The 10 most important things in the world right now

Prince Harry poses with the Australian Invictus Squad for the launch of the Invictus Games Sydney 2018. The fourth Invictus Games – a sporting competition for wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and veterans founded by Prince Harry – will be held in Sydney, October 20-27 next year and will include more than 500 competitors from 17 nations competing in 10 adaptive sports events. Photo: David Moir/Getty Images

Hello! Here’s what you need to know on Wednesday.

1. US President Donald Trump may have gone further than many suspected to get the FBI off Michael Flynn’s back. In March Trump asked the Director of National Intelligence, Dan Coats, for his help to convince then-FBI Director James Comey to back off, The Washington Post reported. The president also complained to CIA boss Mike Pompeo about the issue.

2. A month earlier, Comey told US Attorney General Jeff Sessions he didn’t want to be left alone with Trump. He reportedly told the AG the day after a private meeting with the president back in February. And now there are reports Sessions offered to resign as his relationship with Trump soured.

3. There’s one day of campaigning left before Britons go to the polls. Meanwhile the three men behind the terrorist attack in London have been named. Four of the seven people who died in the attacks have been named, including two Australians.

4. MI5 was warned 22-year-old attacker Youssef Zaghba “wanted to be a terrorist”. The Times of London reports an Italian magistrate raised the alarm about the Italian citizen of Moroccan descent and ISIS material was found on his phone, but despite the details being uploaded to a terror database by Italian officials, he was never made a “subject of interest” by UK police or MI5.

5. BHP Billiton’s retail shareholders are increasingly throwing their support behind activists wanting change. Fund managers Elliott Associates and Tribeca Investment Partners are agitating separately for changes in the world’s largest miner and 48% of shareholders surveyed agree major changes to the company’s operations and structure are needed. Elliott wants to abandon BHP’s Australia-London dual listing and spin off US petroleum assets.

6. Qatar Airways has chartered emergency flights to evacuate stranded passengers in Saudi Arabia. The Saudis, along with the governments of Bahrain, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates severed all diplomatic ties with Qatar, including all air, land, and sea transportation, on Monday.

7. Apple is trying to become Microsoft faster than Microsoft can become Apple. Each is trying to get its products to be more like the other’s, but taking a different route to get there. The race is on to see which can complete its transition first.

8. Australia just set an economic growth record. Quarterly GDP figures released today delivered 103 quarters – 26 years – without a recession, to tie with the Netherlands. At 1.7% it’s the slowest growth rate since the GFC, and population growth played a huge part in that apparent economic success.

9. China is becoming more like the West when it comes to income inequality. French economist Thomas Piketty’s latest study found that after a three-decade economic boom and double-digit growth rates, there’s been a sharp increase in income inequality.

10. Mafia kingpin Salvatore Riina, jailed for killing more than 100 people, could soon be released. “The Beast”, the most brutal Sicilian godfather, jailed in 1993 and now 86, could be freed on “compassionate grounds” because he has cancer. An Italian high court agreed to his release so he can “die with dignity”.

And finally…

Here’s how tough it can be trying to parent in the gig economy era.

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