Liberal minister says welfare creates family breakdown and childlessness

NSW minister Dominic Perrottet tells Centre for Independent Studies there’s no incentive to have children if ‘the state will take care of you in your old age’

The New South Wales finance minister has blamed the welfare system for declining birth rates and family breakdown, questioning why anyone would have children “when the state will take care of you in your old age”.

In a speech to the Centre for Independent Studies (CIS), Dominic Perrottet quoted the US politician Daniel Moynihan’s view that “marriage was penalised and single parenthood subsidised” by the welfare system.

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France suspends two of its soldiers in Burkina Faso over child sex abuse

Allegations include abuse of five-year-old girl, police say, and follow alleged sex abuse scandal involving French troops in Central African Republic

France has suspended two soldiers over allegations of child sex abuse, including of a five-year-old girl, in the west African country of Burkina Faso, the defence ministry said on Tuesday.

“Two French soldiers on mission in Burkina Faso were suspected … of engaging in acts of a sexual nature with two children,” France’s defence ministry said in a statement.

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Julie Bishop plays down significance of China’s 60% carbon reduction pledge

Australia’s foreign minister says Beijing’s position known ‘for some time’ as world’s largest emitter vows to cut carbon emissions by 60-65% from 2005 levels

Australia’s foreign minister, Julie Bishop, has played down the significance of China unveiling its post-2020 emissions reduction target, saying Beijing’s position has been known “for some time”.

The world’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide has pledged to cut its greenhouse gas emissions per unit of gross domestic product by 60-65% from 2005 levels, and increase the share of non-fossil fuels as part of its primary energy consumption to about 20% by 2030.

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Hillary Clinton emails to be released by State Department – live updates

  • Cache of former secretary of state’s emails set for release at 9pm ET
  • Fifty-five thousand pages came from Clinton’s private server
  • Republicans aim to scour emails for hints of Benghazi response
  • Jeb Bush releases 33 years’ worth of tax returns

8.54pm ET

In what is surely, undoubtedly a coincidence, Clinton’s Republican rival Jeb bush has released 33 years of tax returns, revealing $20m in income in the past three years.

You can check out the returns over at Bush’s website, or save yourself a few minutes of scrolling through PDFs and campaign fluff and read a report of what’s in the returns by my colleague Tom McCarthy.

Bush’s $ skyrocketed after governorship adj for inflation by @titonka story by @JessicaTaylor

If you have questions about my tax returns, email me directly –

8.43pm ET

What might lie within the 3,000-some emails about to be released? No one quite knows, although Republicans will be searching for any hint of activity related to the 2012 Benghazi attacks or any whiff of wrongdoing with regard to the Clinton Foundation.

Investigations into the Benghazi attacks, which killed four people in two assaults in the Libyan city, have dragged on for years and brought Clinton before Congress to answer questions. Republicans have sought to use the Obama administration’s handling of the crisis to undermine the president and Clinton’s credibility, despite conclusions by the Republican-led House intelligence committee, which cleared officials of any misdeeds.

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Leap second: all the latest developments and reaction – live!

You just had one of the longest hours of your life. At midnight GMT, clocks added an extra second to allow atomic clocks to stay in sync with the Earth’s rotation. Will the internet fall apart? Follow all the latest developments on our live blog

10.41am AEST

Was it as good for you as it was for us? The longest day of the year is flying by here at the Guardian’s Sydney HQ. Here’s how the leap second went down, in real time:

10.31am AEST

The chaos we all feared is upon us:

Twitter is having problem estimating how long ago tweets were sent. Seeing tweets from a minute ago say they were sent a day ago #leapsecond

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