Welsh morning headlines: News, Ukraine, sport, weather and roads updates as weather warning issued


We have put together a round-up of all the latest news, weather and travel information for Wednesday, March 2, that will get you caught up and ready for the day.

Boris Johnson will update MPs today on his talks with allies in eastern Europe as the UK piled more pressure on Russia over its Ukraine invasion.

It comes as US President Joe Biden used his first State of the Union address to announce US airspace was closed to Russian flights, adding his administration would be joining the UK and other allies in pursuing the Russian oligarchs and “corrupt leaders who built billions of dollars off (Vladimir Putin’s) violent regime”.

Following his trip to Poland and Estonia, Mr Johnson will address the House of Commons during Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, during which he is likely be pressed on further action the Government could take on sanctioning Russian oligarchs and supporting Ukrainian refugees.

As the Prime Minister returns from meeting British troops on Nato’s border with Russia, the Foreign Office is expected to follow suit by announcing further financial sanctions on Moscow banks and also ban all Russia-linked ships from docking at UK ports.

Meanwhile, fghting has broken out in Ukrainian’s second city, Kharkiv, after Russian airborne troops parachuted in to attack military targets.

The development comes after days of shelling, including a cluster bomb attack on the city on Monday which killed at least 11 people and wounded scores more. You can follow developments throughout the day here.

Wales news headlines

Mother of murdered boy backs police campaign

A mother has recounted the horrifying moment she was told her son had been stabbed to death.

Emma Baker has spoken for the first time about the murder of her son Harry, who was ambushed and stabbed to death by a murderous gang on August 28, 2019.

Harry was murdered at Barry Docks by a gang after a clash between rival drug dealers. He was stabbed nine times to the face, head, neck, stomach and legs.

Emma Baker has said the knife murder of her son Harry sometimes doesn't 'seem real'. She has spoken out as part of a new knife crime campaign
Emma Baker has said the knife murder of her son Harry sometimes doesn’t ‘seem real’. She has spoken out as part of a new knife crime campaign

Seven people were sentenced in March 2021 to a total of 119 years for the brutal and ferocious killing.

Mrs Baker is now working with South Wales Police as part of their latest Violence Prevention Unit collaborative campaign #NotTheOne which aims to educate young people on the consequences of carrying a knife.

The campaign is aimed at 11 to 16-year-olds in south Wales as police say evidence suggests that early intervention and prevention is important to prevent people from carrying a knife in the first place. Read what Harry’s mum had to say here.

Tough new measures to squeeze second home owners

The Welsh Government has announced tough new rules aimed at combating the number of second homes in rural Welsh communities.

The increase in second homes is having a devastating impact on some communities, leaving some areas sparsely populated for much of the year and inflating house prices so young people often have to move away to have a chance of getting on the property ladder.

The new plans include an increase to the maximum level of council tax premiums for second homes, as well as new local tax rules for holiday lets.

The Welsh Government said the changes represent more steps taken to ensure people can find an affordable home in the place they have grown up.

The measures are part of a wider commitment to address the issue of second homes and unaffordable housing facing many communities in Wales, as set out in the Co-operation Agreement between the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru. Read more here.

Today’s forecast

Thick fog is expected to create “difficult” driving conditions and potentially lead to flight delays in south Wales.

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning for thick fog from 5am until 11am across the whole of the South West and the southern coast of Wales, including Cardiff.

“Thick fog, mainly on modest hills and near the south coast, will make for difficult driving conditions this morning,” the Met Office said in an update.

“There is a chance of delays to flights.”

A frontal system slowly moving northwards has begun arriving into south-western parts of the UK and bringing very moist air, the update added.

“As cloud above it thins, and rain eases, this will allow a period of thick low cloud and fog to continue to develop, settle onto hills, and expand northwards with visibilities below 50 m in a few places,” it said.

Visibility will slowly improve once the fog lifts into low cloud later on Wednesday morning.

Temperatures are not expected to exceed 10°C. throughout the day with outbreaks of light rain and drizzle also predicted by the Met Office.

Heading into the evening, patchy light rain and drizzle will continue with a band of more organised rain expected to arrive across west Wales during the second half of the night. Temperatures are not predicted to drop below 5°C..

Here is how the roads and rail are affected at 7am:

  • No major issues to report on Wales main roads

  • Buses run instead of trains on Transport for Wales between Shrewsbury and Newtown, Powys, because of flooding.

National news headlines

Shop prices rise at fastest rate in a decade

Prices in shops rose at their fastest rate in over a decade in February, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) say s.

Shop price inflation jumped from 1.5% in January to 1.8% in February, according to the BRC-NielsenIQ price index.

It marks the highest rate of inflation it has recorded since November 2011.

The sharp rise was partly driven by fresh food price rises and higher prices for other goods such as beauty and furniture products.

Undated file photo of a woman shopping holding a basket

Many people have been struggling with a cost of living crisis as fuel prices and energy bills continue to soar.

The latest official figures provided by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed living costs rising at their highest for 30 years.

Non-food inflation rose to 1.3% in February, rising from 0.9% in January which is its highest rate since September 2011, the BRC said on Wednesday.

The inflation rate for fresh food, which measures how quickly costs for everyday items increase over time, rose to 3.3% – up from 2.9% in January, according to the industry group.

The BRC said this was partly because of poor harvests, both in the UK and overseas.

Apple halts the sale of its products in Russia

Apple has stopped selling iPhones and other popular products in Russia in response to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The company is one of the latest major corporations to boycott the country following the invasion ordered by Russian president Vladimir Putin last week.

Fellow tech giants Google and Twitter have also cut down their business in Russia. As well as halting product sales, Apple says its mobile app store is blocking downloads of RT News and Sputnik News from outside Russia.

It has also stopped live traffic updates on Apple Maps in Ukraine as a safety measure, similar to action Google has already taken. “We will continue to evaluate the situation and are in communication with relevant governments on the actions we are taking,” the company said in its statement.

“We join all those around the world who are calling for peace.” It is not known how much of Apple’s roughly 365 billion dollar (£274 billion) annual revenue comes from Russia.

Sport headlines

Cardiff City hand Steve Morison new contract

Cardiff City have handed Steve Morison a new contract until the end of next season.

The Bluebirds boss had been given the job until the end of this season following the departure of Mick McCarthy and a spell as interim boss.

But results, performances and the style of football has improved markedly since he, Tom Ramasut and Mark Hudson took the reins and, following the 1-0 win over Derby County, the club felt it right to announce that Morison continue his work into next season.

After the Rams win, Morison said of his contract: “It happened really quickly. They offered it to me yesterday. It was something you (media) all knew I wanted. It was a case of getting it all sorted.

Cardiff City manager Steve Morison

“We did that throughout the course of the day. I’ve been acting as if I was going to be here because you can’t sit here and wait. The things I’m putting in place will help the football club long term.

“We need to evolve as a football club, we need to move away from where we’ve been because the game’s changing. We’ve got to move with the change – recruitment and scouting teams know what type of players we want. It would be the same if someone else was here.

“I was asked to help out and do a job. Done that to best of my ability while learning on the job. I’ve made some mistakes, made some really good decisions, had a really god transfer window. There is always a fear they would turn round and say ‘Thanks, but we’re going to do this’ which I was fully prepared for as well.

“You hope the results on the pitch help. I was very hopeful but until you sign that paper it hasn’t happened. I’ve done that now and put it in a drawer somewhere.”

Alun Wyn Jones arrives in Wales camp

Alun Wyn Jones will attend Wales’ Six Nations camp this week.

The Welsh Rugby Union have confirmed that usual skipper Jones will arrive at their Vale Resort HQ ‘to continue his rehabilitation’.

Jones has been out of action since injuring his shoulder in the autumn Test against the All Blacks and has always been long odds to feature in this year’s Six Nations.

The WRU’s brief statement does not suggest that he is close to returning to action and it does sound as though any involvement in team activities would be limited.

Jones, the most-capped player in the history of rugby, has been making use of the WRU’s facilities and their medical staff, alongside that of the Ospreys, throughout his rehabilitation.

That the WRU have felt the need to comment on his presence in camp this week could be significant. But WalesOnline understand he is not yet being deemed an official call-up to the squad.

Prior to the tournament, Wayne Pivac hinted Jones could make an unlikely return at some point, after initially being expected to miss the entire Championship.

“Never say never!” Pivac said.

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