Electricity trading paused, Joe Biden to meet Saudi prince and Socceroos welcomed home


Good morning. It’s Thursday 16 June 2022, and here’s a round up of the latest news.Australia’s energy regulator suspends trading on the electricity marketAustralia’s energy regulator says it’s been forced to suspend trading in electricity until further notice to maintain reliable supplies.The Australian Energy Market Operator says some power generators have been withdrawing their supplies because of a price cap which has made it difficult to operate what’s known as the spot market for wholesale electricity.It’s the first time the market has been suspended nationally and will be reviewed on a daily basis.AEMO Chief Executive Daniel Westerman says conditions remain tight, especially in New South Wales and he’s urging consumers in that state to conserve energy.”We’ve faced high demand profiles due to the cold weather. Input costs have increased due to international factors,” Mr Westerman said. READ MORE”We’ve had a few transmission line outages etcetera which has resulted in a price cap. “Since that price cap was implemented we’ve seen a number of generators withdraw their availability from the market which has led to it being impossible for us to operate.”Opposition Leader Peter Dutton says the new government is to blame for the current problems.”This is a problem that Mr Bowen (Energy Minister Chris Bowen) has created, Mr Dutton said.”And Mr Bowen went to the election saying that he would reduce electricity prices and at the moment we’re seeing the complete opposite and we’re seeing  great uncertainty around the supply of electricity.”Joe Biden criticised for supporting human rights abuse by planning to meet with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin SalmanThe United States government has been accused of abandoning its commitment to support human rights.President Joe Biden is meeting the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman, during a trip to the Middle East next month.That’s seen by some as breaking a campaign promise to make Saudi Arabia a pariah after the killing of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi agents in Turkey in 2018 caused outrage around the world.READ MOREA street outside the Saudi embassy in Washington has been renamed Jamal Khashoggi Way. At its unveiling, Nobel prize winner Tawakkol Karman says Mr Biden is acting shamefully.Abdulla Alaoudh, of the organisation Dawn Democracy for the Arab World Now, says Mr Khashoggi’s legacy will continue, no matter what. “Our message today is that we will not move on,” Mr Alaoudh said.”Jamal’s legacy will live on, no matter the normalisation efforts. And this event today is just one way we will fight to honour Jamal’s legacy.”Richard Marles meets with Japanese counterpartDefence Minister Richard Marles has held talks with his Japanese counterpart in Tokyo. Mr Marles and Nobuo Kishi pledged to step up defence cooperation and military exercises in the region.Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Penny Wong is to travel to Solomon Islands on Friday to meet its Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare.It’s expected the Solomon Islands security pact with China will top the agenda. It’s Minister Wong’s third trip to the Pacific since her swearing in.Socceroos arrive home to hero’s welcome in SydneySeveral Socceroos players and staff have arrived home to a hero’s welcome at Sydney Airport.Amongst them were captain Mat Ryan, key penalty taker Awer Mabil and goalkeeping coach John Crawley.They have been greeted by fans waving flags, chanting their names and even mascots in Kangaroo suits celebrating their World Cup qualification.Australia has now qualified for five consecutive World Cups.They play against France, Denmark, and Tunisia in Group D when they return to Qatar for the tournament in November.