Five things you need to know today

Italy earthquake, plans to scrap USC, Farage supports Trump and deaths on UK beach

Police officers on Camber Sands near Rye, East Sussex after five men died after being pulled from the sea on the hottest day of the year. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Police officers on Camber Sands near Rye, East Sussex after five men died after being pulled from the sea on the hottest day of the year. Photograph: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

 

1. Italy earthquake: Death toll rises to 247 as town of Amatrice devastated

Our Rome Correspondent Paddy Agnew reports from the scene of Amatrice, a small, rural and medieval town which has been destroyed by Wednesday’s earthquake.

“There is so much rubble it is as though you have arrived on the morning after a second World War bombing. Mechanical diggers, sniffer dogs and lots of workers all looking for human needles in an ugly cement haystack.”

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2. Property tax could be increased by 600% if USC scrapped

The Government has been advised it may have to increase property tax by 600 per cent or raise the price of petrol, diesel and alcohol if it scraps the Universal Social Charge.

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3. Nigel Farage: ‘I wouldn’t vote for Hillary Clinton if you paid me’

UK politician Nigel Farage urged Donald Trump’s supporters to “get your walking boots on” and campaign for the Republican presidential nominee if they wanted change in the US.

Mr Farage’s appearance was aimed at boosting Mr Trump’s flagging poll numbers and presenting him as a candidate who, like the Brexit vote, could confound the critics and come from behind to win.

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4. Five men dead and sixth missing on Camber Sands beach in UK

Five men have died and a sixth person is thought to be missing after they got into difficulties in the water at Camber Sands near Rye, East Sussex on Wednesday.

The RNLI and Coastguard were combing the sea and shoreline for a sixth person thought to have been spotted in the sea.

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5. OCI says there is no curb on co-operating with Olympic tickets inquiry

The Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) has said it has legal advice that there is no impediment to it co-operating fully with the Government’s non-statutory inquiry into allegations of ticket touting at the Olympics.

The organisation’s articles of association say members have to treat all information relating to other members and the executive committee as “strictly confidential and shall not communicate such information or any part thereof to any other person, authority or organisation, whatsoever”.

Speaking on RTÉ Radio yesterday, leader of the Labour Party Brendan Howlin said the OCI was “debarred” by law from co-operating with any inquiry unless it was statutory based.

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