The News Matrix: Saturday 12 November 2011


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The Independent Online


Universal set to buy rival EMI for £1.2bn

EMI’s music business is set to be taken over by rival Universal after a £1.2bn deal yesterday. The EMI division, home to the Beatles, will become part of the world’s biggest recording company, which is owned by France’s Vivendi, whose artists include the Rolling Stones. MORE

US soldier jailed for killing villagers

AUS soldier has been found guilty of killing Afghan villagers for sport, and taking fingers and teeth as trophies. Staff Sergeant Calvin Gibbs placed weapons near the bodies of his victims to suggest they were Taliban members. The 26-year-old was sentenced to life in prison. MORE

‘Lax’ scrap metal law is fuelling thefts

The surge in “shameless” thefts of war memorials is being fuelled by lax scrap metal regulation, which means dealers can buy plaques unchecked, the Local Government Association warned yesterday. The LGA has called for councils to be given tough new powers to stop the trade.

Football ground tour for Coldplay

Coldplay are to play a string of UK stadium shows next year, they announced today. The gigs at major football grounds follow the band’s short series of arena gigs which take place next month. The band kick off the dates at Coventry’s Ricoh Stadium on 29 May.

Arab League urged to suspend Syria

Syria should be suspended from the Arab League and pressure applied to stop “carnage”, Human Rights Watch said. It accused Syria of crimes against humanity in its efforts to crush pro-democracy protests. The Arab League meets in Cairo today to discuss the situation in Syria. MORE

Ministers propose 12-hour nurseries

Up to 140,000 two-year-olds from poor homes could benefit from plans to extend free nursery education, ministers claim. The government says the plans, which are out for consultation, will give parents flexibility, through measures such as free early education from 7am to 7pm.

Expenses cheat vows to return to Lords

The disgraced expenses cheat Lord Hanningfield insisted he had “ paid his debt” to society today as he pledged to return to the Upper House. The former Tory, who was released early from jail in September, said he had gone through “hell” and been left “pretty much destitute” by a £100,000-plus legal bill.

Mine boss will fight explosion charges

The chief executive of the mining company running New Zealand’s Pike River coal mine, Peter Whittall, has been charged over the methane gas explosion that ripped through the mine last year. He claimed he was being “scapegoated” and said he would fight the charges. MORE

Brendan quick-steps in to partner Holly

Brendan Cole is to stand in for Artem Chigvintsev on tonight’s Strictly Come Dancing after the Russian suffered a back injury. Cole will dance with former Neighbours star Holly Valance on the BBC1 show. She said: “Hopefully the skills that I’ve learnt will help me to adapt easily.”

‘Month-old’ baby on Government payroll

A new born baby has been found on the Nigerian government payroll, with the child’s father picking up its cheque for the past three years. The baby, listed as a one month old, is one of many so-called “ghost workers” found to be getting salaries without performing a job.

'Think before you cut,’ councils told

Local councils desperate to make savings in the current financial crisis were yesterday urged to “think before they cut” services for the elderly and the weak. The call came following High Court rulings striking down decisions made by two authorities trying to plug budget gaps.

Brangelina embark on Vietnam tour

Hollywood power-couple Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie were visiting Vietnam yesterday with their brood of six children. It was the first time their seven-year-old son Pax had been back to the country since he was adopted by the couple four years ago. MORE