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The News Matrix: Saturday 24 November 2012


Man arrested over tomato attack on MP

A man has been arrested in connection with an attack which saw the Conservative MP Mike Weatherley pelted with rocks and tomatoes. Mr Weatherley was attending a talk on squatting at the University of Sussex. A 24-year-old man from Brighton was arrested on suspicion of affray and remains in custody.

Police clash with airport protesters

More than 500 riot police have clashed with squatters in a wooded area of western France opposing the building of a new airport. In a muddy standoff yesterday over the Notre-Dame-Des-Landes airport due to open in 2017, protesters hurled petrol bombs while police fired teargas.

Tory MP defends many Sri Lanka trips

The 28-year-old Tory MP James Wharton has insisted he is not a "cheerleader" for the Sri Lankan government despite attending official Sri Lankan functions in Britain and travelling to the country on several occasions in the past 12 months.  MORE

Protests as Morsi boosts own powers

Opponents of Egypt's Islamist President clashed with his supporters across the country yesterday, burning offices of the Muslim Brotherhood in the most violent and widespread protests since Mohammed Morsi came to power, sparked by his move to grant himself sweeping powers. MORE

Puerto Rico: Shot boxer's family face agonising wait

The family of former boxing champion Hector "Macho" Camacho have decided to wait two more days before taking him off life support after he was declared clinically brain dead. The 50-year-old, who was raised in New York, was shot in the face on Tuesday in Bayamon. MORE

British woman of 63 defends her 'rapist'

A British grandmother appeared in court to defend her alleged rapist. Diane Davis, 63, above, is convinced Derick Crawford, 47, was arrested by mistake. She was attacked on the island in 2010 but insists Mr Crawford is the "wrong build, wrong age and wrong facial shape". MORE

South Africa: Union members shot dead in mine clash

Two workers at Harmony Gold Mining's Kusasalethu gold mine, 50 miles from Johannesburg, were shot dead in a clash between rival unions on Thursday. Members of one union moved their meeting into the mine's hostel when it started raining, which led to a clash with another union.

Child sex abuser is jailed for life

A student who posed as a babysitter to abuse girls was jailed for life. Rob Saunders, 23, will serve at least eight years for raping an eight-year-old. He advertised his services as a babysitter on the Gumtree website and tricked parents into letting him "play games" with children. MORE

Refugees held in grim offshore camps

Campaigners have condemned Australia's "Pacific Solution" – whereby asylum-seekers are sent to a detention centre on the remote island of Nauru. Amnesty International described conditions at the camp, where 400 men are currently living 14-to-a-tent, as "grim". MORE

Wonga apologises over attack on MP

The payday lender Wonga will fund the promotion of a debt advice fair in East London after one of its employees launched a Twitter attack on the campaigning Walthamstow MP Stella Creasy, calling her "mental", "nuts" and a "self-serving egomaniac".

Circus owner guilty over elephant abuse

Circus owner Bobby Roberts has been convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to Anne the elephant. Undercover footage showed the 58-year-old Asian elephant being kicked and hit with a pitchfork. Roberts, 69, was given a three-year conditional discharge. MORE

Mobiles cut off to thwart bombers

Pakistan will suspend mobile phone services across most of the country over the next two days to prevent bomb attacks during a key religious commemoration. Militants often detonate bombs using mobiles and the government has implemented service suspensions in the past.

Shooting breaks day-old ceasefire

Israeli troops fired on crowds surging toward Israel's border fence with Gaza yesterday, killing one Palestinian and wounding 19 in the first violence since a truce between Israel and Hamas took hold a day earlier. The incident is unlikely to jeopardize the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire.

He's the greatest: one-eyed hero back

DangerMouse creator Brian Cosgrove is returning to children's animation. The 79-year-old's company was absorbed into ITV and closed in 2009, but he is planning to revive it. He lamented the fact that

Roller coaster may get Atlantis theme

When Hurricane Sandy ravaged the US east coast, images of the ruined roller coaster at a New Jersey amusement pier helped convey the extent of the devastation. Now officials say they may leave the ride – submerged in the Atlantic Ocean – as a tourist attraction.

A spending guide to lasting happiness

Money can buy lasting happiness as long as you spend it wisely, according to Downing Street's "Nudge Unit". The Behavioural Insights Team is gripped by an upcoming book entitled Happy Money, compiled by a two American psychologists.

US Gang sold $1.4m of non-existent cars

Police are pursuing three fugitives and have arrested four suspected members of a gang which sold non-existent cars for $1.4m. They advertised on websites such as eBay and Autotrader and arranged for wire transfers to pay for the vehicles, but no car was ever produced.

China: Liu the cross-dresser grandad is a net hit

A 72-year-old man has become an internet sensation after his granddaughter dressed him in young women's clothes to promote her clothing shop. Photos of Liu Xianping have seen him dubbed the "world's coolest" grandfather and sales at the store have increased fivefold.