10 Things You Need To Know This Morning In Australia

Independence Square, Kiev.

Good morning, welcome to BI Australia. To get you started, here’s a few things you might have missed overnight:

Etihad Airlines are being taken to task by passengers on a flight from Melbourne to Abu Dhabi Monday who claim they were exposed to a terror threat. A fire broke out on Flight EY461 in the front toilet, forcing an unscheduled landing in Jakarta. Then, two hours from landing in Abu Dhabi, another fire broke out, this time in the rear toilet, with reports of “flames and smoke” from some passengers. The suspect may have used a cigarette lighter smuggled on board to start the fires. Passengers are demanding to know why the culprit was still on board after the Jakarta landing.

Tony Abbott has put Facebook and Google “on notice”, rejecting arguments they can regulate themselves to protect kids against cyberbullies. Coalition MPs have been fielding complaints from parents who say the internet giants are ignoring their pleas.

Russia had a shocker in Sochi overnight. After a brutal elimination in the ice hockey quarter-finals drew jeers from the home crowd, broken Russian hearts all but disintegrated when 15-year-old ice skater Yulia Lipnitskaya fell in the short program.

Back in Australia, questions are being asked if the $500,000 invested in Chumpy Pullin’s fruitless pursuit of Olympic gold was taxpayer dollars well-spent. We can be a harsh lot, Australians. Perhaps we could look at it as the bait that drove David Morris to his extraordinary silver medal effort.

An OECD report has singled out IT workers’ kids as the smartest kids in Australia.

“There was blood everywhere” was the alarming appraisal of the latest troubles reported on Manus Island, this time from an Australian Immigration Dept interpreter who claims Papua New Guinea locals attacked asylum seekers with machetes, knives and rocks.

Images from the crackdown on Kiev protesters are impossible to ignore. Today’s snapshot of what’s become of the city’s formerly stunning Independence Square could be from the set of the latest Mad Max movie. Except with real people and real tragedy – the latest body toll sits at 24, police and protesters.

Seth Green made a compelling case as to why Superman could never be scared of Ben Affleck as the goddamn Batman.

After its rocky finish to 2013 following reports of the odd car spontaneously combusting, Tesla is back and bigger than ever, reporting a whopping 16% jump after hours to $224.44, on its 2014 forecast and after it beat Q4 earnings.

The minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee’s January meeting on monetary policy are out, with some reassuring alert-but-not-alarmed advice on emerging markets.

BONUS ITEM: Packs of chihuahuas are on the rampage in Arizona. That is all.

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