The News Matrix: Saturday 12 January 2013


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The Independent Online

Rioters burn bus and block Belfast roads

Petrol bombs were thrown at police in Rathcoole, County Antrim, as a bus went up in flames last night during the latest violence to hit Northern Ireland. A series of roads in Belfast were closed as protests continued over the city council's decision to stop flying the Union Flag every day of the year.

US regulators order review of Dreamliner

A spate of technical problems with Boeing's 787 Dreamliner has led US regulators to order a review of the new passenger jet. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said there were "concerns" over recent events, including a fire on a parked 787 on Monday. MORE

9 in 10 ignorant of compensation limits

Only one in 10 people know how much of their money would be protected if their bank went under, according to new research. Just 12 per cent know the compensation limits for deposits and savings; over half knew that some form of compensation would be available. MORE

Contraceptive pill is safe, women are told

The European Medicines Agency insists the contraceptive pill is safe despite claims by dozens of women in France that they suffered potentially fatal blood clots while taking it. The EMA, which licenses drugs for use in the UK, said there was "no new evidence" of any safety problem. MORE

Banker in death jump was 'under pressure'

A banker who jumped to his death from the rooftop of a London restaurant was under "an enormous amount of pressure" at work, an inquest heard yesterday. Nico Lambrechts, 46, fell seven floors from the Coq D'Argent months after starting at investment bank Investec. MORE

1,300 jobs go as 187 Jessops shops close

More than 1,300 jobs were lost as all 187 branches of the camera shop Jessops were closed down last night. Administrator PriceWaterhouseCoopers said more jobs may go at the firm's Leicester head office. Jessops posted a £5.2m loss for the year to January 2012. MORE

Transsexual Hayley to come a cropper

Coronation Street's first transsexual character is leaving the soap after 15 years. Julie Hesmondhalgh, who plays Hayley Cropper, said she had had "the most wonderful time" but wanted to pursue new projects. A "dramatic exit" is planned for the much-loved character.

Tory misses show after 'sleeping in'

George Osborne's ex-chief of staff Matthew Hancock has fended off claims he overslept after he missed an appearance on ITV's Daybreak. The Tory minister said he was "30 seconds late" for his 6.40am slot and wasn't let into the studio, but show presenter Matt Barbet said he was half an hour late.

A playlist to help you rest in peace

A Swedish man has designed a coffin with loudspeakers linked to an updatable music playlist. Fredrik Hjelmquist said his £19,000 coffin would entertain the dead and provide solace for the living by letting friends and relatives alter the deceased's playlist online.

Les Mis actors strike perfect note – finally

The actors on the set of Les Misérables were so determined to ensure their singing wasn't singled out for criticism that in some cases they filmed more than a dozen takes. "I remember Eddie Redmayne did 21 takes of 'Empty Chairs' and we used take 21," director Tom Hooper said.

UKIP candidate quits over gay marriage

UKIP's prospective candidate for Chester has become the second figure forced out of the party this week after expressing support for gay marriage. Richard Lowe says local party leaders said they would not campaign for someone who supported the proposals on same-sex marriage. MORE

Inmates to read six books in a year

Inmates at London's Pentonville Prison have accepted a challenge to read six books in a year in a scheme aimed at stopping reoffending. One prisoner described the reading sessions as "therapeutic". The likelihood of reoffending is reduced when inmates have skills such as reading. MORE

France: Kurdish women were shot in head

The Kurdish women found dead in Paris on Thursday were shot several times in the head. The activists were wearing coats, suggesting they were about to leave. The Turkish government claimed they were assassinated as a result of faction-fighting in the Kurdistan Workers' Party. MORE

USA: Teacher hailed a hero for ending shooting

A teacher at the Californian school where a gunman opened fire has been hailed a hero after it was revealed he calmly persuaded the shooter to lower his gun. Ryan Heber, his head grazed by a shot-gun pellet, talked to the 16-year-old gunman to allow his science students to get away to safety. MORE

USA: No one likely to be convicted over 9/11

The Guantanamo trials are in such disarray that nobody may ever be convicted of the 9/11 attacks, the base's chief prosecutor warned. Brigadier General Mark Martins asked the Pentagon to drop conspiracy charges against five men awaiting trial for their part in the atrocity after a conviction was overturned.

Germany: Kinski's daughter backs abuse claim

The daughter of the late German film actor Klaus Kinski has backed her older sister's allegations he sexually abused her. Pola Kinski accuses her father of raping her until she was 19 years old in a new autobiography. Nastassja Kinski, left, said: "Even fathers do horrific things." MORE

Pakistan: Victims' families refuse to bury dead

Residents of the Pakistani city hit by a terror attack which killed 100 people on Thursday have refused to bury their dead. Quetta's Shias said they would not bury the bodies until the government improves security in the area, where Shia muslims have become a target. MORE

Belgium: Public fury at Queen over 'tax-avoidance'

The Belgian monarchy could soon see its €15m-a-year allowance cut. Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo plans to force royals to show how they spend their funds. The government rebuked Queen Fabiola for setting up a special inheritance system widely seen by an angry public as a tax dodge.

Italy: Gangsters rescued by printer error

An administrative error caused by a faulty printer could lead to the early release of dozens of convicted gangsters. In 2011, a Milan court jailed 110 gang members, but as court workers prepared to present the judge's reasons for the sentences, they omitted 120 of the 900 pages. MORE