WEDNESDAY, SEPT 1
Tough state border restrictions will remain after the Queensland and New South Wales governments failed to agree on any changes in talks yesterday, with restrictions likely to be reviewed on September 10.
Deputy Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said government officials were in detailed discussions for several hours.
“We are in a very difficult situation at the moment because we’re seeing 1,200-plus cases every day in NSW and none in Queensland,” he said.
The NSW government had already ruled out the possibility of moving border checkpoints south.
Deputy Commission Gollschewski says Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young is not likely to review her health directions regarding the border until the lockdown is lifted in northern NSW.
“NSW will review their current lockdown on the 10th of September … that’s a matter for them but I understand that’s the next point that would be looked up,” he said.
“Our Chief Health Officer would then consider any decision that NSW makes and work out what needs to be done.”
NSW Cross Border Commissioner James McTavish said the NSW government proposed restoration of services at Mundindi and changes to the definition of essential workers to include hospital, construction and education staff.
“We’ve provided Queensland with a substantial number of proposals for them to consider in relation to their border arrangements, unfortunately, none of those proposals were approved,” Mr McTavish said.
“We’re of the view that the Queensland arrangements are very heavy handed.”
Meanwhile, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has announced the state government will allow 50 families from interstate hotspots back into hotel quarantine from Saturday.
The government has been criticised for allowing NRL officials and players’ families into Queensland while all other arrivals – including residents – had been paused.
It comes as Queensland records another day of zero new community cases of COVID-19, with one overseas acquired case detected in hotel quarantine.
Interstate arrivals were halted when there was no more room in quarantine hotels.
*NSW recorded 1,116 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8:00pm yesterday.
Four people died of COVID-19 in the reporting period.
It means there have been 100 COVID-19 deaths since NSW’s Delta outbreak began in June.
The four patients who died were women in their 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s.
All had underlying health conditions and none were vaccinated.
There are now 917 COVID cases being cared for in NSW hospitals with 150 people in intensive care, 66 of whom require ventilation.
Of the 150 in ICU, 127 patients are not vaccinated.
In western NSW, there were 29 new COVID-19 cases, predominately in Dubbo.
The small town of Wilcannia, in the state’s far west, reported three new COVID-19 cases.
*Victoria has recorded 120 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases, 64 of which have been linked to existing outbreaks.
It is the first time the state’s daily cases have been in the triple digits since 110 cases were detected on September 2 last year at the tail of Victoria’s devastating second wave.
There were also two deaths that were reported late yesterday and included in today’s numbers.
Health authorities say they will provide more information about the quarantine status of the cases later today, however according to the Herald Sun, playgrounds could be one of the first things to reopen, with the playground ban allegedly set to lift as soon as this Friday.
Victoria processed 56,501 test results on Tuesday, when 33,455 doses of vaccine were delivered at state-run sites.
The government will today reveal which restrictions will remain in place from Friday, when the state’s lockdown will be extended.
Yesterday, Premier Daniel Andrews said he would outline the plan to give more clarity to Victorians.
“The low number that we can cope with, the low number that we can live with and the easing that we will be able to do over time, over coming weeks,” he said.
However, Mr Andrews warned any easing of restrictions would be incremental, saying there “will not be freedom day”.
Faced with tough questions about leaving Afghanistan, including Americans left behind, President Joe Biden has called the US military airlift to extract more than 120,000 people from Kabul an “extraordinary success”, reports the ABC and wire services.
Mr Biden was under heavy criticism, particularly from Republicans, for his handling of the final evacuation, which left more than 100 Americans behind.
Twenty-four hours after the departure of the last American C-17 cargo plane from Kabul, Mr Biden — in an address to the nation — vigorously defended his decision to end America’s longest war and withdraw all US troops ahead of an August 31 deadline.
“I was not going to extend this forever war,” Mr Biden said in an address from the White House State Dining Room. “And I was not going to extend a forever exit.”
Mr Biden said 90 per cent of Americans who wanted to leave Afghanistan were able to do so.
Thousands of troops spent a harrowing two weeks protecting the airlift of Afghans, Americans and others seeking to escape a country once again ruled by Taliban militants.
“For those remaining Americans there is no deadline,” Mr Biden said.
“We remain committed to get them out if they want to come out.”
He said US Secretary of State Antony Blinken was leading continued diplomatic efforts to ensure safe passage for any American, Afghan partner or foreign national who wanted to leave Afghanistan after the August 15 takeover by the Islamist Taliban.
Oprah Winfrey has been accused of faking her support of the #MeToo movement by high-profile activist and actress Rose McGowan, reports news.com.au.
In a scathing tweet, the former Charmed star, 47, hit out at the talk show queen, describing her as “as fake as they come”.
“I am glad more are seeing the ugly truth of @Oprah,” McGowan tweeted, along with an old photo of Winfrey, now 67, smiling alongside convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein.
“I wish she were real, but she isn’t.”
McGowan, an outspoken survivor of sexual assault, continued, “From being pals with Weinstein to abandoning & destroying Russell Simmon’s [sic] victims, she is about supporting a sick power structure for personal gain, she is as fake as they come. #lizard.”
Weinstein’s long list of alleged sexual assaults dating back to the 1970s was the catalyst for the #MeToo movement in October 2017, with McGowan being one of the first of dozens of women to accuse him of rape.
The disgraced film producer, who has denied having “any non-consensual sex,” was found guilty of two felonies in February 2020 and is currently serving time in Wende Correctional Facility.
Meanwhile, Simmons has also been accused of rape and sexual misconduct by 20 women. The music executive, 63, has denied the accusations and kept a low profile in recent years, though he resurfaced in the Hamptons earlier this month.
It appears McGowan’s tweet refers to Winfrey’s almost-involvement in a 2020 documentary titled On The Record which centred on Simmons’ alleged sexual misconduct.
While she was originally on board to executive-produce the project, she ended up backing out, citing differences with the film’s directors.
“I have decided that I will no longer be executive producer on the untitled Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering documentary, and it will not air on Apple TV+,” Winfrey said in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter in January 2020.
“I want it to be known that I unequivocally believe and support the women. Their stories deserve to be told and heard. In my opinion, there is more work to be done on the film to illuminate the full scope of what the victims endured, and it has become clear that the filmmakers and I are not aligned in that creative vision.”
It’s not the first time McGowan has publicly accused a high-profile figure of faking their support of the #MeToo movement.
Last year, she hit out at her Charmed co-star Alyssa Milano, calling her a #MeToo “fraud”.
The ugly Twitter spat occurred when Milano expressed her support for then-Presidential candidate Joe Biden and the Democratic Party.
McGowan has long been opposed to Biden after claims that he had sexually assaulted Tara Reade, and called Milano a fraud and a liar.
Reps for McGowan and Winfrey did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
This article originally appeared in the New York Post and was reproduced with permission
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