The News Matrix: Friday 18 November 2011


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The Independent Online


Ministers oppose rural building plans

Conservative ministers have joined backbench MPs in the revolt against proposals to allow "sustainable development" in the countryside. David Cameron sees building more homes as a crucial part of shoring up the economy, but rebel ministers claim that rural areas could be ruined. MORE

Seven injured in clashes on march

At least seven people were injured in Cairo yesterday when residents clashed with Christians marching through the capital to demand an end to what they see as discrimination by the state. The Coptic Christians were marching towards Tahrir Square when the clashes broke out.

Emir orders protest clampdown

Kuwait's Emir has ordered security forces to "take all measures" to maintain order after protesters stormed parliament demanding the resignation of the Prime Minister over alleged corruption. The emir called for "stricter measures to confront this chaotic behaviour". MORE

Miliband warns over social funding

Ed Miliband has warned that a future Labour government would need to explore "new ways" of administering social justice without increasing public spending. He said the "Blair-Brown" model, where tax revenues from financial services funded public services, was no longer viable. MORE

Fortnum protesters discharged with costs

Ten protesters who occupied Fortnum & Mason during an anti-cuts rally in March have been convicted of aggravated trespass. They were each given a conditional discharge and ordered to pay £1,000 costs. MORE

Cameron set to clash with Merkel over ECB

David Cameron will today tell Angela Merkel that he opposes Germany's call for a new European Treaty, feeling that the complex negotiations would leave the public cold in the face of the eurozone crisis. They are also expected to clash over the European Central Bank's role in bailing out financially stricken countries in debt. MORE

Botulism alert over Grossman korma

A third child from one family is in hospital after eating Loyd Grossman korma sauce. The child's two siblings, from central Scotland's Forth Valley, have been confirmed as suffering from botulism. Their condition is said to be improving. The public has been advised not to eat the sauce.

Antibiotic-resistant bugs are spreading

The "unthinkable scenario of untreatable infections" is becoming a reality, experts have warned. The growth of superbugs resistant to all antibiotics has caused a rise in the number of European cases where patients have illnesses almost impossible to treat. MORE

Syria's allies call for urgent talks

Syria's allies in Russia called yesterday for urgent talks between Damascus and the opposition, saying an alleged attack by renegade troops on a government building looked like the start of a "civil war". The defectors reportedly fired machine-guns and rockets at an air force base. MORE

Dissident claims UK agents turned him in

A Libyan dissident tortured by Muammar Gaddafi's regime has claimed he was rendered from China to Tripoli by British agents. Sami al-Saadi filed a complaint with the Metropolitan Police yesterday and his lawyers want an investigation.

Ex-Khmer Rouge leader 'unfit for trial'

The UN-backed tribunal has ruled that former Khmer Rouge leader, Ieng Thirith, is unfit to stand trial for genocide and other crimes because she has Alzheimer's. The tribunal said the 79-year-old would be freed within 24 hours. MORE

Marc Jacobs collection stolen

Thieves have made off with £40,000-worth of clothes from one of the world's leading designers. The Marc Jacobs samples were stolen from near the label's Mayfair store on Wednesday. The £40,000 figure suggests not everything was robbed. A skirt alone can cost £7,000. MORE

eBay to open 'pop-up' shop near Oxford St

Internet shopping giant eBay is opening its first store in the UK next month, following a growing trend for online retailers to flog their wares on the high street. The "pop-up" shop, on Dean Street near Oxford Street, London, will be open for just five days from 1 December.

Flesh-eating fish invade tourist spot

Thousands of flesh-eating piranhas have infested a river beach popular with tourists in western Brazil and have bitten at least 15 swimmers. Officials in the city of Caceres said this is the first time they have had a problem with piranhas at Daveron beach on the Paraguay river.

Culling of stray dogs for Euro 2012 to end

Bowing to pressure from Western civic groups, Ukraine yesterday ordered all mayors to stop "euthanising" stray dogs and build animal shelters for them instead. The killings had been ordered to clear the streets for the Euro 2012 championship in June.

Attempts held around the world

Irish leprechauns, tea-sipping Britons, Australian Abba impersonators and the oldest yoga teacher on the planet were among the 300,000 people setting world records yesterday as part of the annual Guinness World Records Day.

Vatican to sue over doctored Pope image

The Vatican has vowed to take legal action against the Italian fashion chain Benetton over an advertising campaign featuring an image of the Pope kissing an imam. Lawyers acting for the Vatican were told to "take the proper legal measures" to stop any use of the doctored photo. MORE

Tracksuit trick gets Irish fan into dugout

An Irish football fan blagged his way into the manager's dugout for last week's Euro 2012 play-off against Estonia despite not having a ticket. Conor Cunningham "borrowed" an Estonian tracksuit and strolled in to take a place on the Estonia bench.

Church roofs lose their metal

Metal theft at Britain's churches has risen by 70 per cent this year, costing £4.25m. Criminals are still trying to plunder church roofs for lead even after they have been replaced by steel and zinc – prompting calls by English Heritage for churches to put up "Dear Thief..." warnings.

Pilot's toilet mishap prompts terror scare

A pilot accidentally locked himself in the toilet on a flight from North Carolina to New York and touched off a terror scare. The co-pilot alerted air-traffic controllers when a passenger with a "thick foreign accent" tried to alert the cockpit.