Welcome to your early-morning news briefing from The Telegraph – a round-up of the top stories we are covering on Thursday. To receive twice-daily briefings by email, sign up to our Front Page newsletter for free.
1. Holidays to Europe in doubt after Angela Merkel’s ‘quarantine the British’ demand

Angela Merkel on Wednesday night threatened to scupper hopes of foreign holidays in Europe this summer by demanding that EU countries introduce mandatory quarantine for travelling Britons.

The German chancellor urged countries to introduce the quarantine for vaccinated Britons just as the UK Government is finally preparing to relax its rules for returning holidaymakers. Read the full story.

2. Exclusive: Harry and Meghan rejected Earl of Dumbarton title for Archie for containing word ‘dumb’

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex rejected the title Earl of Dumbarton for their son Archie because it contained the word "dumb", it has emerged.

Multiple sources have told The Telegraph that both Harry and Meghan declined to use the title of Scottish nobility because they feared Archie might be bullied or attract unfortunate nicknames. Read the full story.

3. Britney Spears compares herself to sex trafficking victim and says her father won’t let her off birth control

Britney Spears on Wednesday night said she was "not here to be a slave" and claimed that she was forcibly kept on contraception as part of a controversial conservatorship arrangement.

Breaking her silence before a US judge, the 39-year-old pop star denounced her father Jamie Spears’ legal control of her life and finances as "abusive" and likened it to "sex trafficking". Read the full story.

4. Antivirus software pioneer John McAfee ‘found dead’ in Spanish prison cell

John McAfee, the founder of antivirus software McAfee, reportedly died by suicide in his prison cell in Barcelona on Wednesday, after a Spanish court approved his extradition to the US on tax evasion charges.

The 75-year-old British-American eccentric tech entrepreneur was arrested at Barcelona Airport in October last year for allegedly failing to pay taxes on years of income. Read the full story.

5. Queen calls Matt Hancock ‘poor man’ as she restarts in-person audiences with Boris Johnson

The confidential nature of the Queen’s weekly audiences with her serving prime minister has always been highly prized.

But a brief clip of Her Majesty receiving Boris Johnson on Wednesday offered a rare insight into the historic meetings, as she revealed Matt Hancock had told her: “Things are getting better.” Read the full story.

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