The Australian and international news stories you need to know today, Tuesday June 2.


Trump calls governors “weak” and a “bunch of jerks” as US protests continue.

US President Donald Trump has called state governors “weak”, as he urges them to crack down on protests over racial inequality on the seventh night of looting and vandalism.

“You’ve got to arrest people, you have to track people, you have to put them in jail for 10 years and you’ll never see this stuff again,” Trump reportedly said in a video conference with national security officials and top police, according to Insider.

“You have to dominate,” he told the governors. “If you don’t dominate, you’re wasting your time – they’re going to run over you, you’re going to look like a bunch of jerks.”

Trump said the federal government was going to clamp down “very strong” on the violence.


Dozens of cities across the United States remain under curfews, at a level not seen since riots following the 1968 assassination of civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr.

The National Guard has been deployed in 23 states and Washington DC.

One person has been killed in Louisville, Kentucky, overnight where police and National Guard troops returned fire while trying to disperse a crowd.


The unrest, which erupted as the country was easing lengthy lockdowns to stop the spread of the coronavirus, began with peaceful protests over the death of a black man, George Floyd, in police custody in Minneapolis last Monday.

Video footage showed a white police officer kneeling on the neck of Floyd, 46, for nearly nine minutes before he died.

Derek Chauvin, a since-fired 44-year-old police officer, has been charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Trump has condemned the killing of Floyd and promised justice, but has made no major public statement to address the crisis. In tweets, he has described violent protesters as “thugs” and threatened to use the US military.

The brother of George Floyd did receive a phone call from Trump, which he says “lasted probably two minutes. The conversation was okay”.

He is calling for protesters to stop the violence and “do this another way”.


Australia’s ‘youngest COVID-19 death’ tests negative.

The Queensland man thought to be Australia’s youngest COVID-19 victim has tested negative to the virus after his death.

Nathan Turner’s death last week had baffled authorities, and placed residents in his central Queensland town of Blackwater on notice, after an initial coronavirus test following his death returned a positive result.

But a workmate of Mr Turner’s fiancee on Monday revealed a second test conducted after his death came back negative.

nathan turner
Nathan Turner. Image: Facebook.

"We have just got word from our staff member Nathan's partner that his autopsy report has come in and Nathan has been CLEARED as COVID 19 NEGATIVE.," Kelly Bunyoung posted on Facebook.

"Blackwater can now rest easy."

Queensland Health later confirmed the negative test.

"The Coroner tonight advised that further tests have returned negative for COVID-19. He is yet to determine the man's cause of death," the state's chief health office Jeannette Young said in a statement.

Mr Turner, 30, had serious underlying health issues before experiencing coronavirus symptoms in the weeks before he died and was not tested while alive.


Three new cases in NSW as restrictions dramatically ease.

NSW reported three new cases from more than 5700 tests on Monday, as pubs and restaurants reopened for 50 guests at a time. The new cases are all returned travellers in hotel quarantine.

The loosening of restrictions comes in time for the June long weekend with libraries, art galleries, museums, zoos, reptile parks and aquariums also reopening from Monday.

Coronavirus Restrictions Ease Further As Australia's COVID-19 Infection Rate Continues To Decline
Two young women enjoy a drink together on the first day of pub's reopening in NSW. Image: James D. Morgan/Getty.

Queensland, Victoria, South Australia, and WA all significantly loosened restrictions on the first day of winter.

You can read what's changed in your state or territory here. 

Australia needs more aerial firefighting capabilities for future bushfires.

Australia will need enhanced aerial firefighting capabilities in the future as it faces extended bushfire seasons, experts say.

A bushfires royal commission hearing is due to resume today, with a focus on aerial firefighting capabilities.

The national council for fire and emergency services says demand for aerial firefighting resources is likely to continue to increase.

SA bushfires december
The bushfire inquiry has heard that firefighters are going to need more planes ahead of future seasons. Image: Getty.

In a submission to a separate Senate bushfires inquiry, the Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council said firefighters were likely to face extended, hotter fire seasons in the future with more days of extreme fire danger.

"There is an imperative to continue to develop the current national collaborative arrangements to ensure efficient use of resources and to provide reliable access to surge capacity," AFAC said.

In a report for the royal commission, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau noted aerial firefighting activity during 2019-20 was around four times that of other recent bushfire seasons.

Victoria's coldest June start since 1943.

Melbourne recorded its lowest maximum June 1 temperature since 1943, reaching a top of just 11.2C on Monday.

Much of the state was lashed with strong winds, particularly in Port Phillip Bay where St Kilda copped wind gusts of up to 83km/h.


The chilly start to June has been good news for the snow slopes, with the resorts expecting an influx of tourists now the virus restrictions are easing.

Around the world.

- Spain is reporting no daily deaths from coronavirus for the first time since March.

The current COVID-19 figures.

- Russian President Vladimir Putin has set July 1 for a vote on constitutional amendments, including one that will allow his rule until 2036.

- Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has failed to appear on a routine call with Westminster Magistrates Court, due to 'health reasons'.

- 23 people have been arrested in protests in London over the death of George Floyd.

- With AAP

Feature image: Getty.