News: Princess Charlene denies she tried to flee wedding

Princess Charlene and Prince Albert II on their wedding day

1. Prince Albert of Monaco, bride Charlene, address ‘runaway bride’ rumours

The US Today Show’s Matt Lauer sat down with Prince Albert II and his new wife Princess Charlene after their royal wedding in Monaco was rumoured by many to be a ‘sham’ (Mia wrote about her own observations here). Here’s a sample:

MATT LAUER: Did you hear the rumors? I mean people were saying you were reluctant. And there’s always jitters. Every bride and every groom has jitters. But people were saying you were particularly reluctant about getting married. Set the record straight for me.

PRINCESS CHARLENE: Why would you go through all this effort to have this fantastic, you know, couple of days and have our most intimate, dearest friends come and join us for us to be reluctant?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. You know, I think there were, you know, part jealousy, part people that were envious, or that, you know wanted to disrupt and did not like the fact that we were finally coming together and marrying.

Here’s the chat:

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Survivors of the sinking asylum seeker boat off Indonesia

2. Harrowing details of tragic asylum boat journey

Horrific details have emerged from survivors of a 9m boat which capsized one hour into one leg of a journey which would eventually take them to Australia. Tom Allard from the Sydney Morning Herald reports: “As the three small outriggers brought them to their 2am ocean rendezvous, the 70-odd asylum seekers saw before them a nine-metre wooden fishing boat that was already listing and taking on water. “We were shocked. We told them it was too small, there were too many people. They [the Indonesian crew] got very angry and said no questions about this. They just said sit down, you can do nothing about it,” said Kamran Haider, a 17-year-old Pakistani.” Most of the people on board were crammed below the decks, choking on petrol fumes when the water began pouring in and the boat listed to one side. Survivors reported screams and seeing bodies in the water. Eight are confirmed dead – three children – but 15 are still missing.

3. Australian terror investigation leaks face court

A major Australian Federal Police operation which was hunting down terrorists who planned to commit atrocities in Australia faced a leak from the ranks who gave details to The Australian newspaper. The details are now being exposed in court as AFP Commissioner Tony Negus details his desperate attempts to convince the newspaper to withhold publishing the leaks. The operation’s senior investigating officer told the court he found the leak ”gut-wrenching” because of the work that many officers had put into the case. ”[These people] were going to machinegun people to death,” Detective Superintendent Damien Appleby said. ”[It was] quite a significant and serious plot.” When Mr Negus attempted to convince the newspaper to withhold, this conversation took place:

Mr Negus: ”Look, I am formally requesting you from the AFP, Victoria Police and ASIO not to go ahead with this story. People’s lives are at risk if you publish this story tomorrow.”

Mr Whittaker (The Australian’s editor): ”Well, how many lives are at risk?”

Mr Negus: ”Well, if these people are aware of police interest, they may well not go for their intended site … Publishing the article will put public safety at risk!”

Mr Whittaker: ”Well, what are we talking about? One person being killed, or … a number of people being killed?”

Mr Negus: ”You do not have the entire story and The Australian’s intended publication … has far more serious consequences. There are domestic aspects to this investigation, which involved planned attacks on a military base.”

Scarlett Johansson

4. Scarlett Johansson speaks out about nude pictures

The actress whose hacked nude photos went viral on the web has spoken to Vanity Fair about them, saying they were taken three years ago and sent to her then husband Ryan Reynolds. “There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s not like I was shooting a porno – although there’s nothing wrong with that, either.”

5. Julian Assange loses extradition appeal

The founder of WikiLeaks, Australian Julian Assange, has lost his appeal aimed at avoiding extradition to Sweden. Britain’s High Court in London has upheld a ruling that Assange should be sent to face questioning by Swedish authorities over claims of sexual assault against two women. Assange has one last option to appeal – the Supreme Court in Britain – but if he chooses not to he will be sent to Sweden within a fortnight.

6. JK Rowling considered killing off Ron Weasley in Harry Potter

Well, didn’t see that coming. The author gave an interview for the special features of the soon-to-be released final film where she admitted she was in a bad place and considered offing one of her main characters. “…funnily enough, I planned from the start that none of them would die. Then midway through, which I think is a reflection of the fact that I wasn’t in a very happy place, I started thinking I might polish one of them off. Out of sheer spite. ‘There, now you definitely can’t have him any more.’ But I think in my absolute heart of heart of hearts, although I did seriously consider killing Ron, [I wouldn’t have done it].”

7. Sarah Jessica Parker in Australia, loves fashion

Well that was hardly a surprise. SJP was invited to host Australia’s ‘grandest ladies lunch’ in front of 1500 yesterday at Melbourne’s Palladium ballroom. And she turned up wearing a hat that topped everyone’s in the room, designed by Philip Treacy the milliner to the stars. He’s also the guy who designed many of the head pieces (including Beatrice’s) at the Royal wedding. SJP told the crowd: ‘‘I am actually not really like the character I played in Sex and The City. I’m much more of a homebody than she is, but I do like to dress up and fashion is a lot of fun.’’

For your fashion fix this morning, here’s our gallery of Sarah Jessica Parker…

8. Men living at home are … not so bad.

Apparently Gen Y are a lot more forgiving of men who stay behind at the parent’s house, assuming they still try and fend for themselves a little bit. But relationship counsellors warned that living at home could stunt a man’s ability to forge meaningful relationships and function independently. Is it the same for women? Hmmm.

9. And WTF … one cup of coffee, in an inhaler

Time poor but caffeine deprived? A Harvard biomedical engineering professor invented AeroShot which delivers one cup of coffee in three lime-flavoured puffs straight on to the tongue where it is absorbed straight away. Apparently the buzz is better than actual coffee … quicker, too. The product is going to hit American stores in January for three bucks.


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