1. A two-year-old boy – Deeon Higgins – was attacked by a dog and killed yesterday in NSW. The dog, a mastiff cross, was owned by the little boy’s cousin – and has since been put down.
The boy’s mother and grandmother both attempted to fight the dog off. Eventually his mother was successful, but Deeon passed away a short time after being taken to Deniliquin Hospital.
Rest in peace, Deeon.
2. A New Zealand dairy company has been forced to recall batches of exported whey protein (used in baby formula and sports drinks) because it’s reportedly been tainted by bacteria that causes botulism. Botulism is a paralytic illness that can sometimes be fatal.
A batch of the contaminated whey protein from Fonterra was on its way to Australia but has been quarantined before entering the country. It will not be used in any dairy products in this country. You can read the company’s statement to this effect here.
The contamination could have a significant effect on New Zealand trade, with China and Russia both banning imports on all New Zealand dairy products.
3. Yesterday Prime Minister Kevin Rudd visited the Governor-General Quentin Bryce and officially informed her of his intention to call a Federal Election for September 7 this year. You can read more about what Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said in their subsequent press conferences here.
Today’s Newspoll shows Kevin Rudd is still the preferred Prime Minister but that his lead has slipped since he took back the Labor leadership in June. Mr Rudd leads Opposition Leader Tony Abbott 47 – 43 . On two party preferred basis, the Coalition lead the ALP 52-48.
4. A young, pregnant Sydney woman has been stabbed to death by her boyfriend. Twenty-three-year-old Allira Green was found with a stab wound to her chest yesterday afternoon in a Maroubra unit; she tragically died at the scene. Her boyfriend, 38-year-old Chris Andersen, has been arrested and the police have denied bail.
5. Eighty-three-year-old entertainer Rolf Harris has made a public appearance at a festival in England. “Just before I go any further I would just like to thank you all for my support … for your support,” he told the crowd. “I didn’t say it very well, but you know what I mean. Thank you for your support, I will always wear it.” Harris is due to answer bail today over sexual abuse allegations.
6. Australia’s Foreign Minister Bob Carr has added his voice to the many raising concerns about vote rigging in the recent Zimbabwe election. The elections saw 89-year-old President Robert Mugabe re-elected.
Senator Carr said: “I am pleased that last Wednesday’s election proceeded largely without violence but the African Union, SADC, civil society groups and our own Embassy in Harare have all raised concerns with the voters roll and voting procedures.”
7. An 11-year-old Indian girl has died after she was raped and set alight. An 18-year-old man is suspected of dousing the girl in kerosene after she threatened to reveal his identity as her alleged rapist.
8. Prince Philip is likely to make his first public appearance this month, since undergoing surgery on his abdomen in June. The Queen’s 92-year-old husband had exploratory abdominal surgery and took two months off his public duties to recover. A royal source has said that he was “continuing to make good progress” and will travel to Scotland in mid August to take part in a medal presentation at the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
9. Forty people in Afghanistan have been killed by flash floods, after days of rain that also have destroyed houses in eastern and south-eastern provinces, including some districts of Kabul, the capital.