Good morning. Politics are at play with the future of the Great Barrier Reef and the Australian-New Zealand travel bubble on ice as the Bondi Covid cluster grows. And if you want to hear more about Barnaby Joyce’s return to the Nationals’ top job, we’ve also got that covered for you in today’s morning mail.

A senior Unesco official has rejected the Australian government’s claims it bowed to political pressure when deciding to recommend the Great Barrier Reef be placed on the world heritage “in danger” list. Fanny Douvere also rejected a suggestion that the UN body had told the government a week ago it would not be recommending the listing. The Australian government says it has been blindsided by the “in danger” recommendation and will fight the decision. But Australian Marine Conservation Society environmental consultant Imogen Zethoven writes: “Unesco has absolutely made the right decision. The reef is in danger. It is time for the Australian government to take ambitious climate action for the reef.” It’s not the first time the reef has faced the threat of an “in danger” listing. But what does it mean and why is this time different? Here’s an explainer and a timeline of the decades of damage and Australia’s fight to rectify the issues.

New Zealand has paused quarantine-free travel with New South Wales after the state recorded 10 new locally acquired Covid cases. NSW Health said a confirmed case had flown from Sydney to Wellington on Friday 18 June and from Wellington to Sydney on Monday morning. There are now 21 cases linked to the Bondi cluster. Two cases are causing particular concern among authorities. One is a a school student and the other is a woman who works at Bondi Junction Westfield who was likely exposed through “fleeting” contact.

China has ramped up its use of secret detention without trial, creating one of the most far-ranging systems of forced disappearance in the world, human rights activists warn. Tens of thousands of people have been subjected to “residential surveillance at a designated location”, which allows security forces to hold people for months without charges or trial and have been described as “state-sanctioned kidnappings”. Meanwhile, the Australian public’s trust in the Chinese government has collapsed after a year of trade sanctions while the Morrison government has received a mediocre score for its handling of the worsening relationship. The Lowy Institute’s annual poll shows that, for the first time, more Australians view China as a security threat than an economic partner.


Female members of the government were angered by one MP who suggested working women were ‘outsourcing parenting’.
Female members of the government were angered by one MP who suggested working women were ‘outsourcing parenting’. Photograph: Dave Hunt/AAP

Labor has condemned the Coalition for holding “completely archaic” views on childcare after a fierce debate erupted among government MPs about a $1.7bn childcare package. One MP suggested working women were “outsourcing parenting”. The comment “fired up” Liberal MP Hollie Hughes, who shot back: “Thank you, boys, for telling us how to best raise our children.”

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The ​Daily Mail has been ordered by the press watchdog to issue a clarification, after it inaccurately claimed that proposed guidelines on best practice in reporting road traffic collisions sought to make abuse of cyclists a hate crime. The press regulator said there was “no suggestion” of the guidelines’ authors calling for such behaviour to be criminalised.

The newspaper published an article on 30 September 2020 regarding the draft Road Collision Reporting Guidelines, then out for consultation, with the headline, ‘You can’t say Lycra Louts – Campaigners call for abuse of cyclists to be made a hate crime’.  

> Media guidelines launched for reporting road collisions

The article appeared to have been removed from the Daily Mail website shortly after its publication last year, although a version of it is still hosted on MSN.

Now, the Independent Press Standard Organisation (IPSO) has ruled that the article was inaccurate and breached Clause 1(i) of the Editors’ Code of Practice.

According to the clause, “The press must take care not to publish inaccurate, misleading or distorted information or images, including headlines not supported by the text.”

The complaint was brought by contributor Laura Laker, who also writes on active travel for outlets including the Guardian, and who helped draw up the guidelines, published by the University of Westminster’s Active Travel Academy.

In its ruling, Laker v Daily Mail, IPSO said: “This implication was inaccurate – while the guidelines called on publishers to avoid using language which may ‘incite violence or hatred towards road users’, there was no suggestion within the document that the authors were calling for such abuse to be treated as criminal behaviour.

“The Committee was concerned that the publication had inaccurately reported information featured clearly within an a publicly accessible proposal that was, at the time of publication, out for consultation. This inaccuracy had featured prominently in the article and as such represented a clear failure by the newspaper not to publish misleading and inaccurate information in breach of Clause 1(i).”

The Daily Mail has acknowledged the inaccuracy and will publish a clarification in the print edition as well as on its website.

The guidelines themselves are currently being finalised and will be formally launched during next month’s Global Road Safety Week.