The Australian and international news stories you need to know today, Tuesday May 4.

"Blood on his hands." Trapped cricketer unleashes on PM. 

Former Australian cricket opener Michael Slater has accused Prime Minister Scott Morrison of having blood on his hands for banning citizens from returning home from India.

His overnight Twitter tirade came after news the Indian Premier League's biosecurity bubble has been breached by multiple COVID-19 cases, including two teammates of Australia's vice-captain Pat Cummins.

If the competition shuts down then Cummins and others among a group of almost 40 Australian players, coaches and officials will be stuck in no man's land, because the Morrison government has banned all incoming travellers from India until at least May 15.

Slater, who has been attempting to return home to Australia from cricket commentary duties in India, launched a tirade against the prime minister on Monday night.

"If our government cared for the safety of Aussies they would allow us to get home. It's a disgrace!!," tweeted Slater, who has reportedly made it to the Maldives, where he will wait to come home.

"Blood on your hands PM. How dare you treat us like this."

"And those who think this is a money exercise. Well forget it," he tweeted a few hours later.


"This is what I do for a living and I have not made a penny having left early. So please stop the abuse and think of the thousands dying in India each day. It's called empathy. If only our government had some!"

The country's Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly has also warned of the “consequences” of Australia’s travel ban on India, writing a letter to Health Minister Greg Hunt about the risks.

"These include the risk of serious illness without access to healthcare, the potential for Australians to be stranded in a transit country, and in a worst-case scenario, deaths," he wrote.

"I consider that these serious implications can be mitigated through having the restriction only temporarily in place, ie a pause, and by ensuring there are categories of exemptions."

Gymnastics culture enabled abuse, says Human Rights Commission.

An independent review into Australian gymnastics has found the sport's culture enabled physical, sexual and emotional abuse in the sport.

The report, completed by the Australian Human Rights Commission, made 12 key recommendations off the back of five key findings.

It found "current coaching practices create a risk of abuse and harm to athletes" and that there was "insufficient focus on understanding the full range of behaviours that can constitute child abuse and neglect in gymnastics."


It also noted the sport's focus on 'winning-at-all-costs' and an acceptance of negative and abusive coaching behaviours resulted in "the silencing of the athlete voice and an increased risk of abuse and harm".

The report noted gymnasts were "predominately young and female" - contributing to power imbalances.

Interviewees cited examples of strength training being used as a punishment, or "overstretching" exercises that had left them in tears or led to injuries - which in turn were often downplayed.

The report also found gymnastics at all levels had not "appropriately and adequately addressed complaints of abuse and harm" and didn't effectively "safeguard" children and young people.

Interviewees referenced grooming and inappropriate physical contact in public and private spaces - with one participant saying athletes had "signs and signals" to direct each other to avoid certain coaches, while parents often weren't permitted to watch or attend training sessions.

The report also found body-shaming was rife due to a focus on the "ideal body" - which for female competitors was a pre-pubescent "pixie-style" shape.

"There is a spotlight on the human rights of athletes around the world and many of the lessons of this review are critical to all sports in Australia," sex discrimination commissioner Kate Jenkins, who led the investigation, said.

"This is an opportunity for gymnastics in Australia to lead the way on child safety and gender equality."


Gymnastics Australia, which commissioned the report in August last year, apologised and committed to implementing all 12 recommendations.

Ship workers detained in 'attractive' QLD.

A man who fled a livestock carrier at a port in Townsville without undergoing quarantine has tested negative to COVID-19.

The man was detained on Monday after being "temporarily unaccounted for" when he and 11 other crew refused to re-board the Polaris 3 on Saturday.

"The ABF is working with Queensland authorities on the safe quarantine and detention of the individuals," Australian Border Force said in a statement on Monday.


All 12 men have had their visas cancelled "as a matter of course".

Queensland looks "very attractive" for people coming from other parts of the world and the incident raises issues for the federal government, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.

"These are issues that Border Force needs to look into more closely. I'm quite sure the federal government will be doing that and I'm happy to raise that at national cabinet next Friday," she told reporters while touring the western Queensland town of Barcaldine on Monday.

De Belin retrial jury's 'arduous task'.

A judge has acknowledged the "arduous task" 12 Sydney jurors face as they consider verdicts in the rape retrial of NRL footballer Jack de Belin.

The St George Illawarra forward, 30, and his friend Callan Sinclair, 23, have both pleaded not guilty to aggravated sexual assault, saying their December 2018 encounter with a then-19-year-old in a North Wollongong unit was consensual.

A Sydney District Court jury on Monday deliberated for five-and-a-half hours before being released.

"You're on verdict now, you have 11 people to discuss the verdict with, and only keep those discussions between you 12," Judge Nicole Noman said when farewelling jurors on Monday.

"Once all 12 of you do arrive (on Tuesday), that's when you start your deliberations again."

She encouraged them to rest when not at court, noting the "arduous task" before them.

De Belin faces four identical charges while a fifth charge - aggravated sexual assault in company - alleges he was in the company of Sinclair during the first offence and also intentionally or recklessly inflicted actual bodily harm about that time.


If this post brings up any issues for you, or if you just feel like you need to speak to someone, please call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) – the national sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling service. It doesn’t matter where you live, they will take your call and, if need be, refer you to a service closer to home.

Bill Gates and wife Melinda to divorce.

Billionaire Bill Gates and his wife Melinda have announced in a joint statement that they have made the decision to end their marriage.

"After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage," the two said in a statement posted by Bill Gates' Twitter account on Monday.

"We no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in the next phase of our lives. 

"We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life," their statement said.

First virus cases dip in three months: WHO.

The worldwide weekly coronavirus infection rate has fallen for the first time since mid-February, with India and Brazil accounting for half of infections, the World Health Organisation says.

A total of 5.69 million cases have been reported globally over the past seven days compared to 5.73 million in the previous week, reversing a one-and-a-half-month upward trend.

"More cases of COVID-19 have been reported globally in the past two weeks than during the first six months of the pandemic," WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a media conference.

"India and Brazil account for more than half of last week's cases," he added.


However, coronavirus-related deaths increased from 88,000 to 93,000 last week, nearing January's record of about 100,000 weekly fatalities.

This brings the figures for total cases and deaths to more than 152 million and nearly 3.2 million respectively since the start of the pandemic.

The WHO is continuing to provide medical supplies and mobile hospitals to India, where new daily records are being registered and the weekly case count exceeds 400,000.

EU considering reopening to foreigners for summer.

The European Union's executive has recommended easing COVID-19 travel restrictions next month so foreign travellers can help boost the stricken tourism industry this summer.

Under current restrictions, people from only seven countries, including Australia and Singapore, can enter the EU on holiday. 

The reopening would require the agreement of all EU members who would then open their borders to those from countries with very low levels of COVID-19 or who have received the recommended dose of an EU authorised vaccine. That includes the Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson and Johnson or AstraZeneca versions.

The situation would then be reviewed every two weeks with an emergency brake mechanism for countries to act swiftly to close off access to countries where COVID is spiking.  

Germany busts global child porn site.

German prosecutors say they have busted one of the world's biggest international darknet platforms for child pornography, used by more than 400,000 registered members, including from the US, Australia and Canada.

Frankfurt prosecutors said in a statement together with the Federal Criminal Police Office that in mid-April three German suspects, said to be the administrators of the "Boystown" platform, were arrested along with a German user.


The authorities said the platform was "one of the world's biggest child pornography darknet platforms" and had been active at least since 2019. Pedophiles used it to exchange and watch pornography of children and toddlers, most of them boys, from all over the world.

Prosecutors wrote that they found "images of most severe sexual abuse of toddlers" among the photos and video material.

After the raids in mid-April, the online platform was shut down.

If this post brings up any issues for you, you can contact Bravehearts (an organisation providing support to victims of child abuse) here.

If you are concerned about the welfare of a child you can get advice from the Child Abuse Protection Hotline by calling 1800 688 009, or visiting their website. You can also call the 24-hour Child Abuse Report Line (131 478).

Around the world.

- Prince Harry has praised the world's frontline medical workers at a concert in Los Angeles in his first public appearance since the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral.

- A stadium full of fully vaccinated spectators in California have watched as Hollywood stars and musicians took to the stage for the Vax Live concert. J.Lo and the Foo Fighters performed, with video messages coming in from President Joe Biden and the Pope.

- A bomb has exploded near a school in western Afghanistan, wounding 21 people, many of them young students.

- With AAP

Feature image: Getty.