The News Matrix: Friday 09 December 2011



British soldier succumbs to injuries

A British soldier who was hurt in an explosion on Tuesday in Afghanistan has died from his injuries, the Ministry of Defence has confirmed. The soldier, from 35 Engineer Regiment, Royal Engineers, died yesterday at Queen Elizabeth NHS Hospital, in Birmingham.

Putin fires back at Clinton in vote spat

Russia's Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin, and the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, traded barbs yesterday after Mrs Clinton said earlier this week that the recent Russian elections were neither free nor fair. Mr Putin said the comments "gave a signal" to the opposition. MORE

Engineers unearth witchcraft hotspot

Engineers have unearthed what could be one of the most infamous sites in England's history of witches and warlocks. The find near Lower Black Moss reservoir in Barley, Lancashire, is close to Pendle Hill – the UK's premier witching hotspot.

Greenhouse gas cuts deal looks unlikely

A deal to cut greenhouse gas emissions looked increasingly unlikely last night as the UN Climate Change Conference in Durban nears its close. China, the US and India are holding out on the deal, backed by a majority of the 194 nations with delegates in South Africa. MORE

Grenades found in luggage at airport

Authorities at Newark Liberty airport in New Jersey discovered five disarmed grenades in the luggage of a woman seeking to board a flight to Belgium, the Transportation Security Administration said on Monday. The TSA said baggage screeners had found the grenades while X-raying the woman's checked luggage.

Woman can now work on submarines

Servicewomen will no longer be banned from working on submarines, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond announced yesterday in his first major speech. An 18-month Royal Navy review found that the original reasonfor the ban, that high levels of carbon dioxide pose a particular health risk to women, was unfounded. MORE

Serial child killer jailed for 25 years

Robert Black, who is serving multiple life sentences for three killings and is being investigated over one more, has been jailed for a minimum of 25 years after murdering a schoolgirl. He snatched nine-year-old Jennifer Cardy as she cycled to a friend's house in County Antrim in 1981, dumping her body in water. MORE

Graveyard guitar plucker faces jail

A cemetery worker from Wisconsin faces 10 years in jail after pleading no contest to stealing an electric guitar from a casket. The cream-coloured Fender Telecaster had been laid on the body of Randall Jourdan, who wished to be buried with his "pride and joy". It was recovered from the suspect's home the next day.

Murdered women's lodger arrested

A man whose landlady was found strangled to death in her Merseyside home has been arrested on suspicion of murder. Barry Morrow, 51, was said to have been spotted in France on the day Angela Holgate, 54, and her mother were found dead. Merseyside Police confirmed he was arrested in the UK. MORE

Secret site of former CIA prison is found

The hitherto secret location of what was one of the CIA's notorious interrogation prisons in Eastern Europe has been traced to a major government building in the centre of the Romanian capital, Bucharest. The prison code-named "Bright Light" was until 2006 in the basement of a registry for classified information.

Gingrich half-sister backs Obama

Newt Gingrich may be cementing his lead among Republican candidates for the White House, but he's having trouble convincing his own family. Mr Gingrich's gay half-sister, Candace Gingrich-Jones, has publicly backed President Obama saying that she disagreed with the socially conservative Mr Gingrich on gay rights.

Fatah stunned by Israel's new releases

The Palestinian Fatah faction was reeling yesterday over Israel's decision to free only low ranking prisoners in the second tranche of releases under the agreement that freed the soldier Gilad Shalit. Fatah had hoped for the freedom of several political prisoners after the first release of high-ranking Hamas prisoners. MORE

Endangered shark bears 19 pups

An endangered shark has delighted zoologists by giving birth to 19 pups in a labour spanning three weeks. Anne the angel shark, a resident of Deep Sea World in North Queensferry, Fife, is the first of her species to breed successfully in captivity. Five years ago, the angel shark was put on a list of threatened species.