Morning Mail: Djokovic triumphs, hundreds of school abuse claims revealed, $300m boost to arts

<span>Photograph: Action Press/Rex/Shutterstock</span>
Photograph: Action Press/Rex/Shutterstock

Good morning. We’re reporting exclusively on the 381 civil claims made against the Victorian government in the past 12 years for historical child sexual abuse in state schools. Figures drawn from documents obtained under freedom of information laws show what one lawyer calls “the tip of the iceberg” of such crimes.

Meanwhile, Novak Djokovic has enjoyed a dominant Australian Open win. And the Israeli prime minister has announced a series of punitive steps against Palestinians following a deadly attack.


Tennis player Novak Djokovic from Serbia celebrates in the final at the Australian Open
Novak Djokovic celebrates after his grand slam victory over Stefanos Tsitsipas. Photograph: Action Press/REX/Shutterstock


  • Jerusalem | The Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has announced a series of punitive steps against Palestinians in the wake of the deadliest terrorist attack in Jerusalem in years in which a gunman killed seven people outside a synagogue.

  • UK politics | The British prime minister, Rishi Sunak, has sacked the Conservative party chair, Nadhim Zahawi, after he was found to have breached the ministerial code by failing to declare the HMRC investigation into his tax affairs.

  • Tyre Nichols | Legal experts and civil rights advocates say the harrowing video footage that showed a group of Memphis police officers delivering blow after blow to Tyre Nichols underscores the need for broad reforms of policing in the US.

  • China Covid | Public anger is growing in China, where the president, Xi Jinping, abruptly reversed three years of “zero Covid” lockdowns in favour of a “let it rip” strategy – for which its detractors say no one was ready.

  • Iran attack | A series of powerful explosions have damaged an Iranian government weapons factory in the central city of Isfahan in what officials say was a coordinated drone attack.

Full Story

Refugees and supporters rally outside the Immigration Department in Melbourne, Wednesday, August 24, 2022.
Refugees and supporters rally outside the Immigration Department in Melbourne. Photograph: Joel Carrett/AAP

Who gets to immigrate to Australia?

As the Albanese government promises to create more permanent pathways for migrants, Jane Lee speaks with immigration historian Dr Rachel Stevens about how different policies and world events have shaped Australia’s immigrant intake over decades. Full Story also hears from Lilliana Sanchez and Marina Khan about their experiences migrating to Australia. For more, our interactive graphic shows how immigration policies have changed the makeup of Australia.


In a 2022 literary scandal, the acclaimed Australian author John Hughes was found to have plagiarised whole sentences from Leo Tolstoy and F Scott Fitzgerald. When a former student discovered he was among those greats, his reaction was complicated.

“Lots of people can imagine that hurt, I assume,” writes Joseph Earp. “But I can’t imagine that many other people understand the way it felt good, too.”

Not the news

Ralphie, a French bulldog at a New York animal shelter.
Ralphie, a French bulldog at a New York animal shelter. Photograph: Facebook

An animal shelter in New York deviated from the usual pet adoption ads that promise a sweet-tempered, friendly companion with its honest appraisal of Ralphie, a French bulldog, as a “whole jerk”. The refreshingly honest adoption bio for the 14-month-old pup needing a home proclaims him a “fire-breathing demon” with boundary issues. Anyone?

The world of sport

Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka celebrates with the trophy after winning her final match against Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina.
Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka celebrates with the trophy after winning her final match against Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina. Photograph: Loren Elliott/Reuters

Media roundup

Further restrictions on alcohol in Alice Springs are likely when a report is handed back to the state’s government this week, NT News says, after the rise of antisocial behaviour in the town led Anthony Albanese to push for a tougher change. The Australian reports that this country is expanding its strategic footprint in Solomon Islands to help push back China’s Pacific influence. The Age speaks to the mother of an Indigenous woman who died in custody, ahead of the release of coroner’s findings on the case.

What’s happening today

  • Commuter havoc | Sydney commuters are being told to “brace for chaos” as the Rail, Tram and Bus Union says thousands of bus trips will be cut across the city from today.

  • Auckland floods | Residents in Auckland, New Zealand have been warned of more heavy rain today; flooding since Friday has killed four people.

  • Murdoch v Crikey | Guardian Australia will cover the next hearing in a defamation lawsuit by Lachlan Murdoch against the operators of Crikey.

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Brain teaser

And finally, here are the Guardian’s crosswords and free Wordiply game to keep you entertained throughout the day – with plenty more on the Guardian’s Puzzles app for iOS and Android. Until tomorrow.

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