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Morning Briefing: August 7, 2018

07/08/2018 News desk

Good morning. Here’s what you need to know to start your day with our daily briefing, compiled by Vidisha Kemkar.

UK heatwave threatens food supplies as farmers warn of shortage 

A customer looks at the fruit and vegetables at a branch of Asda in south London, on January 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Justin TALLIS A customer looks at the fruit and vegetables at a branch of Asda in south London, on January 10, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Justin TALLIS Food supplies are being threatened by the heatwave , with farmers warning of a “genuine shortage of crops”. Lettuce yields are down by a quarter, sending prices up 22% year on year. Onions, broccoli, and cauliflowers are also affected and carrot yields are likely to be down at least 30%, pushing up prices nearly 55%, according to reports. With temperatures set to remain above average until October, farmers called for financial help from retailers. (Mirror) Meanwhile, in the wake of recent scorching temperatures and water shortages, a report from the Institute of Mechanical Engineers has warned that increasingly frequent droughts, floods and superstorms are set to drive water utility costs higher. (The Telegraph) Amid global heatwaves, wildfires and drought, scientists have warned that things could get considerably worse under a future scenario dubbed “hothouse Earth”. (Independent)

Labour MPs in secret plot to oust Corbyn amid anti-Semitism row

Moderate Labour MPs have been holding secret meetings in a luxury farmhouse to plot a takeover of the party, it was claimed last night. Around 12 MPs are said to have met at the Sussex holiday estate at least twice to plan the fightback. The group was said to have included former leadership candidate Liz Kendall and Stephen Kinnock, the former party leader’s son. (Daily Mail)

UK ‘to demand Russia hands over Salisbury Novichok attack suspects’

The UK is set to demand Russia extradites two people suspected of carrying out the Salisbury nerve agent attack, according to reports. While the request is almost certain to be rejected out of hand by the Russian authorities, it will likely reignite the bitter diplomatic row which erupted following the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, in March. (Evening Standard)

Barry Chuckle died after a secret cancer battle, says brother

The Chuckle Brothers, Barry (left) and Paul Elliott, arrive at Southwark Crown Court in London © PA The Chuckle Brothers, Barry (left) and Paul Elliott, arrive at Southwark Crown Court in London Entertainer Barry Chuckle’s death came after a secret battle with bone cancer that spread to his lungs, his eldest brother has said. The veteran entertainer, real name Barry Elliott, died at the weekend at the age of 73. He found fame performing alongside his brother Paul Elliott as the Chuckle Brothers in BBC comedy show ChuckleVision which ran for 21 series from 1987 to 2009. (Evening Standard)

In Depth: What DNA from pet foxes teaches us about dogs and humans

Breeding foxes to be docile has also produced anatomical changes associated with domestication, such as floppy ears. © National Geographic Breeding foxes to be docile has also produced anatomical changes associated with domestication, such as floppy ears. For nearly 60 years, Russian scientists have bred foxes to be tame—or aggressive. A new study looking at the genomes of the two groups shows that the experiment has changed the animals’ DNA in surprising ways. The research has relevance for understanding social behavior across animals and even humans. (National Geographic)

Video of the day: Moment hero officer rescues boy hanging from fifth-floor

Hero officer rescues boy © Newsflare Hero officer rescues boy A hero police officer rescued a four-year-old boy hanging from a fifth-floor window after his head got stuck in the window grills. (Newsflare)

On this day

High-wire artist walks between the Twin Towers © Alan Welner/AP High-wire artist walks between the Twin Towers 1974: Frenchman Philippe Petit walks out onto a cable he's illegally rigged 1,350 feet in the air between the Twin Towers of New York City's World Trade Center. Petit performs a 45-minute high-wire act, complete with a bit of joyful dancing, to the cheers of astounded onlookers. (Bing)

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