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Australia’s first evacuation flight from Afghanistan lands to safety

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Australia’s first evacuation flight from Afghanistan has landed at a base in the Middle East

The Australian Defence Force evacuation flight from Afghanistan landed back at a military base in the United Arab Emirates.

The rescue mission collected 26 passengers from Kabul airport.

A Royal Australian Air Force C130-J Hercules aircraft arrives at RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland, to transfer passengers onto an awaiting KC-30A Multi-Role Tanker Transport aircraft to support evacuation efforts in Afghanistan

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said more flights would be organised

“This is not a simple process,” Scott Morrison said.

“This was the first of what will be many flights, subject to clearance and weather.”

He confirmed the flight included Australian citizens, Afghan nationals with visas and one foreign official working in an international agency.

“The transfers are done to our base in the Emirates, where capacity has already been established with medical support available, to provide that medical support and to process their further onward transfer to Australia,” he said.

Flight tracking websites showed the RAAF Hercules flying in and out of Afghanistan this morning.

Australia has committed 250 troops and multiple military aircraft to the region with the intention to rescue around 600 people from Kabul. 

As announced earlier, the airport in Kabul has been secured by US troops.

The Australian Prime Minister said this was a ‘crucial’ element.

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Five former Trump staffers speak with House

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January 6 capital riots investigation continues

As the investigation into the January 6 capitol riots continues, new reports allege that at least five former Trump staffers have come forward to speak voluntarily with the House committee.

This comes as the committee’s lawyers continue to reach out to further Trump aides as to whether they would be interested in speaking at the hearing without the threat of SUPENA.

The committee has been tasked with investigating the actions of former President Donald Trump prior to the riots occurring.

This most recent outreach is not likely to signify that the committee believes the staffers had any involvement in sparking the riots… but rather they may have more context as to what was happening inside the White House that day.

It all comes as Trump continues his legal battle against the investigation… suing both the committee and the National Archives in an attempt to withhold documents.

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Queen Elizabeth not attending COP26 climate event

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Buckingham Palace says the Queen is accepting doctor’s advice to rest

Following a health scare just last week… Queen Elizabeth will not be attending the upcoming COP-26 climate event in Glasgow.

This comes as doctors advise the royal to rest and comes just hours after she carried out her first official engagements since being admitted to hospital.

On Tuesday, Elizabeth met virtually with the ambassador of Korea and Switzerland.

Last week, Buckingham Palace revealed the monarch spent a night in hospital for “preliminary investigations”… but returned home in “good spirits”.

Meanwhile, the Queen was due to attend an evening reception in Glasgow on Monday but will deliver a video message instead.

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Jeff Bezos unveils plans for commercial space station

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Jeff Bezos’ space tourism company, Blue Origin, has announced plans to launch a space station in Earth’s orbit.

The station will be named “Orbital Reef,” and is projected to be built and operational by the end of the decade.

The company says the station will serve as a “mixed-use business park” in space and will host up to 10 people.

Promotional material released by the company revealed the 32-thousand square foot station will provide customers with an ideal location for “filmmaking in microgravity”, or “conducting cutting-edge research”.

It’s also speculated that the space station will include a “space hotel”.

The company will partner with Sierra Space and Boeing to build the outpost.

The announcement comes amid NASA efforts to find a proposal that would replace the International Space Station (ISS), which is now more than 20 years old and in desperate need of repair.

This will include $400m in private contracts to space companies to help the agency replace the ageing outpost.

There is likely to be stiff competition for the funding, and Blue Origin is the latest firm to unveil their space station concept, joining space firms Nanoracks, Voyager Space and Lockheed Martin, who have teamed up to launch a station into low orbit by 2027.

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