The southeastern United States will be the first to see price rises at the pumps due to the supply disruption caused by the shutdown of the country's top fuel pipeline network - and demand has already picked up as drivers fill their tanks, industry experts said on Sunday. The attack forced Colonial Pipeline to shut down its entire system on Friday. The network ships more than 2.5 million barrels per day (bpd) of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel from the Gulf Coast to populous southeast and northeast states.
Lindsay Arnold welcomed her first baby, daughter Sage Jill, with husband Samuel Lightner Cusick in November
Israel's attorney-general secured a deferment on Sunday of a court hearing on planned evictions of Palestinians in Jerusalem, a session that had threatened to stoke more violence in the holy city and heighten international concern.The government could now have some breathing room to try to defuse a tinderbox situation in Jerusalem, where the court case and friction during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan have led to clashes between Palestinians and Israeli police.The Israeli Supreme Court had been due on Monday to hear appeals against the planned evictions of several Palestinian families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem, an area captured by Israel in a 1967 war.A lower court had found in favor of Jewish settlers' claim to the land on which the Palestinians' homes are located, a decision seen by Palestinians as a bid by Israel to drive them from contested Jerusalem.
Party leader struggles to complete shake-up of his top team
You can't do that, Luka.
Competition watchdog to hold public inquiry into Crown merger with Star casino groupExclusive: ACCC chairman Rod Sims says he will look at the impacts on competition if gambling companies are allowed to merge The Crown casino tower at Barangaroo in Sydney. The troubled gambling company may merge with rival group Star Entertainment. Photograph: Jessica Hromas/The Guardian
Jared Walsh hit a two-run double and the Los Angeles Angels held on to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 2-1 on Sunday afternoon in the rubber game of a three-game series in Anaheim, Calif. Angels starter Jose Quintana walked five and struck out six over four innings, allowing two hits and one run as six pitchers shut down the Dodgers on four hits. Right-hander Aaron Sledgers (2-0) got the win by pitching 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief.
‘A step too far’: Liberal senator James Paterson speaks out against India travel banInfluential Coalition parliamentarian says he worries about the precedent setFollow our Australia live news blog Liberal senator James Paterson says the travel ban criminalising Australians returning from India is an ‘extreme measure’ he hopes never to see again. Photograph: Mike Bowers/The Guardian
Courtesy Rachel BellesenJust before 8 p.m. on Oct. 8, 2020, a 911 dispatcher in Sanders County, Montana, received a strange phone call. The woman on the other end said she was calling from a gas station in Hot Springs—a tiny, rural town located on the Flathead Indian Reservation. Her voice was shaky, her delivery broken. She could not give her exact address. But one thing came through loud and clear: “I need the police,” she said. “...I killed someone.”The woman on the phone that night was Rachel Bellesen, the 38-year-old coordinator at the nearby Abbie Shelter for domestic violence survivors. The shelter director, Hilary Shaw, described Bellesen as a "powerhouse" and a natural caretaker, one of her most talented shelter employees but also one of the quietest. Bellesen once sewed her mother-in-law a quilt out of her grandchildren’s old t-shirts, Shaw said. When a friend was having trouble conceiving, she volunteered to carry her twins.Bellesen was also a survivor of domestic violence herself—the victim of a years-long cycle of physical abuse that propelled her toward the night in question, standing at a swimming hole outside Hot Springs, alone with her ex-husband and a Glock26 in her hands.Shaw is one of several advocates now pressuring prosecutors to turn from tradition and clear Bellesen of her crime—completely.“An injustice has been done,” Shaw told The Daily Beast in an interview last week. “A mistake has been made. And the right thing to do is to fully vindicate Rachel."Bellesen did not have an easy upbringing. Growing up in Washington State, she lived with an alcoholic mother and a rotating cast of father figures—one of whom Bellesen says sexually abused her until she was 15. When she became pregnant by another man at age 16, her mother moved to Montana and refused to take her pregnant daughter with her. She says her mother told her: “We’re not taking pregnant kids to Montana.”The man who impregnated Bellesen was Jacob Glace, a local drug dealer who lived down the street from her in Leavenworth, Washington. The day they met—when Glace came to her friend’s house to sell them weed—he was 23, and she was 15. The pair began dating quickly thereafter, and she was pregnant with her first child in less than a year. When her mom left for Montana, the now-homeless 16-year-old moved in with Glace. She had her second child one year later.Bellesen says Glace was routinely abusive. In 2004, court records show, a neighbor called 911 to report that Glace had dragged Bellesen out of her apartment by her hair and thrown her to the ground. When police arrived, according to an incident report, they found Glace “extremely intoxicated” and the door to the apartment splintered. Bellesen told officers she was trying to separate from Glace but that he wouldn’t leave her alone. The officers documented redness on the left side of her face and scratches up her arm; she presented them with a tuft of hair she said he’d pulled out. Glace pleaded guilty to fourth-degree assault and the couple divorced later that year.Without Glace, who she says always controlled the couple’s finances and social life, Bellesen struggled to take care of two young children on her own. She grappled with alcoholism—a common response to domestic violence—and was briefly homeless. As a result, she lost custody of her two children. With nowhere else to turn, she says, she reached out to her mom, who offered to help her relocate to Montana. At age 21, she got on the train with nothing more than a backpack of belongings and settled in the small mountain town of Whitefish.But Glace would not leave her alone. Although he had full custody, he let Bellesen take the children and came to Whitefish often to visit them. In 2009, he moved to Montana full time, to a tiny town an hour and a half south of where she lived. Bellesen said he continued to harass her from there, constantly threatening to take away the kids if she didn’t do what he wanted. She continued to struggle with alcoholism, and says she “basically lived day to day,” working entry level jobs and entering into even more unhealthy relationships with men.By 2012, Bellesen says she was determined to turn her life around. She was working on staying sober and had enrolled in a college program to become a substance abuse counselor. That was also the year she met Corey Bellesen, her husband of nearly a decade, on Match.com. (They were married in December of that year, she said, “which many might think was rather fast, but he is my best friend and I can't imagine life without him.”) She started volunteering at the Abbie Shelter and quickly found herself drawn to working with other domestic violence survivors. The shelter hired her on full-time in 2018—the same year she completed her bachelor’s degree.Though Bellesen was sober, stable, and in a job and relationship she loved, she says Glace continued to exert control over her life—mostly through their children. On the night of Oct. 8, according to her attorney, Bellesen agreed to meet with Glace outside of his home because of a threatening comment he had made about their son. She was hoping to smooth things over without anyone getting hurt, but when she arrived, she says, Glace attacked her and attempted to rape her, ripping her clothes and leaving scratches and bruises across her body. In the heat of the moment, she says, it felt like the last 16 years had never happened; like she was a teengaer again, and he was finally going to kill her. She pulled out her handgun and shot him.“I thank the universe every second that I am still alive today,” Bellesen said in a statement provided to The Daily Beast. “None of this ever should have happened.”“The justice system, the very institution that is in place to protect people from violence and abuse, has consistently failed to offer any protection for me, for my children, for all of the other women and children abused and impacted by Jake.” Why Are There So Many Empty Beds in Domestic Violence Shelters?There are no national statistics on how often women successfully cite self-defense in the murder of their abusive partners, but the numbers surrounding it paint a grim picture. Nearly 60 percent of people in women’s prisons have a history of physical or sexual abuse, according to the ACLU; as many as 90 percent of those incarcerated for killing a man say they were previously been abused by him. Feminist legal scholars argue that self-defense law is biased toward men, favoring cases of one-off attacks by strangers when most violence against women is perpetrated by someone they know.In 2006, Cyntoia Brown, a 16-year-old from Nashville, Tennessee, was convicted of first-degree murder—for killing an older man who’d picked her up for sex when she thought she saw him reaching for a gun. At the time, Brown was in an abusive relationship with a drug dealer who forced her into prositution; she spent 15 years in jail before being granted clemency in 2019. That same year, in upstate New York, Nicole Addimando was convicted of second-degree murder for killing the husband she said sexually and physically abused her for years. Brittany Smith, a young woman in Alabama, tried to use the Stand Your Ground law as a defense after killing her alleged rapist in 2018. Sexual assault examiners found 33 injuries on her body—consistent with being held down, strangled, and raped—but a judge ruled against her, saying she doubted Smith had reason to believe she was in serious danger when she pulled the trigger.On Oct. 8, 2020, after Bellesen made her 911 call, police arrived and took her to a nearby hospital. She told two nurses that her ex-husband had attempted to assault her; officers there collected her clothes and took pictures of the injuries to her body. When they asked to question her further, she invoked her right to have a lawyer present. But her husband told officers she had given him the exact same story when he arrived to help her that day: There was a struggle, Glace tried to rape her, and she shot him in self-defense.The next day, the county attorney charged Bellesen with deliberate homicide.One thing we do know about domestic violence is that abusers are often repeat offenders. One study of nearly 700 British men arrested for domestic violence found that half of them were involved in at least one more incident in the next three years. Nearly one in five re-offended with a different partner than the one they initially abused.In the years after Bellesen and Glace divorced, Glace was charged three more times with domestic violence. In 2010, shortly after moving to Montana, he was found guilty of partner or family member assault after he pushed his new wife to the ground and choked her. In May 2020, he was charged with the same crime in another county after he allegedly screamed at a different partner and attempted to rip the phone out of her hands when she called 911. The month before, he had been charged with assault in yet another county, after allegedly hitting his girlfriend in the face, smashing a chair, and slamming her into a wall when he barged into the bedroom, yelling.“He was very abusive across the board, sexually, physically, emotionally and financially,” the third woman told the Daily Inter Lake newspaper at a court hearing, adding that the two had lived together until Glace hit her in front of her kids.Bellesen was in jail for three weeks before prosecutors lowered bail enough for her to get out. For the next several months, Bellesen says, she was too traumatized to leave the house. She had panic attacks just thinking about going to the grocery store; loud noises and close contact with others terrified her. The county, meanwhile, had called in a state assistant attorney general and a private attorney from Missoula to aid in the prosecution. (The private attorney, former county prosecutor Thorin Geist, previously won a “dishonorable mention” from the ACLU of Montana for refusing to let a pregnant woman change her hearing schedule to attend drug treatment. A week later, he charged her with criminal endangerment of a fetus for testing positive for narcotics.)Bellesen eventually secured the help of a pro-bono defense attorney, Lance Jasper, who told The Daily Beast he was convinced of her innocence after one conversation. He was so convinced that the state had no case, in fact, that he made them an offer he’d never attempted in more than 20 years in practice: He told the state he would show them his full case file—the entirety of Bellensen’s defense—and would give them a full year to prosecute if they still wanted to do so. After that, the case would be dismissed with prejudice—meaning they would not be able to take it up again, and Bellesen’s record would be cleared.The prosecutors refused. Instead, on April 9, three months before the case was supposed to go to trial, the state filed a motion to drop the case without prejudice. They claimed they were still waiting on the results of forensic tests and needed more time to decide whether or not to proceed. Bellesen’s name would not be cleared; she would instead have to wait until an unspecified “later date” to know if she would have to stand trial. She Fought Against Domestic Violence. Cops Say Her Boyfriend Killed Her.Prosecutors do not usually drop such cases with prejudice. Karla Fischer, an attorney and consultant who has worked on more than 200 self-defense cases in which domestic violence was involved, said she can remember two in which the charges were dropped at all—never mind with prejudice. Prosecutors are often under pressure from the deceased’s family to seek justice, or from the community to seem tough on crime, she said. Often, they will offer battered women a plea deal to a lower charge, but rarely will they drop the charges completely.“I think he’s done the right thing,” Fischer said of the prosecutor in this case. “After he gets more information, and if he still doesn't have the evidence to prosecute, then he should do the right thing and dismiss them with prejudice.”But Bellesen’s advocates are not satisfied. Shaw, the director of the Abbie Shelter, argued that the charges should never have been filed in the first place, and would hang over Bellesen for her entire life if they were not dismissed entirely. Dismissing them without prejudice, she said, “is not acknowledging the harm that has been done” by the prosecution. “It really just seems like we’re being told we should be happy with what we’ve got, and we aren’t,” she said.Jasper, meanwhile, said he felt the charges were riddled with sexism. If a man had shot another man in rural Montana after an attempted rape, he said, prosecutors would never have charged him with murder. “If this was flipped around any other way, they would have thrown her a parade,” he told The Daily Beast.Even Fischer said she was happy Bellesen had advocates pushing for her full vindication.“Victims—especially those who have lived in a chronic violence situation for a long time—they’ve never had a chance for it to be over,” she said. “Something that is final, that means this is really over, would mean so much to her psychologically.”“The definition of advocacy is to push for something that’s really premature,” she added. “We want to push for something better and I think they’re right to push for this to truly be over for this woman.”Jasper says he plans to oppose the state’s motion at the next hearing on May 25. Bellesen, meanwhile, is working from home, helping out the Abbie Shelter as best she can from behind the scenes and completing an internship with a food magazine. (She has always been an avid baker.) She says the behavior of prosecutors in her case, along with her work at the shelter, has opened her eyes to the injustices of the legal system and emboldened her to speak out. Despite her shyness, she is talking occasionally to the media, and has even allowed a camera crew to follow her around for a possible TV episode. “Instead of continuing to hide and feel shame for the abuse that I have suffered, I am empowered to stand up and speak out against what has happened to me.” she told The Daily Beast. “The problem is so much bigger than just my case.”Shaw, who has launched a public pressure campaign to get the state attorney general to drop the charges with prejudice, said it is just this transformation that makes Bellesen’s case so tragic.“She's the success story,” Shaw said. “She survived an extremely challenging childhood with great risks, survived this horrible, abusive relationship, met her husband, had this thriving marriage, and created this really wonderful, thriving life.”“She made it to the other side and Jake could not leave her alone,” she added. “That's why this case is so painful, is he is still abusing her from the other side of the veil.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? 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(Bloomberg) -- A bidding war has erupted for Crown Resorts Ltd. with rival casino operator Star Entertainment Group Ltd. proposing an all-stock merger and Blackstone Group Inc. sweetening its cash takeover bid.Star said its offer would create an Australian gaming and hospitality giant with a market value of A$12 billion ($9.4 billion) and announced plans to cut costs across the combined group. Minutes earlier, U.S. private-equity firm Blackstone raised its offer for Crown by 4% to A$8.36 billion.Crown said it’s assessing both proposals.Bidders are circling Crown while its cornered by regulatory investigations. A damning inquiry in February found the company was unfit to run its new Sydney casino following years of money laundering at properties in Perth and Melbourne, which are now the subject of fresh probes.The Star proposal offers Crown’s largest shareholder, billionaire James Packer, a potential path forward after he failed at least twice to sell his stake.Shares of Star, best known for its Sydney casino, leaped 8.2% to A$4.23 at 10:21 a.m. in Sydney. Crown jumped 6.1% to A$12.86, valuing the Melbourne-based company at A$8.7 billion.Crown Holders Spoilt For Choice After Wild Monday: M&A SnapshotStar announced a nil-premium offer of 2.68 of its shares for each Crown share -- the equivalent of A$10.48 a share based on Star’s closing price Friday.Star’s bid also includes a cash alternative of A$12.50 per share for as much as 25% of Crown’s issued shares. Assuming the cash component is fully taken up, the offer equates to a value of A$7.44 billion, according to Bloomberg calculations.That’s way below Crown’s market value. But once savings and benefits from the merger are included, Star said its proposal implies a potential value of A$14 per Crown share.Star said it can deliver between A$150 million and A$200 million in annual cost savings that would have a net value of A$2 billion. The company also plans a sale and leaseback of the enlarged group’s property portfolio.(Updates with details of the offer throughout)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Sydney and NSW Covid-19 restrictions: what you can and can’t do under new coronavirus rules New Covid restrictions for the greater Sydney region, including Wollongong, the Central Coast and the Blue Mountains, have been extended for another week. Can you have visitors? Is mask-wearing compulsory? Is travelling permitted? Here’s what you can and can’t doCovid NSW hotspots: list and map of Sydney and regional coronavirus case locationsDownload the free Guardian app Greater Sydney Covid-19 rules and restrictions. Check our guide to the new NSW coronavirus rules around mask-wearing, public transport, singing and dancing and home visitors. Photograph: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images
(Bloomberg) -- Iron ore futures leaped higher as trading opened on Monday, extending a record run amid rampant Chinese demand and a wider surge in commodity prices as the global economy recovers.Futures in Singapore jumped more than 10% to hit a fresh record high of $226 a ton. The steelmaking raw material is surging as strong demand from top buyer China leaves supplies stretched. Prices breached $200 for the first time only last week.“This sector is very, very hot, and just when China’s steel demand impulse will ease is perhaps the biggest question of 2021,” Vivek Dhar, commodities analyst at Commonwealth Bank of Australia, said in Bloomberg Television interview. “Supply is still not able to meet that strong demand.”Iron ore is just one of a sweep of materials from copper to crops that have marched higher in recent months. Bloomberg’s gauge of spot commodity prices finished last week at its highest in nearly a decade. Copper also extended its record rally Monday, soaring to $10,500 a ton in early trade.Steel prices have jumped in China as heavy users like the construction and manufacturing sectors enjoy a busy period, as well as enjoying tailwinds from stimulus measures. Steelmakers in the rest of the world such as ArcelorMittal SA are also enjoying a boom as markets bounce back from the pandemic.“There is a chance that ex-China demand can come back to such an extent that we still see steel demand pick up globally and that will see iron ore demand remain at these elevated levels,” CBA’s Dhar said.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
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(Bloomberg) -- The Indian rupee’s recent gains could be short-lived as pressure grows on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration to announce a nationwide lockdown to curb a deadly wave of coronavirus infections.The prospect of stricter curbs is reviving memories of last year when similar measures dragged India’s economy into its worst contraction in four decades. It’s also threatening to weaken the rupee, which is among Asia’s top three performers this month, thanks to heavy foreign inflows for initial public offerings, a dovish Federal Reserve and a glut of dollars at state-run banks.“The recovery in the rupee in recent weeks reflects the softer dollar and weaker import demand as restrictions were imposed,” Khoon Goh, head of Asia research at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. “If a nationwide lockdown were to be implemented, we could see some near-termweakness in the rupee.”A technical gauge is also signaling that the rupee’s advance maybe losing momentum. The dollar-rupee’s slow stochastics, a momentum indicator, shows that the currency pair is in oversold territory. The rupee rose 0.8% last week to 73.51 per dollar.Goh forecasts the rupee to fall to 76 per dollar in the second quarter but expects further declines to be limited by a reduction in imports.India’s capital extended its lockdown for another week while the nation reported 403,736 new virus cases on Sunday, and more than 4,000 Covid-19 deaths for a second day. Modi’s political allies, top business leaders and even U.S. President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser have said lockdowns could be the only way to stem the world’s worst virus outbreak.Analysts have already trimmed India’s growth forecasts as individual states tightened restrictions, but a nationwide curb could deal a much larger blow to the economy. The Reserve Bank of India stepped in last week to provide loan relief and pledged to inject 500 billion rupees ($6.8 billion) of liquidity to support growth.Inflation data on Wednesday is expected to provide more economic cues. Consumer prices are forecast to have climbed 4.1% in April from a year earlier, the slowest pace since January, to stay within the RBI’s 2%-6% target range, which would provide room for more support measures. However, signs of more quantitative easing would be bad news for the rupee.The currency could remain supported as expectations of a surge in IPOs this year keeps inflows coming, although its near-term trend points to a downside as virus cases show no sign of slowing.Below are the key Asian economic data and events due this week:Monday, May 10: Australia business confidence and retail salesTuesday, May 11: New Zealand retail card spending, Japan household spending, China CPI and PPI, Philippine 1Q GDP, Malaysia 1Q GDP and BoP current account balanceWednesday, May 12: India CPI and industrial productionThursday, May 13: Japan BoP current account balance, BSP rate decisionFriday, May 14: New Zealand businessNZ manufacturing PMIFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.