Daily News Roundup

January 30, 2019

Wednesday, January 30

Nearly 3000 rubber wristbands given away at top cricket matches this month have been deemed “dangerous” and should be trashed.

The call by Alinta Energy and Cricket Australia comes after a child swallowed a potentially deadly button battery from a band in Queensland.

Alinta Energy and Cricket Australia distributed approximately the rubber wristbands at the One Day International at the MCG on January 18 and the first Test at the Gabba on January 24.

One child in Queensland had to receive medical treatment after ingesting the battery and is being monitored.

The family contacted Alinta Energy advising their child had swallowed the battery from a wristband handed out at the Gabba.

In a statement, the company said it had reached out to the family to offer support.

A spokesman said similar wristbands had been distributed at cricket games in the past, using different branding, with no apparent incidents.

Queensland Health said every week in Australia an average of four children presented to emergency departments after swallowing a button battery.

While nationally, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said about 20 children presented to emergency each week, from ingesting or inserting button batteries.

The small round batteries are easy to swallow and have contributed to the deaths of two Australian children in the past.

The batteries can lodge inside a child’s gastrointestinal system and an electrical current immediately triggered by saliva, can cause a chemical reaction


Asia Bibi, the Christian woman who spent nine years on death row for blasphemy has cleared the last hurdle to her freedom.

She is now expected to seek asylum in Canada after the Supreme Court,  the country’s highest court, upheld her acquittal.

Two of her children are reported to be already already living in Canada.

The 47-year-old farm worker, was convicted of blasphemy against Islam in 2010, after an argument over whether she could share the same water glass as her Muslim co-workers.

She was sentenced to death by hanging, but the Supreme Court acquitted her on appeal in October last year.

The court’s decision prompted nationwide protests from Islamist hardliners.

The protests led to schools being shut in some areas and a major highway from Islamabad to Lahore was blockaded by angry mobs.

Ms Bibi and her children were kept in hiding amid calls for her beheading.

The Supreme Court has now rejected an appeal against Ms Bibi’s acquittal, clearing the last legal hurdle to her freedom.

A deal struck between the Pakistani Government and Islamist leaders in a bid to quell unrest after her acquittal allowed for her to be stopped from leaving the country and for further appeals to be heard.


Britain’s newspapers have told social media users to tone down inappropriate criticism of Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, and Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge.

Kensington Palace officials have been seeking help from Instagram to monitor and remove offensive comments about the two duchesses, who are married to Prince Harry and Prince William.

Palace aides have recently been spending hours every week moderating comments on the official Palace Instagram account and removing racist and sexist content.

Neither Duchess has their own account, but with 7.1 million Instagram followers, the Kensington Palace account attracts the brunt of the online abuse.

There have been rumours in recent months that Meghan and Catherine have been feuding, with the alleged feud starting when Catherine was reportedly left in tears after the fitting for Princess Charlotte’s bridesmaid dress ahead of the Royal wedding.

The reported feud could have partly fuelled online abuse with fans of one duchess criticising the other online in very personal terms, according to local media.

The Times newspaper reported in an editorial called “Vile Abuse” that many of the comments made about Meghan and Catherine are “too vicious to publish here and there have even been threats of violence”.

The Times said that commenters have claimed that Meghan’s pregnancy is a scam and accused Catherine of being dull.

“Women receive more abuse online than men and this sad truth seems to apply just as much to the royal family,” the newspaper said.

The paper also condemned the treatment of Rachel Riley, a British television personality who has complained about a torrent of anti-Semitic abuse on Twitter.

The Duchess of Sussex, an American actress who married Prince Harry in May, is pregnant with their first child, and some on social media and in the press have taken to criticizing her for cradling her “baby bump” during public engagements.

When first confirming that he was dating Meghan in November 2016, Prince Harry issued a scathing statement about the poor treatment of the then Suits actress, pointing to examples of racist and sexist stories and media attacks as “not right” for anyone to be subjected to.

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