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5 things you need to know this morning: March 4, 2021

Start your day off right with five things you need to know this morning.

Five things you need to know

1. Thai navy rescues 4 cats from sea

The Thai navy has rescued four cats that were abandoned on a burning ship in the Andaman Sea. The heroic deed was caught on camera, with images released of a sailor swimming with a cat on his back clinging for life. All the kitties are said to be safe and healthy.

2. Buckingham Palace investigating allegations Meghan Markle bullied staff

The tedious soap opera that is the Harry and Meghan Show has shifted into a new gear. Multimillionaire aristocrat and former actress Meghan Markle (AKA the Duchess of Sussex) is now claiming to be the victim of "falsehoods" propagated by the British Royal Family. It comes as Buckingham Palace confirmed it is investigating allegations that the Duchess bullied staff while she was living in one of the family's palaces in London.

3. Biden brands Texas and Mississippi's lifting of mask requirement 'Neanderthal thinking'

President Joe Biden, who ran on the basis that he would be a dignified and conciliatory leader, has said Texas and Mississippi's decision to lift mask requirements is "Neanderthal thinking." He said the move – which comes as many states across the US pledge to lift COVID-19 restrictions – is "a big mistake."

4. SpaceX successfully lands Starship (before it blows up)

A SpaceX Starship prototype has blown up during a test. The ship successfully landed, but a fire then developed at its base and several minutes later the craft exploded. Observers, however, said the test represents an overall success.

5. Indigenous groups sue French supermarket over Amazon deforestation

French supermarket chain Casino is being sued by groups in Brazil and Colombia over claims it sells beef linked to deforestation of the Amazon. Campaigners have long attempted to draw attention to the cutting down of millions of trees in the rainforest to make way for pasture land used to rear cattle. The 11 groups of indigenous people are suing the supermarket for $4.7 million in damages.

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