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SharecloseShare pageCopy linkAbout sharingImage source, MerckThe first pill designed to treat symptomatic Covid has been approved by the UK medicines regulator. The tablet – molnupiravir – will be given twice a day to vulnerable patients recently diagnosed with the disease. In clinical trials the pill, originally developed to treat flu, cut the risk of hospitalisation or death by about half. Health secretary Sajid Javid said the treatment was a “gamechanger” for the most frail and immunosuppressed.In a statement he said: “Today is a historic day for our country, as the UK is now the first country in the world to…

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SharecloseShare pageCopy linkAbout sharingThe government will rethink its plans to overhaul the policing of MPs’ conduct after a furious backlash.On Wednesday, No 10 backed a shake-up of the standards watchdog and blocked the suspension of one of its own former ministers, Owen Paterson.But it led to accusations of sleaze, with Labour saying the Tories just wanted to “let off one of their own”.Leader of the House Jacob Rees-Mogg has now confirmed the changes will not go ahead without cross-party support. He told the Commons there was a “strong feeling” that any change to the standards process “should not be based…

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SharecloseShare pageCopy linkAbout sharingImage source, PA MediaHollyoaks actress Sarah Jayne Dunn, who plays Mandy in the Channel 4 soap, has been dropped after refusing to remove photos from an adult subscription site.Dunn, who first appeared on the show in 1996, recently said she was putting her “sexier, racier” photos on OnlyFans.She said the move was “about empowerment and confidence and having full power over my choices”.But Hollyoaks said it was not in line with its target audience and it did not allow cast members to sell such photos.”Hollyoaks is a youth-facing drama with many young viewers, who follow our cast…

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The July 2020 incident is the first known case of a “modified unmanned aircraft system likely being used in the United States to specifically target energy infrastructure,” states the October 28 memo from the FBI, Department of Homeland Security and the National Counterterrorism Center. That statement is based on a review of drone incidents dating back to 2017.No damage was done to the electricity supply or equipment, according to the memo. It is still unclear who was responsible for operating the drone that crashed on a rooftop near the unidentified substation.Federal officials say they are distributing the intelligence bulletin now…

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United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, center, holds a news conference about a joint investigation into the year-long war in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region on November 3 in Geneva, Switzerland. On the left is Maarit Kohonen Sheriff, chief of the UN’s Africa Branch, and to the right is Françoise Mianda, the UN’s section chief of East and Southern Africa. (Martial Trezzini/Keystone/AP)The United Nations on Wednesday condemned possible “war crimes” uncovered in a joint investigation into the bloody year-long war in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region.The highly anticipated report was published almost a year to the day since…

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SharecloseShare pageCopy linkAbout sharingImage source, Getty ImagesElectronics retailer Currys has announced that it is teaming up with ride-hailing service Uber to deliver products in 30 minutes.Under the trial service, customers in 12 London boroughs will be able to order items such as laptops and printer cartridges, with a £5 delivery charge.The trial begins on 15 November and will last for three months.Currys said the 1,800 products on offer all weighed under 7kg and could fit within a courier’s bag.With size dimensions limited to about L46cm x W35cm x D35cm, Currys said the biggest item available for super-fast delivery would be, for example, a coffee machine.Customers can order through the Currys website or app up to two hours before stores close.”The world has shifted to a hybrid way of working and more customers are demanding greater convenience and speedier delivery to get their hands on tech,” said Currys’ chief operating officer, Mark Allsop.The move echoes the same-day and one-hour delivery options available at the major UK supermarkets and Amazon.Currys said the venture, which will operate from 15 London stores, was Uber’s biggest UK retailer partnership to date. Eve Henrickson, Uber regional manager, said the company looks “forward to expanding the partnership further”, but gave no more details about future plans.Co-op to start selling groceries on Amazon PrimeShopping in 10 minutes: The new supermarket battleAnnouncement of the deal was made alongside the release of Currys’ latest trading update. Sales in the six months to the end of October were up 15% on a like-for-like basis on the same period two years ago, before the Covid-19 crisis.However, the retailer revealed business remains 1% below the same period a year ago, when demand soared as households looked to update their in-home technology whilst stuck inside during the various lockdowns.There was strong growth in electrical goods, which offset a fall in mobile phone sales. Currys also played down any concerns over supply chain issues and staff shortages, saying it had “put in place measures to mitigate the well-publicised” disruption across the UK.The company was confident enough in its prospects that it also announced plans to hand back £75m to shareholders through a share buyback, news that sent the share price rising 5% in early trading.

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The study published Wednesday in the journal The Lancet estimates that by mid-2019, there were 450 fewer cases of cervical cancer and 17,200 fewer cases of pre-cancers than expected in the vaccinated population.Researchers at Kings College London and the British government looked at population-based cancer registry data in the UK between January 2006 and June 2019 for seven groups of women, comparing those who were vaccinated to those who were not. They were looking at data covering the Cervarix vaccine, which protects against two strains of cancer-causing human papillomavirus or HPV. Newer vaccines sold under the Gardasil brand protect against…

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Trump has asked the DC District Court to block the National Archives from giving more than 700 pages of documents to the House Select Committee investigating January 6. He’s claimed the House’s investigation is illegitimate, and that his role as a former President should give him control over reviewing and deciding upon access to the records. The hearing may be the pivotal moment in a potentially historic legal fight about the authority of a former president, the House’s investigative power and the reach of executive privilege. It is set to begin at 11 a.m. ET.In the short term, the case…

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Reports that the Russians are moving military hardware some 250 kilometers from the border have raised eyebrows in Washington. And Ukrainian forces have deployed combat drones along the battle lines that separate them from pro-Russian separatists in the Donbas region. The front lines of the conflict — a standoff stretching hundreds of miles from northern Ukraine to the Sea of Azov — have barely moved in five years. On Monday, US Defense Department spokesman Admiral John Kirby said the Pentagon was “aware of public reports of unusual Russian military activity near Ukraine.” Satellite imagery has shown Russian hardware — including…

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Image source, Getty ImagesAt a glanceSainsbury’s says it is in a “good position” despite supply chain challengesHalf-year profits hit £541m after £137m loss last yearSupermarket says online sales have “remained strong”Sainsbury’s says it is in a “good position” ahead of Christmas amid worker and supply chain challenges.
The supermarket said its size, logistics operations and supplier relationships put it in good stead.
It announced profits of £541m for the 28 weeks to the end of September, bouncing back from a statutory loss of £137m for the same period last year.
Simon Roberts, chief executive, said many customers were returning to pre-pandemic shopping habits.
“Online sales have remained very strong and we continue to grow market share. At the same time, our plan to transform Argos is on track, delivering significantly improved profitability,” he said.
Grocery sales grew by 0.8% compared with the same period last year and were up 9.1% on two years ago.
The supermarket has forecast a pre-tax profit of at least £660m in the financial year to March 2022.Mr Roberts said the company was making “good progress” but admitted the supermarket industry still faced “labour and supply chain challenges”.”However our scale, advanced cost saving programme, logistics operations and strong supplier relationships put us in a good position as we head into Christmas,” he added.
Staff at Sainsbury’s and Argos stores have been given Boxing Day off this year, with all shops closing.
The company also announced that as a partner of the COP26 climate change conference, it had brought forward its target to have net zero carbon emissions in its operations from 2040 to 2035.

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