US President Donald Trump’s controversial special adviser on the coronavirus, Scott Atlas, has resigned. Thanking Mr Trump for the honour of serving the American people, Dr Atlas said he had “always relied on the latest science and evidence without any political consideration or influence”. During his four months in the role, Dr Atlas questioned the need for masks and other measures to control the pandemic.
Saudi Arabia agreed on Monday to let Israeli airliners cross its airspace en route to the United Arab Emirates after talks between Saudi officials and White House senior adviser Jared Kushner, a senior Trump administration official said. The agreement was hammered out just hours before Israel’s first commercial flight to the UAE was planned on Tuesday morning. The Israir flight was at risk of being canceled with no overflight agreement.
China is deepening its spat with Australia, refusing to apologize after a government official posted an altered image of an Australian soldier holding a knife to a young Afghan boy’s throat. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison had asked for an apology; instead, a Chinese government representative excoriated Australia for its troops’ alleged brutality in Afghanistan. Australia’s prime minister called the tweet repugnant, outrageous and offensive.
A vast expanse of Amazon rainforest seven times larger than Greater London was destroyed over the last year as deforestation surged to a 12-year high under Brazil’s far-right president Jair Bolsonaro. Figures released by the Brazilian space institute, Inpe, on Monday showed at least 11,088 sq km of rainforest was razed between August 2019 and July this year – the highest figure since 2008.
The popular Netflix series “The Crown” has taken viewers on a sweeping tour of modern history through the eyes of the British royal family, dramatizing pivotal events from the post-war era to Margaret Thatcher’s administration. Oliver Dowden, the United Kingdom’s secretary of state for culture, told the Mail on Sunday newspaper that he believes Netflix needs to make it abundantly clear to viewers that “The Crown” is a work of fiction, not a by-the-book history lesson.