Photo: Lisa Maree Williams/ Getty Images.
Hello! Here’s what you need to know on Monday.
1. Hurricane Irma is hammering Florida. The storm made landfall in the Florida Keys at 9:10am local time (11:10pm AEST) on Sunday. After pummeling the Keys, the storm has moved north up Florida’s Gulf Coast, towards population centers including Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Orlando. At least 23 people have died. Watch the storm rip the roof off a Miami house.
2. Ousted White House chief strategist Steve Bannon says firing former FBI director James Comey was the biggest mistake in “modern political history”. US president Donald Trump fired Comey in early May, despite Bannon arguing strongly against the move.
3. North Korea has warned the US that it would pay a “due price” for spearheading efforts for fresh sanctions on the regime following its latest nuclear test. The UN Security Council will vote on the US-drafted resolution later today. Over the weekend US Defense Secretary James Mattis said, “Any threat to the United States or its territories including Guam or our allies will be met with a massive military response, a response both effective and overwhelming.” Meaning, the probability of a US strike on North Korea has escalated.
4. Rafael Nadal has won the US Open for a third time. As the championship title winner, Nadal takes home $US3.7 million ($AU4.6 million) in prize money.
5. UK ministers opposing the government’s EU repeal bill will cause “chaos”, according to Brexit Secretary David Davis. He said if the repeal bill was rejected “we would be approaching a cliff edge of uncertainty which is not in the interest of anyone”.
6. Post-Brexit customs checks could cost £4 billion ($AU6.5 billion) a year, according to a think tank report released on Monday. It comes as the British government says it wants to negotiate a new relationship that will ensure trade is as free of friction as possible after March 2019.
7. Norwegians will go to the polls for a final day of voting on Monday in a parliamentary election between prime minister Erna Solberg’s centre-right block and the centre-left Opposition headed by the Labour Party. So far results remain too close to call.
8. Iraqi authorities are holding 1,400 foreign wives and children of suspected Islamic State fighters after government forces expelled the jihadist group from one of its last remaining strongholds in Iraq, according to security and aid officials. Most of those being held originate from Turkey.
9. Myanmar has rejected a rebel ceasefire. The Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army called a truce over the weekend, urging Myanmar’s army to lay down weapons as well. The national government said it would not negotiate with “terrorists”.
10. Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen is threatening to dissolve the country’s Opposition party if it continues to back detained leader Kem Sokha, who has been charged with treason over an alleged plot to gain power with US support.
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