to negotiate with the Taliban to secure their release by June 2017.</span></p> <p><span>The Weeks family released a statement asking for privacy following his release.</span></p> <p><span>“Our family is overjoyed that Tim has been released after more than three years in captivity,” the statement said. “We thank our friends and extended family for their love and support over the past three years during this very difficult time.</span></p> <p><span>“While we understand the intense public interest in Tim’s release, we do not want to comment further. We ask that the media respect both our and Tim’s privacy. It is important that Tim now be given the time and space to start to come to terms with his experience.”</span></p>

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More than 150,000 Telstra customers entitled to refund

<p>More than 150,000 Telstra mobile broadband customers may be eligible for a refund as the telco admitted that it failed to send them data usage warnings.</p> <p>The issue, which was addressed by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), said that warning messages were sent by SMS to accounts that were not connected to a mobile phone number to receive them.</p> <p>This resulted in customers going over their monthly data limit and paying extra usage charges as they had no idea they were over their limit.</p> <p>The problem shockingly occurred for almost six years, between September 2013 and May this year.</p> <p>Telstra self-reported to ACMA that it failed to send warnings over email so that all customers could see them.</p> <p>"Consumers have a right to make informed decisions about their broadband use, and by failing to send these notifications in the correct format people have had to pay excess usage charges without sufficient warning," said ACMA chair Nerida O'Loughlin to<em> <a rel="noopener" href="https://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/150000-telstra-customers-could-get-a-refund-001455957.html" target="_blank">Yahoo!</a>.</em></p> <p>"The [Telecommunications Consumer Protections Code] requires suppliers to send notifications within 48 hours of customers reaching specified data usage quotas on post-paid internet plans."</p> <p>Telstra has automatically refunded customers who complained about excess charges or were hit with excess fees of $5 or less.</p> <p>The company has also reached out to other customers who may claim a refund via an online form.</p> <p>"We encourage current or former Telstra mobile broadband customers to contact Telstra for a refund if they believe they incurred excess usage charges as a result of not receiving a usage notification," said O'Loughlin. </p>

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