All posts tagged: plan

It’s your funeral! How to plan ahead for the best party you’ll never attend | Australian lifestyle

It’s your funeral! How to plan ahead for the best party you’ll never attend | Australian lifestyle

Years before the indomitable Joan Rivers died in 2014 she immortalised hopes for her own farewell in her memoir. “I want my funeral to be a huge showbiz affair with lights, cameras, action … I want Meryl Streep crying, in five different accents. I don’t want a eulogy; I want Bobby Vinton to pick up my head and sing Mr Lonely.” Needless to say some details were changed, but the resulting affair was perhaps even more spectacular than the queen of snark would have hoped for. Along with performances from Hugh Jackman and Broadway star Audra McDonald, it featured a eulogy from notorious shock-jock Howard Stern and the New York City Gay Men’s Chorus singing Big Spender. The bagpipers of the New York police department played as mourners escorted her body from the synagogue. Hunter S Thompson’s ashes go up in smoke in Colorado in August 2005. Photograph: Peter Mountain/AP Whether you would like to be shot across your favourite vista in the form of a firework (à la Hunter S Thompson), compressed into a …

What is Biden’s cease-fire plan for Israel and Hamas? Here’s what we know.

What is Biden’s cease-fire plan for Israel and Hamas? Here’s what we know.

A plan announced by President Biden for a “durable end to the war” recently renewed hope for a cease-fire deal between Israel and Hamas that has proved elusive for months. Biden described it as a comprehensive Israeli proposal, following intensive diplomacy and his conversations with leaders from Qatar, Egypt, Israel and other Middle Eastern countries. On Monday, the United Nations Security Council approved a U.S.-sponsored resolution to support the plan, a rare diplomatic victory for the Biden administration, which has faced criticism at the United Nations for its role supporting Israel, even from its closest friends. Israel’s military operations in Gaza, now in their ninth month, have displaced 75 percent of its population and left parts of the enclave battling with famine amid catastrophic humanitarian conditions, the United Nations says. More than 37,000 Palestinians have been killed, according to the Gaza Health Ministry, which does not distinguish between civilians and combatants, but says the majority of the dead are women and children. Israel estimates that about 1,200 people were killed in Hamas’s Oct. 7 attack …

Hundreds of prisoners to be released early in Scotland after MSPs back plan | UK News

Hundreds of prisoners to be released early in Scotland after MSPs back plan | UK News

Regulations to allow the emergency early release of prisoners will come into force after MSPs backed the Scottish government’s plan to ease pressure on the country’s jails. Around 514 prisoners will be released in four waves, starting at the end of this month. Only inmates serving short sentences of under four years who have 180 days or less left to serve will be considered for release. Prisoners serving life sentences, or those who are currently behind bars for sexual, domestic abuse or terror-based offences, will automatically be excluded from the scheme. Prison governors will also have the power to veto the release of any inmate they deem an “immediate risk” to a specific individual or group. Timescales:• Tranche one: Those with less than 45 days left to serve will be released on 26 and 27 June.• Tranche two: Those with 45-89 days left to serve will be released on 3 and 4 July.• Tranche three: Those with 90-134 days left to serve will be released on 10 and 11 July.• Tranche four: Those with 135-180 …

Hamas demands ‘complete halt’ to war in response to Gaza truce plan

Hamas demands ‘complete halt’ to war in response to Gaza truce plan

Back to homepage / Middle East As it happened Hamas gave its official response to the latest US-backed truce proposal for Gaza on Tuesday, calling for a “complete halt” to Israeli “aggression” as fighting raged in the Palestinian territory. The US said it was “evaluating” the response. Earlier, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced $404 million in new US assistance for the Palestinians, urging other countries to give more money to address Gaza’s humanitarian crisis. Read our liveblog to see how the day’s events unfolded. Issued on: 11/06/2024 – 01:42Modified: 11/06/2024 – 16:36 2 min Israeli military vehicles maneuver inside the Gaza Strip on June 10, 2024. © Amir Cohen, Reuters This liveblog is now closed. For all the latest head here. Summary: The US said Israel had accepted the three-phase plan for a ceasefire in Gaza. Sources with knowledge of the talks said Hamas welcomed the plan but proposed “amendments”. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced $404 million in new US assistance for the Palestinians during a summit in Jordan aimed at boosting humanitarian aid for …

Inside the hospital trialling a plan that Labour hopes can fix the NHS | NHS

Inside the hospital trialling a plan that Labour hopes can fix the NHS | NHS

Just two weeks after he was diagnosed with cancer, John Harvey was in a hospital ward on Thursday for a three-hour operation which he hopes will cure him. Harvey, 79, from east London, expected an anxious wait for treatment after being diagnosed with colon cancer but has benefited from a drive to cut waiting times at the London trust where he is being treated. “I thought the wait would be weeks and weeks,” he said. “I was surprised.” Cancer patient John Harvey in the elective surgery hub in the King George hospital, east London. Photograph: Andy Hall/The Observer Harvey, who was in hospital for an operation to remove part of his colon, and millions of others like him are on the frontline of a key election battleground: the NHS waiting list. Rishi Sunak said in January last year that he would fix the NHS, pledging that “waiting lists will fall and people will get the care they need more quickly”. The waiting list is 330,000 longer than when he made his pledge. Sunak and Labour …

Latest Israel-Hamas war news: Gantz poised to resign amid lack of plan

Latest Israel-Hamas war news: Gantz poised to resign amid lack of plan

Opposition leader Benny Gantz appears poised to follow through with his threat to resign from Israel’s war cabinet if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu doesn’t put forward a comprehensive postwar plan by Saturday. Such a plan was nowhere in sight on Friday evening as Netanyahu continued to distance himself from a cease-fire deal presented by President Biden last week as an Israeli proposal. Gantz is set to give remarks to the media Saturday evening after the end of Shabbat, according to a statement from his office. Israel’s Channel 12 news network reported that a meeting this week between Gantz and Netanyahu seeking to bring the pair to a consensus was unproductive. Gantz — one of three voting members of the war cabinet led by Netanyahu — gave the prime minister the ultimatum last month, urging him to develop a plan to find an alternative government for the Gaza Strip and facilitate the return of the dozens of Israeli hostages still held by Hamas there. “The choice is in your hands,” he said at the time, addressing …

Blinken to visit Middle East next week to push ceasefire plan as war enters ninth month

Blinken to visit Middle East next week to push ceasefire plan as war enters ninth month

Back to homepage / Middle East AS IT HAPPENED US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will visit the Middle East next week to push a plan for an Israel-Hamas ceasefire, the State Department announced Friday. Blinken, who will be paying his eighth visit to the region since the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel, will visit Israel and key US Arab partners Egypt, Jordan and Qatar from Monday through Wednesday, the State Department said. Read our blog to see how the day’s events unfolded. Issued on: 07/06/2024 – 03:21Modified: 07/06/2024 – 22:47 2 min Food and good stalls are set-up by vendors outside the burnt out ruins of the building (L) housing the United Nations Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA), in the Jabalia refugee camp, in the northern Gaza Strip on June 7, 2024. © Omar Al-Qattaa, AFP This blog is no longer being updated. For more coverage of the Israel-Hamas war, please click here. Summary: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will visit the Middle East next week to push a plan for an Israel-Hamas ceasefire, …

Labour’s plan for VAT on private schools highlights inequalities | Private schools

Labour’s plan for VAT on private schools highlights inequalities | Private schools

I’m writing as a hard-working GP in the NHS. I’ve voted Labour in the past but I will not be voting for Labour in this election. I do not agree with Labour’s VAT on private schools policy (What are Labour’s plans for ending tax breaks for private schools?, 29 May). I believe there is an angle that Keir Starmer hasn’t considered, which will have a significant impact on less privileged rural communities such as where I work in north Devon. I moved to a low socioeconomic area to provide good healthcare for the community, as my father did in the 1980s. My children do not attend the local state school as I do not feel it would provide them with a good education. They attend the excellent private day school that is nurturing them exactly as I could ever wish for. If Labour puts VAT on private schools then professionals like me will have to consider moving back to the more privileged areas where there are better-quality state schools for our children. The low socioeconomic …

Can Labour’s GB Energy plan future-proof UK’s power generation sector? | Labour

Can Labour’s GB Energy plan future-proof UK’s power generation sector? | Labour

Labour is to put a government-owned power company at the heart of the UK’s energy system for the first time since the privatisation of the industry in 1990, in one of Keir Starmer’s boldest pledges so far. Great British Energy, with £8bn of investment, forms the centrepiece of Labour’s promise to decarbonise the electricity supply by 2030. This would stop well short of any form of renationalisation: GB Energy would be a state-owned investment vehicle and company working alongside and often in partnership with the existing private sector suppliers. The plan is for it to be largely invisible to households, not offering electricity directly to consumers but financing and helping to build low-carbon infrastructure, from windfarms to – potentially – nuclear reactors. Earlier this week Starmer said: “It’s time for change. Labour will create a publicly owned clean energy company to power Britain’s future energy security – taking control of our energy supply to bring down bills.” But could GB Energy, to be based in Scotland, really bring a step-change to Britain’s energy future? Here …