The News Matrix: Thursday 3 November 2011


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The Independent Online


Missile test fuels talk of strike on Iran

Israel test-fired a ballistic missile yesterday – believed to be long range – amid reports that the Prime Minister is mustering support for a strike on Tehran’s nuclear facilities. The missile launch fed speculation after signs Israel’s Cabinet has seriously discussed the merits of an attack. MORE

Schools to give priority to adoptees

Adopted children will be given priority in the hunt for school places under a new admissions code, the Government announced yesterday. Only children in care are currently given preferential treatment. Over-subscribed schools will be allowed to expand and infant schools to ignore the class size limit of 30 if it is to take in twins. MORE

Wife found guilty in handbrake death

A woman who killed her husband by grabbing the handbrake while he was driving was found guilty of manslaughter yesterday. Caroline Meeking, 45, from Somerset, was in a drunken row with her husband, Alan, 29, when she pulled the handbrake and caused the vehicle to crash.

Cain angry over sex scandal allegations

Republican presidential frontrunner, Herman Cain, has clashed with reporters over sexual harassment allegations made against him. Mr Cain snapped: “Don’t bother to ask these other questions.” MORE

Woman faces trial on Facebook riot charge

A19-year-old woman who allegedly set up a Facebook event encouraging rioting will go on trial later this month, a judge said today. Hollie Bentley, of Wakefield, West Yorkshire, denies creating the “Wakey Riot” page and inciting violent disorder. She has been given unconditional bail until her 28 November trial.

Mohamed cartoon magazine torched

A firebomb attack gutted the headquarters of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo yesterday, in what appeared to be a revenge attack after the magazine showed a cartoon of the Prophet Mohamed and a speech bubble with the words: “100 lashes if you don’t die of laughter.” MORE

Teens attacked OAP with concrete block

A pensioner was rushed to hospital on Halloween after a group of youths lured him out of his home and hurled a concrete block at his leg. Greater Manchester Police arrested four teenagers over the attack, which left Bernard O’Donnell, 79, with severe muscle damage.

Ban on countries that ‘abuse’ workers

The Philippines, one of the world’s biggest exporters of labour, has blacklisted 41 countries which, it says, do not adequately protect foreign workers. The ban, which covers such countries as India, Afghanistan, Libya, North Korea and Pakistan, was imposed following reports of workers being abused. MORE

Fracking tests cause of Blackpool tremors

Fifty separate earth tremors have been caused in the Blackpool area by “fracking”, the drilling method used to extract shale gas. The huge number of seismic movements was admitted by one of the authors of a report into two earth tremors likely to have been caused by fracking by Cuadrilla Resources. MORE

Nottingham beats Harvard in debate

A group of British students have triumphed in China’s answer to University Challenge. Watched by a television audience of one billion, a team from Nottingham University beat Harvard in the prestigious International Varsity Debate which pits the world’s leading institutions against each other. MORE

Half-cut man brushes off payment

A man who refused to pay for a professional haircut he got while drunk has been fined NZ$150 (£74) for “obtaining by deception”. Trevor Crampton told the court he had no idea he had committed the offence until he looked in the mirror the following morning. The judge said the incident had been “traumatic” for the hairdresser.

Find shows humans got to Europe sooner

A fragment of jawbone has helped scientists pin down the date when humans first arrived in Europe from Africa. Carbon dating ascertained that the bone, which came from an elderly person who lived near present-day Torquay, was between 41,000 and 44,000 years old – 7,000 years older than previously thought.

Pudding well past best-by date is found

A 112-year-old Christmas pudding sent to Royal Navy officers during the Boer War has been discovered at the back of a cupboard in Dorset and will go on display at the Royal Naval Museum in Portsmouth. The message on the Peek, Frean & Co’s Teetotal Plum Pudding’s tin reads “For the Naval Brigade, In the Front”.

CBS escapes fine for Jackson exposure

An appeals court yesterday threw out a federal agency’s decision to fine CBS television network $550,000 (£345,000) for airing singer Janet Jackson’s “wardrobe malfunction” during the 2004 Super Bowl broadcast. Jackson’s breast was briefly exposed after singer Justin Timberlake accidentally ripped off part of her bustier.