The News Matrix: Monday 31 January 2011

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The Independent Online

Miliband sidesteps inquisition on sex

Labour leader Ed Miliband has sidestepped questions about his sexual adventures in an interview in GQ, avoiding the mistake made by Deputy Prime MinisterNick Clegg. Asked how many women he had slept with, Miliband said he “would not boast about his sexual prowess”. MORE

Blue set to represent UK at Eurovision

The four-piece boy band Blue will perform a self-penned song for Britain at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, itwas announced yesterday. They will sing “I Can” at the competition in Dusseldorf, Germany, in May. The band reformed in 2009, after a two-year break. MORE

Taco Bell feels the heat over its ‘beef’

Mexican-themed fast food chain, Taco Bell, which has 5,500 outlets in the US, has spent the weekend on a crisis footing. The reason: a widely reported lawsuit alleging that less than half of the “seasoned beef” in its tacos and burritos has ever made contact with a cow. MORE

‘Lost’ phone-hacking emails discovered

Emails sent by senior managers at News International, while News of the World staffwere allegedly involved in phone-hacking, have been rediscovered. It had previously been claimed that the 2005-2006 messages had been lost. They could provide new insight into the scandal. MORE

Queen’s Brian May backs protesters

Rock star Brian May has given the campaign group, Tripping Up Trump, permission to use his hit Bohemian Rhapsody in their anti-Trump protest video. The group is campaigning against American Donald Trump’s plan to build a £750mgold resort on the coast of Aberdeen.

Young offenders fed poorly in detention

Young offenders are given such poorquality food in detention that fruit acts as an alternative currency to be fought over, a charity has claimed. Boys are buying fruit in bulk and swapping it for phone cards and other items, according to the Howard League for Penal Reform. MORE

Chirac ‘may have Alzheimer’s’

Defence lawyers are expected to seek a postponement of former French President Jacques Chirac’s embezzling trial. A news report claims that Chirac, 78, may have Alzheimer’s disease. MORE

Taliban gunmen turn on their own

Taliban gunmen have begun assassinating their own rank and file in a bid to stop a remote mountain valley sliding from their grasp. They are also attacking tribal elders who are trying to broker a peace deal between disillusioned members of the insurgency and government officials.

Hitler’s last guard say ‘nein’ to fan mail

More than 65 years after World War Two, Adolf Hitler’s last surviving bodyguard says that he can no longer respond to the deluge of fan mail he receives from around the world, because of his age. Rochus Misch is 93 and uses a walking-frame to move around his apartment.

Furniture appears onpiano sandbank

Atable with two chairs, place settings, a bottle of wine and a chef statue appeared on a Miami sandbar just a day after a baby-grand piano was removed. A 16-year-old art student admitted that he put the piano on the sandbar in Biscayne Bay as part of an art project.

Study: cut out meat to help save planet

Cutting almost all meat from the nation’s diet could help reduce greenhouse emissions, says a new report by the WWF and the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health. The guidelines for a green diet recommends just 4 per cent meat to meet the 2020 climate-change targets.

Drugs ‘catapulted’ across the border

Drug smugglers are using an ancient invention as a new way to move marijuana across the border from Mexico to Arizona in the US. Authorities have discovered two 3m-high “drug catapults” – each capable of launching 2kg of the drug at a time – in the Mexican state of Sonora.

When men forgive cheating partners

Fifty per cent of men would forgive their female partner’s infidelity as long as it was with another woman, according to a new study on cheating. Women, however, were less likely to forgive and forget if their boyfriend had been with another man, the University of Texas at Austin study said.

TV host’s corpse ‘stolen from grave’

The body of Mike Bongiorno, who was Italy’s top quiz-show host for more than 50 years and a close friend of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s, was stolen from his grave, officials say. Bongiorno, who died in September 2009 at the age of 85, was buried in Arona near Milan.