While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Sept 7

British PM Liz Truss appointed (from left) Kwasi Kwarteng as Chancellor of the Exchequer, James Cleverly as foreign minister and Suella Braverman as home secretary, or interior minister. PHOTOS: REUTERS, AFP

Liz Truss' Cabinet is Britain's first without white man in top jobs

The new British Prime Minister Liz Truss has selected a Cabinet where for the first time a white man will not hold one of the country's four most important ministerial positions.

Truss appointed Kwasi Kwarteng - whose parents came from Ghana in the 1960s - as Britain's first Black finance minister, while James Cleverly is the first Black foreign minister.

Cleverly, whose mother hails from Sierra Leone and whose father is white, has in the past spoken about being bullied as a mixed-race child and has said the party needs to do more to attract Black voters.

Suella Braverman, whose parents came to Britain from Kenya and Mauritius six decades ago, succeeds Priti Patel as the second ethnic minority home secretary, or interior minister, where she will be responsible for police and immigration.


Russia may buy ‘millions’ of North Korean shells, rockets

Russia could be about to buy “literally millions” of artillery shells and rockets from old Cold-War ally North Korea, the White House said on Tuesday, calling this further evidence of Moscow’s “desperation” amid supply shortages for its war in Ukraine. Russia has denied the claims.

US State Department deputy spokesman Vedant Patel told a news briefing on Tuesday that Russia “is in the process of purchasing millions rockets and artillery shells from North Korea for use in Ukraine.”

Calling it a “potential purchase,” Kirby told a briefing: “Our sense is it could include literally millions of rounds, rockets and artillery shells from North Korea. That’s what our information gives us – it could be on that scale.”


Biden rejects branding Russia 'state sponsor of terrorism'

US President Joe Biden’s administration on Tuesday said it would be counterproductive to brand Russia a “state sponsor of terrorism,” rejecting calls from Ukraine and lawmakers to take the far-reaching action.

Biden, asked by a reporter on Monday if he would blacklist Russia as a terrorist state, said simply, “no,” after months of non-committal answers from senior officials.

Asked on Tuesday whether a decision had been made, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said a terrorism designation was “not the most effective or strongest path forward” to “hold Russia accountable.”


Two dead, thousands told to flee California wildfire

At least two people are dead and thousands have been ordered to flee a rapidly spreading fire in California, with the region's oppressive heatwave expected to peak on Tuesday.

Several buildings were destroyed as the Fairview fire erupted south-east of Los Angeles, racing to consume 1,000 hectares in less than 24 hours.

Firefighters said two people were known to have died in the blaze, and one person had been hospitalised with burn injuries.


Football: Haaland double fires Man City in Sevilla rout

Manchester City's Erling Haaland celebrates after scoring the team's third goal against Sevilla. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

Pep Guardiola says the “incredible” Erling Haaland will be even more deadly once Manchester City adapt to the Norway striker after his double inspired a 4-0 rout of Sevilla in Tuesday’s Champions League opener.

Haaland’s latest display of his sublime predatory instincts ensured City started their Group G campaign in emphatic fashion at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.

The 22-year-old put City ahead in the first half and he netted again after the interval as Phil Foden and Ruben Dias also scored.


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