Daily News Roundup

February 20, 2019

Wednesday, February 20

Severe Tropical Cyclone Oma could possibly cross the southern Queensland coast, after changing direction overnight, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) reports.

The category three system is currently off New Caledonia, about 1,120 kilometres north-east of Brisbane.

BOM said it was no longer expected to turn south-east towards New Zealand over the weekend.

Forecaster Sam Campbell said instead the system was moving south-west.

“It’s now looking increasingly likely that it will continue on a westerly track towards the southern Queensland coast,” he was reported as saying.

“Most likely it will weaken just a touch, it won’t be a category three by the time it gets to the coast, but just to emphasis that point — we could actually see that cyclone coming into southern Queensland and possibly even a coastal crossing over the weekend.”

He said it was still unclear exactly where on the coast the system could reach.

“Anywhere south of about St Lawrence, so that’s that area around Rockhampton, so anywhere south of there right down to Brisbane really is potentially in play for a cyclone crossing if that was to occur — but I’ve got to emphasise it will come near the coast and not necessarily cross the coast but it is possible it could cross the coast.”

The weather bureau warned abnormally high tides are expected along the southern Queensland coast in the coming days.


The British Government has reportedly revoked the British citizenship of a teenager who ran away from her London home when she was 15 to join Islamic State in Syria.

In a statement on Twitter, the family’s lawyer Tasnime Akunjee said they were “very [disappointed] with the Home Office’s intention to have an order made depriving Shamima Begum of her citizenship”.

“We are considering all legal avenues to challenge this decision,” Mr Akunjee said.

The order was made by Home Secretary Sajid Javid and Ms Begum’s mother was notified by letter, the UK’s ITV News reported.

“In light of the circumstances of your daughter, the notice of the Home Secretary’s decision has been served of file today (19th February), and the order removing her British citizenship has subsequently been made,” the letter read.

The letter said Ms Begum, whom the BBC said had Bangladeshi heritage, has a right to appeal the decision.

The BBC reported that Ms Begum’s Bangladeshi heritage meant she would not be left stateless, although the teen said she did not have a Bangladeshi passport and had never been to the country.

Ms Begum ran away from her home in London’s Bethnal Green in 2015, part of a group of schoolgirls from the neighbourhood who went to Syria to marry IS fighters.

She was found heavily pregnant in a Syrian refugee camp last week and gave birth to a child on Sunday (local time).

She told British media she had wanted to return home to raise her child as she had previously lost two children to malnutrition while living with the terrorist group.

Ms Begum told media said she did not know what she was getting into when she left and wanted to bring her baby back to London with her.

“I think a lot of people should have sympathy towards me for everything I’ve been through,” she told the UK’s Sky News.

“I just was hoping that maybe for me, for the sake of me and my child, they let me come back.

“Because I can’t live in this camp forever. It’s not really possible. I don’t want to take care of my child in this camp because I’m afraid he might even die in this camp.”

She told UK media she had only been a “housewife” during her time and said she “never did anything dangerous”.

“I never made propaganda. I never encouraged people to come to Syria. So they’d only have proof I didn’t [do] anything that is dangerous,” she said


You have only a few more weeks to shop around for mangoes.

What has been the second biggest harvest on record is drawing to a close.

“It’s looking like we’ll produce in excess of 10 million trays,” said Robert Gray, chief executive of Australian Mango Industry Association.

“Our second biggest mango season ever,” he said.

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