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New South Wales SES operational update on floods

The SES has had 249 statewide requests for assistance, and made five flood rescues.

Today the SES will be focusing on these areas: the Lachlan River (Eugowra, Forbes, Condobilin and Euabalong); the Murrumbidgee River (Hay); the Namoi River (Wee Waa); the Macquarie River (Warren); and the Murray River (Wentworth).

Major flooding to continue in NSW inland catchments

There is a flooding update from AAP about the situation in New South Wales’s central west where many towns are still facing inundation.

Major flooding will continue in NSW’s inland catchments today, despite much of the state being bathed in sunshine on Thursday, weather bureau senior meteorologist Dean Narramore said.

“It is extremely wet out there and many areas are experiencing major flooding right now, even though the sun is shining,” he said.

Flood waters have inundated a building, rising above the door and window level
Parts of the central business district under water at Forbes, New South Wales. Photograph: Murray Mccloskey/EPA

The central west towns of Condoblin and Euabalong are now bracing for the worst after the Lachlan River reached 1.7 metres upstream at Forbes, just a fraction below the 1.8 metres peak recorded in 1952.

Macron says Aukus submarines deal a return to ‘nuclear confrontation’

The prime minister, Anthony Albanese, is in Bangkok (Murph will bring you more on the trip very soon) where he had a meeting with French president, Emmanuel Macron.

The meeting was described as “warm” – it helps when the guy who did you out of a multibillion-dollar submarine contract is no longer there.

Macron was not shy about bringing up Scott Morrison, accusing the former prime minister of stoking “nuclear confrontation” with China over the deal.

He spoke to reporters ahead of the Apec summit, AAP reports, about why the French deal had been chosen and what Morrison’s decision meant (at least in his view):

Australia will maintain the submarines themselves, and it is not confrontational to China because they are not nuclear-powered submarines.

But the choice made by [former] prime minister Morrison was the opposite, re-entering into nuclear confrontation.

Macron said the Aukus deal made Australia “completely dependent” on other nations. France still has an offer “on the table” to help Australia build diesel-powered submarines.

Albanese was less forthcoming, telling reporters:

We spoke about how we could have an increased engagement and cooperation in defence and security matters and I look forward to that.

Good morning, Amy Remeikis here to take you through the morning. Thank you to Martin for starting us off.

Josh Butler

Josh Butler

The federal government is promising an early childhood summit in the vein of the successful jobs and skills summit, as part of a new strategy for young children to be informed by a diverse group of experts including Yellow Wiggle Emma Watkins and former South Australian premier Jay Weatherill.

The social services minister, Amanda Rishworth, and the early childhood minister, Anne Aly, will announce the new Early Years Strategy today, bringing work done by departments including education, social services, health and the National Indigenous Australians Agency into one coordinated plan.

Social services minister Amanda Rishworth.
Social services minister Amanda Rishworth. Photograph: Lukas Coch/AAP

“Without a coordinated approach across government, there is a lack of ultimate responsibility and accountability for the wellbeing, education and development of Australia’s children,” Rishworth said in a statement.

The strategy will also see the launch of a “major” national early years summit in Parliament House on 17 February next year, which the government says will be similar to the jobs and skills summit held in September.

Those aforementioned departments will be involved, as will treasury and the prime minister’s department, with 100 stakeholders including industry experts, sector leaders and families to meet for the summit.

“It’s time we ended the isolated policy approach and leverage the mountain of evidence that exists to best support our children,” Rishworth said.

“Our national summit in particular will help start a conversation on how to best support Australia’s children and their families in the early years.”

Consultation on the strategy will begin in January 2023, with public submissions open until April. The strategy will be informed by an advisory panel including Weatherill, national children’s commissioner Anne Hollonds, and Watkins, the former Yellow Wiggle.

New South Wales faces ‘months of floods’

New South Wales faces “months of floods” thanks to the La Niña weather pattern that has had the east coast of Australia in its wet grip for the past two and more years, according to the state’s SES boss.

SES commissioner Carlene York told the Sydney Morning Herald: “We’ll be in floods for months.”

“Even if it doesn’t rain there will be floods until after Christmas,” York said. “This is the biggest flood event the NSW SES has ever faced.”

Hundreds of residents in the state’s central west are still facing chaos as the worst flooding ever recorded in the region continues to wreak havoc.

Here are some pictures of the devastation:


Good morning and welcome to our live blog. Amy Remeikis will be here shortly to helm the day but in the meantime here are some of the main stories making news today.

  • A Dutch court has found three men guilty of the murder of 298 people – including 38 Australians – on board flight MH17, which was shot down by a Russian surface-to-air missile when it was flying over eastern Ukraine in 2014. The court handed down sentences of life imprisonment to Russian nationals Igor Girkin and Sergey Dubinskiy and Ukrainian Leonid Kharchenko, after finding them guilty of bringing down the plane and the murder of everyone on board. Several relatives of the Australian victims were in court to hear the verdicts and some also heard their impact statements read out to the court.

Australian Sean Turnell is shown seated during a ceremony inside the Insein prison in Yangon, Myanmar, shortly before his release.
Australian Sean Turnell during a ceremony inside the Insein prison in Yangon, Myanmar, shortly before his release. Photograph: AP
  • Albanese’s latest summitry in Thailand will make news today, along with his social services minister, Amanda Rishworth, who is announcing the government’s new early years strategy for young children. The funeral of Cassius Turvey, the Indigenous teenager allegedly murdered on his way home from school in Perth, will be held today.

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