World’s most unusual commutes: share your pictures and stories | World news

A strong coffee and a good book is, for many people, all that’s required to get through the journey to work. But for those who prefer to beat the rush hour by swimming, kitesurfing or paragliding to the office, the daily commute can be a little more demanding and a lot more fun.

Do you avoid traffic jams and packed trains by commuting on horseback or climbing into a canoe? We want to hear from those intrepid readers around the world who opt for more unusual means to get to work – such as Benjamin David, who swims 1.2 miles (2km) down the Isar in Munich everyday.

If your commute is out of the ordinary, we’d like to see what it looks like and hear about your experiences. Show us your pictures and tell us what you enjoy most about your journey and how and why you’ve turned your commute into a daily adventure. We will feature some of the best stories and photos in a gallery and accompanying article.

Share your commuting experiences with us now by clicking on one of the blue “contribute” buttons – or, if you’re out and about, you can also use the Guardian app and search for “GuardianWitness assignments”.

  • GuardianWitness is the home of user-generated content on the Guardian. Contribute your video, pictures and stories, and browse news, reviews and creations submitted by others. Posts will be reviewed prior to publication on GuardianWitness, and the best pieces will feature on the Guardian site.

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Juncker says EU will ‘move on’ from Brexit in state of union speech | World news

Jean-Claude Juncker has declared that the “wind is back in Europe’s sails” in an at times deeply personal State of the Union speech in which he gave his vision for the future of the European Union after the UK makes its “tragic” departure in 2019.

The European commission president said he would always deeply lament the UK’s decision to leave the EU. “This will be a very sad and tragic moment in our history, we will always regret this”, he said before responding to heckling from Nigel Farage, by retorting: “I think you will regret this soon, I might say.”

Calling for a special summit in Romania on the 30 March 2019, the first day of an EU of 27 member states rather than 28, Juncker said he hoped the continent would “wake up” that day to a new more unified bloc.

“We have to respect the will of the British people”, he said. “We are going to make progress. We will keep moving. We will move on because Brexit isn’t everything. It isn’t the future of Europe. It isn’t the be all and end all… On the 30 March 2019, we will be a union of 27 and I suggest we prepare very well for that date.”

He added: “I have lived the European project through my entire life. I have fought for it, I have worked for it. I have been through good times, and I have been through bad times … I have sometimes suffered with Europe and agonised over Europe.

“I have been through thick and thin with the European Union and never have I lost my love for the European Union. As we all know there is no love without disappointment, or very rarely.”

Juncker’s annual address to the European parliament in Strasbourg was notably more upbeat about the future than his speech a year ago, with economic growth outstripping the US and unemployment at a nine-year low. The commission president and former prime minister of Luxembourg, insisted the bloc should seize the moment to make widespread reforms. “As Mark Twain wrote, years from now we will be more disappointed by the things we did not do, than by the ones we did,” he said.

Juncker proposed more help for all EU countries to join the euro, so that it could be truly “the single currency of the European Union”, along with a wide range of institutional changes, including the creation of an EU finance minister and the widening of the Schengen area, in which passport-free travel is allowed.

In a call for the presidencies of the European commission and the European council, the body comprising the member states’ leaders, to be combined and directly elected in the future, Juncker said the EU needed to be more flexible and streamlined. “Europe would be easier to understand if one captain was steering the ship,” he said.

He also put his weight behind calls for the European parliament seats previously held by British MEPs to be elected on a transnational basis.

Juncker added that the council should adopt qualified majority voting, rather than unanimity, on foreign policy issues and drive forward in European defence. “By 2025 we need a fully-fledged European defence union,” he said. “We need it. And Nato wants it.”

He also added the EU would establish a European cybersecurity agency. “Cyber-attacks know no borders and no one is immune,” he said.

Juncker told MEPs he intended to start trade talks with Australia and New Zealand, and promised to legislate to protect strategic interests from foreign purchases through industrial screening.

A joint statement from the French, German and Italian governments following the speech endorsed the move. The German minister for economic affairs, Brigitte Zypries, said: “We must avoid other states benefiting from our opening to advance their own industrial policy interests.”

Juncker added that the EU would respond to the “collapse of the ambitions in the US” on climate change by stepping into the vacuum and ensuring that Europe protected the world. “Let’s catch the wind in our sails”, he told MEPs.

However, he ruled out Turkey’s accession to the EU in the “foreseeable future”, and, in his strongest comments to date on the issue, he condemned the country’s slide into authoritarianism under President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

“Turkey has been moving away from the European Union in leaps and bounds,” Juncker told MEPs. “Journalists belong in editorial offices amid a heated debate, and not in prison. I appeal today to the powers that be in Turkey: let our journalists go, and not just our journalists.”

Juncker was also scathing about Poland’s recent judicial reforms, which have been criticised as an attack on the judiciary, although he did not mention the country by name. Brussels has threatened to trigger a process under which Poland could lose its voting rights in the council of ministers unless it rethinks a series of recent legislative reforms.

Juncker said: “The rule of law means that law and justice are upheld by an independent judiciary. Accepting and respecting a final judgment is what it means to be part of a union based on the rule of law.”

The EU is also to step up its deportation of illegal immigrants, improve its “pathways” for legal migration and tackle the “inhumane conditions” in Libyan reception camps, which, according to some reports, are reminiscent of second world war concentration camps.

Farage, the former Ukip leader, told the Strasbourg chamber that Juncker’s speech was “worrying”. “More Europe in every single direction and all of it to be done without the consent of the people,” Farage said. “All I can say, is thank God we are leaving. You have learned nothing from Brexit. If you had given [David] Cameron concessions, particularly on immigration, the Brexit vote, I must admit, would never, never have happened.”

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Seven-year-old Australian-British boy missing after Barcelona attack | World news

An urgent search is under way for a child with dual British nationality who is believed to be among the missing after the terror attacks in Spain, the UK prime minister has said.

Theresa May spoke after a British man living in Australia appealed for information about his seven-year-old grandson, Julian Alessandro Cadman, who became separated from his mother, Jom, during the chaos.

“Julian is seven years old and was out with Jom when they were separated, due to the recent terrorist activity. Please share if you have family or friends in Barcelona,” said Tony Cadman, whose Facebook profile says he lives in Australia and is originally from Dorset.

May told Sky News that Britain was “urgently looking into reports of a child believed missing, who is a British dual national”. She did not name him.

It has been reported that the child and his mother previously lived in Kent, and Tony Cadman posted a picture of Julian wearing a uniform from a British nursery school.

May and the Foreign Office have confirmed that British nationals are among those injured, though they have not said how many.

Tony Cadman said Jom, his daughter-in-law, had been injured in the attack in Las Ramblas on Thursday, which left 13 people dead. He said she was in a serious but stable condition in hospital.

Julian’s father, Andrew Cadman, said he had spoken to his son only hours before he went missing. Cadman was travelling from Sydney to Barcelona on Friday to search for Julian.

The Australian foreign affairs minister, Julie Bishop, has said one Australian is missing and four others have been injured in the attack.

“We are concerned, but we are working closely with authorities to determine the whereabouts of the one Australian unaccounted for,” Bishop told reporters in Melbourne on Friday.

Two New South Wales women are in hospital. One of those women, Sydney bank worker Suria Intan, is being treated at the Hospital Clinic in Barcelona. Intan works for the Commonwealth Bank and is a member of the Hillsong church.

She was due to return home this weekend after a three-week holiday with three girlfriends, Fairfax reported.

Two Victorian men – both of whom were hit by the attacker’s van – have been discharged after receiving treatment.



How the Spanish terror attacks unfolded

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms these brutal and cowardly attacks, and in the case of Las Ramblas, clearly designed to harm and affect tourists who were visiting the area,” Bishop said.

“The Australian government remains committed to ensuring that Australians are as safe as they can be, either overseas or here in Australia.”

Australia’s consular hotline has received more than 380 calls, with government advice updated to urge travellers to exercise caution and heed the directions of local authorities.

There are 2,000 Australians registered with the embassy as being in Spain, and roughly 20,000 Australians in Spain at any one time.

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Spain attacks: Italian man died in front of wife and children in Las Ramblas | World news

An Italian man was holding the hand of his five-year-old son moments before he was killed in the terror attack in Las Ramblas, it has emerged.

Bruno Gulotta, 35, was named on Friday as one of 13 people who died when a van ploughed into crowds on the boulevard in Barcelona. Another person injured in a separate attack in the Catalan seaside town of Cambrils was also confirmed dead on Friday morning.

Gulotta died on the street in front of his five-year-old son Alessandro and wife Martina, Italian media reported.

Martina, who was carrying their one-year-old daughter, Aria, in a sling-style baby carrier, told friends that she had pulled Alessandro to safety at the last moment.

The family, from Legnano, near Milan, were on holiday in the Catalan city.

Gulotta worked in sales and marketing for computer company Tom’s Hardware. The company said his violent death had left his wife facing “trials no-one should have to bear”.

“We put ourselves in the shoes of little Alessandro, who is about to start elementary school knowing his and his family’s life will never be the same again. And we think of baby Aria … who will never know her dad,” his colleagues said in a statement.

An emergency services spokesman said 130 people were injured in the two attacks, 17 of whom are in a critical condition with another 30 in a serious condition.

The nationalities of the dead and injured testify to Barcelona’s popularity as a global tourist destination. The came from at least 34 different countries, including Australia, Britain, Belgium, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Honduras, Morocco, Pakistan and the United States, according to Catalan authorities.

Another Italian, 25-year-old Luca Russo, died in Las Ramblas. Russo, from Marostica, a town in the northern Veneto region, graduated last year in engineering and had just started his first job.

He was on holiday with his girlfriend, Marta Scomazzon, who is among three injured Italians, having suffered fractures in the attack.

Scomazzon, whose parents have travelled to Barcelona to be with her, told the Italian news agency Ansa: “We were walking together and then the van hit us.

“I fell and realised that Luca wasn’t there any more, I didn’t see him again, his body was swept away.”

Russo’s sister Chiara posted images on Facebook of her smiling brother, alongside those of his body lying on the ground in Barcelona.

“Help to bring him home,” I beg you, she wrote.

“Italy will remember Bruno Gulotta and Luca Russo and expresses its solidarity with their families,” the prime minister, Paolo Gentiloni, said in a tweet. “Freedom will triumph over barbarism and terrorism.”

Elke Vanbockrijck from Belgium



Elke Vanbockrijck, from Belgium, was on holiday in Barcelona with her husband and sons. Photograph: Facebook

Also among the dead was Elke Vanbockrijck, 44, a Belgian on holiday with her husband and two sons.

Vanbockrijck regularly ferried her sons, 10 and 14, to football practice at KFC Heur Tongeren. A statement from the club said: “She was often at the club, and was committed to our club. We will always remember her as a happy woman, a caring mother and loving wife. Elke will be missed.”

The first named Spanish victim was Francisco López Rodríguez, 60, originally from Granada. He had been walking along La Rambla with his wife, who is believed to be seriously injured. Three Spanish citizens have been killed, according to El País.

The youngest victim of the attacks was thought to be a three-year-old girl, who died shortly after being taken to hospital. A six-year-old girl was taken to hospital with a cerebral haemorrhage, an official at Vall d’Hebron University hospital told the New York Times. Her nationality was not known.

Franciso López Rodríguez

Franciso López Rodríguez. Photograph: Twitter

Others are searching frantically for loved ones. Seven-year-old Julian Alessandro Cadman, a British-Australian dual national, is missing after he became separated from his mother, Jom, during the chaos. Tony Cadman said Jom, his daughter-in-law, was in a serious but stable condition in hospital.

The family is appealing for information on Facebook. “Missing in Barcelona,” reads a Facebook message posted by Tony Cadman, asking users to share a picture of Julian, who is pictured smiling and wearing a green jumper with the name of his nursery.

Julian Cadman.



Julian Cadman. Photograph: Family

Heidi Nunes, from California, has not seen her husband since Thursday afternoon when they became separated in Las Ramblas. Jared Tucker, 42, from Walnut Creek, California, left his wife for a moment, shortly before the attack started. The couple, on a grand tour of Europe to celebrate their first wedding anniversary, had been enjoying drinks on a pavement cafe.

“Next thing I know there’s screaming, yelling,” Nunes, 40, told NBC News. “I got pushed inside the souvenir kiosk and stayed there hiding while everybody kept running by screaming.”

The US state department said at least one American had been killed and one injured. It identified neither.

A Portuguese woman, aged 73 or 74, was also killed, the country’s main news agency reported.

France has confirmed that 26 of its citizens were injured, with 11 in a serious condition. Three Dutch nationals were also injured.

The UK Foreign Office said it was assisting a “small number” of injured Britons,and a Greek diplomat reported three of its nationals had been wounded: a woman and her two children. China said two people from Taiwan were being treated for severe injuries, and confirmed that a person from Hong Kong had minor injuries.

Australia’s foreign minister, Julie Bishop, said four Australians had been hurt – two women in a serious but stable condition, and two men who were “directly affected” and had gone back to their hotel to seek medical attention.

Throughout the night on Thursday there were urgent appeals on social media for English, Italian and French translators to go to hospitals and clinics to help medical staff attending to dozens of non-Spanish speaking victims.

A man originally from the Philippines and resident in Ireland, who was on holiday with his wife and two children, was hit on his side but his injuries were not life-threatening, Emmanuel Fernandez, the consul general of the Philippines embassy in Madrid, told the Irish broadcaster RTÉ.



How the Spanish terror attacks unfolded

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Australia to announce plan to protect crowded places from terrorism | World news

Malcolm Turnbull has condemned the terrorist attack in Barcelona, saying Australia stands in “absolute, resolute solidarity” with the people of Spain in their fight against Islamist terrorism.

He said “our love, our prayers” were with the victims and their families, and Australian consular officials were on their way to Barcelona from Madrid.

He said he would “shortly” release a new plan detailing how authorities planned to protect crowded places in Australia, such as sporting arenas and shopping centres, to prevent similar deadly vehicle attacks.

His office said the plan would not be released on Friday, and a spokesman declined to say when it would be made available.

“We have seen how deadly vehicle attacks can be,” Turnbull said on Friday, in a joint news conference with Tony Sheehan, the commonwealth counter-terrorism coordinator, and Duncan Lewis, the director general of security.

“We’ve seen it recently in London, of course, in the Borough Market attack and of course tragically in Australia, in the attack on the Bourke Street Mall.

“Following the truck attack in Nice last year … I asked [the former] commonwealth counter-terrorism coordinator, Greg Moriarty, to work on protecting crowded places in Australia.

“That work has been completed now, and it will be released shortly,” he said.

Turnbull said Australia’s intelligence agencies worked closely with Spanish authorities in the fight against Islamist terrorism, and Spain was a partner in the anti-Daesh coalition in the Middle East.

He said 16 people had been killed in the attack in Barcelona, and warned that the death toll could rise.

“We understand three Australians have been injured – one seriously,” Turnbull said.

“Our consular officials are on their way to Barcelona from Madrid. We have an honorary consul in Barcelona.”

He used the opportunity to tell Australians their intelligence agencies worked “tirelessly” to keep them safe, and said there was “no place for set-and-forget on national security”.

Turnbull said his new plan was a “comprehensive analysis” that would provide advice and tools for the operators of large venues to make their venues safer for the public.

“It is about protecting crowded places, which is a very complex issue,” he said.

“What we seek to ensure is that when a new venue is being built, a new centre or shopping centre or football stadium, or some new public space is being constructed, resilience is built into that.”

Asked if the report would recommend new construction around existing venues, he said people would have to wait and see.

“We’ll have more to say when it is released, but it is obviously the responsibility of everyone to pay attention to the vulnerability of the crowded places that they’re therefore responsible, and to bear that in mind,” he said.

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Countries with coral reefs must do more on climate change – Unesco | Environment

Countries with responsibility over world heritage-listed coral reefs should adopt ambitious climate change targets, aiming to cut greenhouse gas emissions to levels that would keep global temperature increases to just 1.5C, the UN agency responsible for overseeing world heritage sites has said.

At a meeting of Unesco’s world heritage committee in Kraków, Poland, a decision was adopted that clarified and strengthened the responsibility of countries that have custodianship over world-heritage listed coral reefs.

Until now, most countries have interpreted their responsibility over such reefs as implying they need to protect them from local threats such as water pollution and overfishing.

But between 2014 and 2017, reefs in every major reef region bleached, with much of the coral dying, in the worst global bleaching event in recorded history. Over those three years, 21 of the 29 listed sites suffered severe or repeated heat stress.

Last month Unesco published the first global assessment of climate change’s impacts on world heritage-listed reefs and it concluded that local efforts were “no longer sufficient” – concluding the only hope was to keep global temperature increases below 1.5C.

The new decision builds on that assessment, clarifying the responsibility of countries with custodianship over world-heritage listed coral reefs.

The decision adopted by the world heritage committee said it “reiterates the importance of state parties undertaking the most ambitious implementation of the Paris agreement”, which it noted meant pursuing efforts to limit global average temperature increase to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.

It went on that it “strongly invites all state parties … to undertake actions to address climate change under the Paris agreement that are fully consistent with their obligations within the world heritage convention to protect the [outstanding universal values] of all world heritage properties”.

The decision appeared to implement the earlier finding that local efforts were insufficient to protect reefs, and indicated the committee considered that countries were obliged under the world heritage convention to undertake strong action on climate change.

The decision put most countries’ emissions targets in stark contrast with what was needed to protect their reefs. Combined, all countries’ commitments made so far are projected to allow warming or as much as 2.7C by 2100.

But some countries with coral reefs are not contributing their fair share to even that level of ambition.

Australia, which has responsibility over the world’s largest coral reef system – the Great Barrier Reef – has climate change targets consistent with between 3C and 4C of warming by 2100, according to Climate Action Tracker.

Moreover, Australia doesn’t have any policies in place that will help it achieve those targets, with official government projections showing emissions are not expected to be cut at all, and instead will rise for at least decades to come.

The first indication that Unesco would consider action on climate change an obligation of custodians of world-heritage listed coral reefs came in June when it assessed Australia’s progress in protecting the Great Barrier Reef, following back-to-back mass bleaching in 2016 and 2017 that killed as much as half its coral.

Despite acknowledging Australia’s progress in addressing water quality on the reef, and deciding not to put the reef on its “in-danger” list, Unesco noted that climate change was the most serious threat to it, and said there was the need to consider how bleaching was affecting the effectiveness of the country’s plan to protect it.

“Last week the Australian government bragged that the Great Barrier Reef was not put on the in-danger list at this meeting,” said Imogen Zethoven from the Australian Marine Conservation Society, who was at the world heritage committee meeting in Poland.

“However, this week the Australian government should be worried. It knows very well that it is still on probation with the world heritage committee. This decision means Australia needs to rapidly reduce carbon pollution and reject new coalmines – otherwise our reef is at great risk of being placed on the world heritage in-danger list in 2020.

“The Australian government must now, more than ever, rule out any new coalmines and urgently develop a climate policy that will protect our global icon. It must do its fair share of the global effort to reduce pollution.

“If it doesn’t, the world heritage committee should hold Australia to account for failing to tackle the single greatest threat to our Great Barrier Reef – and for putting all other world heritage coral reefs at risk.”

An Earthjustice attorney, Noni Austin, who also attended the world heritage committee meeting, said: “The world heritage committee’s decision has confirmed what scientists have been saying for years: urgent and rapid action to reduce global warming and implement the Paris agreement is essential for the survival of coral reefs into the future.”

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