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Friday's news in under 5 minutes.

We’ve rounded up all the latest news from Australia and around the world – so you don’t have to go searching. 

1. Brisbane rally against downgrading of Gerard Baden-Clay today.

A rally protesting the downgrading of Gerard Baden-Clay’s murder conviction to manslaughter will go ahead today in Brisbane’s CBD.

TODAY’s Lisa Wilkinson will speak at the rally and will be joined by Bruce and Denise Morcombe.

Today’s Courier Mail has shown their support for the rally with a front page plea for the public to get behind the rally.

On the TODAY show Lisa Wilkinson said “But like many people in the community I want to understand how we can go through a huge trial that sat for months and 12 carefully chosen jurors came to the absolute decision that Gerard Baden-Clay was guilty of murdering his beautiful wife Allison.”

“And it seems to all hinge around this whole issue, for a murder conviction to stick, this issue of premeditation.”

But I stress I don’t know anything about the law. I’ve never studied it. But like most simple-minded folk, I just want to understand how that doesn’t contribute to it.

“And if it is manslaughter, they’re suggesting that he did dispose of her body,” she said.

“To me that says that even if it was manslaughter there was some premeditation there of ‘I don’t want to be guilty of this’.”

2. Reports Mick Fanning’s brother died of a drug overdose.

There are reports that Mick Fanning’s older brother Peter died of a suspected drug overdose.

Peter Fanning, 43, was found dead inside a home at Tweed Heads early on Wednesday night.

The Gold Coast Bulletin reports that while police still do not know what time he died or the exact cause of death, a senior officer suspected that a drug overdose was the likely cause.

Mick fanning yesterday posted a heartbreaking tribute to his elder brother.

“I am so grateful for the incredible love and well wishes that have come my way since learning of my eldest brother’s passing this morning,” Fanning wrote.

Mick Fanning Instagram

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3. Airport worker suspended for conducting a security screening on Foreign Minister Julie Bishop.

A female security officer at Melbourne Airport has been suspended after conducting a security screening on Foreign Minister Julie Bishop that wasn’t random.

Fairfax Media reports that on September 22 as Ms Bishop cleared security in Melbourne on her way to New York for the United Nations leader’s summit she was targeted for a “random” security check.

The worker, employed by airport security contractor ISS, was stood down from work for “not adhering to standard security screening procedures”.

Fairfax Media reports that it is unclear exactly why the worker was stood down but it is likely that she recognised Ms Bishop and targeted her.

A spokesman for Ms Bishop said no “official complaint” was made by the Foreign Minister or her staff.

“The Foreign Minister passes through hundreds of airport security checkpoints each year and is more than happy to be treated on the same basis as other travellers,” she said.

Melbourne Airport said in a statement:

“The female ISS worker was suspended from duties as a result of not adhering to standard security screening procedures as required at an Australian international airport. The female worker has now returned to duties following additional process and customer service training,” the airport said in a statement.

4. Best day to do your Christmas shopping.

Christmas shopping 1
Sunday is tipped to be the best day to go shopping with fewer shoppers expected to be out in force.

If you haven’t completed all your Christmas shopping then don’t despair there is one day that looks set not to be too hectic.

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Sunday is tipped to be the best day to go shopping with fewer shoppers expected to be out in force.

National Australia Bank data predicts there will be about 60 per cent less trading this Sunday — meaning queues at the ATMs and in store will be much shorter and quicker.

The bank’s executive general manager of consumer lending, Angus Gilfillan told News Limited: “This Sunday is your best bet to beat the Christmas shopping crowds with a comparatively few 7.2 million transactions,’’ he said.

“We expect to see customers’ transactions continue to increase on most days, peaking at 11.5 million transactions on Christmas Eve.” “This Sunday is your best bet to beat the Christmas shopping crowds with a comparatively few 7.2 million transactions,’’ he said.

“We expect to see customers’ transactions continue to increase on most days, peaking at 11.5 million transactions on Christmas Eve.”

5. Adelaide and Melbourne baking in the heatwave.

Melbourne is set to feel the full force of a heatwave that has been hitting Adelaide.

Temperatures in Melbourne are expected to hit 41C tomorrow.

The temperature has made it above 41C three times before Christmas in December in the last 30 years. Temperatures hit 36C yesterday and today will be a sweat-inducing 37C.

There will be no relief until a cool change on Sunday afternoon.

Meanwhile Adelaide is expecting 42 for today and 43 for Saturday.

Keep cool!

6. Soundwave music festival cancelled.

Australia’s biggest rock festival, Soundwave, has been cancelled.

The Age reports that a headline act pulled out, venues were not confirmed and another act denied they were confirmed.

The festival’s promoter AJ Maddah tweeted last night that the festival, which has been highly successful in the last few years was off “due to poor ticket sales”.

Maddah then tweeted that he’d unsuccessfully “tried to get Rage Against the Machine back together” to plug the gaps in the line-up.

Fans are meanwhile confused about how get refunds for their tickets. Maddah told fans they needed to get a refund from ticket company Eventopia, but the ticket company said they need to go straight to the festival promoter.

7. Mother jailed for taking poison to kill unborn baby.

A woman has been jailed after taking a poison she bought on the Internet to terminate her unborn son.

Natalie Towers, 24, from the UK, bought the drug online and took it in her home. When she began to miscarry she became frightened and called an ambulance.

The first paramedic arrived to find Ms Towers complaining of stomach pain but not appearing to be distressed or concerned, the prosecutor told the court. Metro reports that when a second paramedic arrived looked in the toilet, Towers said ‘It’s dead, I know it’s dead’.

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The female paramedic found ‘there was a baby, head first in the toilet’,

He was warm, pale but not blue, ‘small but fully-formed’, the court heard. There was no sign of life.

Tests later showed he was between 32 and 34 weeks gestation.

Tower claimed at first that she was unaware of her pregnancy and had not felt any movements but then confessed she took tablets although ‘she didn’t think she was that far along’,

Mr Justice Jay said: ‘The case has nothing to do with the general immorality or otherwise of the termination of unborn fetuses.

‘The law in this country is quite clear, you must have been fully aware no doubt in line with your internet searches, it was open to you to seek termination at any stage before 24 weeks gestation.’

The judge said her baby at 32-34 weeks would have had a ‘very good chance of survival, but had no chance once you administered this drug’

She was sentenced to two years and six months jail.

8. Upside Christmas tree goes viral.

christmas tree upside down

An Irish woman has hung her Christmas tree from the roof to stop her dog pulling the decorations from it.

Linda Creighton posted the image to Facebook – where it has now been liked more than 800,000 times.

Her frustrated pooch has had to make do with chewing her red Christmas slippers.

Ingenious!

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