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The News Matrix: Monday 11 March 2013

Archbishop wades into welfare debate

A row between the church and state rumbled on last night following claims by the Archbishop of Canterbury that proposed welfare reforms would drive children and families into poverty. MORE

Buyers warned of smuggled puppies

Prospective pet owners have been urged to buy dogs only from legitimate breeders amid claims of a surge in puppy smuggling. Channel 4's Dispatches reports a big increase in the number of dogs being brought into the country, many illegally.

Nude cyclists call for more bike lanes

Nude cyclists rolled through Sao Paulo to call attention to the bare facts: this Brazilian city is dangerous for bikers, and short on dedicated bike lanes. Some did a Full Monty ride while others opted for a relatively demure topless protest.

Northern Ireland: Priest risked life to try and save soldiers

A priest has spoken for the first time of how he tried to protect two British soldiers from being shot by the IRA by lying on the ground before they were killed. Father Alec Reid described how one gunman told him: “Get up, or I'll f***ing well shoot you as well.” MORE

Warning as comet makes rare visit

Stargazers are warned they risk damaging their eyes if they try to glimpse Comet Pan-Starrs today as it flies near the sun – but it won't be back again for 110,000 years.

i circulation keeps on growing

i was the only title in the national press to record an increase in its circulation, official industry figures have revealed. The paper had a sale of 298,206 during February 2013 – a 12.8 per cent increase on the same period last year and a 1.4 per cent rise over the previous month. The combined sale of sister papers The Independent and i is 373,331 a rise of 1 per cent on last year.

In total, the quality newspaper market continues to fall, down 3.9 per cent on February 2012. The Guardian sold 193,586 last month (down 10.4 per cent on last year), The Times sold 393,814 (down 0.9 per cent) and the Daily Telegraph sold 541,036 (down 6.5 per cent).

Lib Dems reject secret courts plan

The Liberal Democrat conference delivered a blow to Nick Clegg by rejecting the Government's plans for “secret courts” that would hear evidence in private. Two leading Liberal Democrats resigned in protest at the leadership's support for the Justice and Security Bill, which would allow courts to protect the identity of members of the security services by sitting behind closed doors. MORE

Cat burglar is key to washing mystery

The mystery of the vanishing washing that has plagued a village in Wales has been solved, following the apprehension of a light-fingered cat. Residents of Llanwrda, in Carmarthenshire, undertook a full-scale investigation to find the culprit.

Pakistan: Christians fight back in blasphemy row

Hundreds of Christians clashed with police yesterday, a day after a Muslim mob burned dozens of homes owned by members of the religious group in retaliation for alleged insults against the Prophet Mohamed. Christians are often the target of Pakistan's harsh blasphemy laws. MORE

Hungary: Protests over threat to democracy

Thousands protested in central Budapest over the weekend against imminent changes to the country's constitution. They fear the law changes will curb democratic rights, echoing worries this week from the European Union and the United States. MORE

Austria: Life under Hitler 'not that bad,' says survey

An Austrian survey has found that 42 per cent of respondents said that “not everything was bad under Adolf Hitler” whose Nazi government annexed Austria 75 years ago. The survey also found that 54 per cent of the 502 respondents said a Nazi party would have some success today. MORE

United States: Sanctuary reopens after intern's death

Cat Haven, the California wildlife sanctuary where a lion attacked and killed 24-year-old intern Dianna Hanson last week reopened yesterday, four days after her death.

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