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The News Matrix: Thursday 6 October 2011

2,000 BBC jobs to go in cost-cutting plan

More than 10 per cent of BBC staff are set to lose their jobs as part of a restructuring plan designed to deliver 20 per cent savings over five years. Director-general Mark Thompson is expected to make the announcement this morning that 2,000 people will be made redundant.

Deadline looms for new lawsuits

Thirteen new lawsuits have been brought against News International as the deadline for claimants to identify themselves as victims of phone hacking approaches. Among the new names are Sarah Payne, who campaigned alongside former News of the World editor Rebekah Brooks. MORE

Dolly’s legacy in stem cell technique

Scientists are closer than ever to producing valid stem cells from human embryos, using a cloning technique similar to that used in the birth of Dolly the sheep. It is hoped that a patient’s own skin cells will soon be used to create embryonic stem cells for use in transplants. MORE

Medics who treated protesters win retrial

A group of medics who were jailed for their alleged support of pro-democracy protesters have had their sentences nullified. Bahrain’s attorney general ordered a retrial in a civilian court of the 20 doctors, nurses and paramedics who treated injured demonstrators.

‘Too intoxicated to know where he was’

Rock star David Gilmour’s son Charlie, 21, was intoxicated and did not realise he was swinging from the Cenotaph during fees protests in London, David Spens QC, told the Court of Appeal. MORE

Microsoft mulls bid for Yahoo

Microsoft was last night considering a bid for Yahoo, according to the Reuters news agency, which cited “sources close to the situation”. Yahoo was criticised in 2008 for rejecting a bid by Microsoft and is reportedly being circled by several suitors. The source said Microsoft may be seeking a partner for a buyout but said any deal would be a long way off.

Victim of helicopter crash is named

A British woman who was killed on a helicopter trip in New York organised to celebrate her 40th birthday was named yesterday. Sonia Marra died when the helicopter plunged into New York’s East River on Tuesday. Two fellow passengers were in a critical condition yesterday. MORE

Huntley attack judge urges system review

The judge sentencing the inmate who slashed the throat of Soham murderer Ian Huntley and killed another prisoner has called for an urgent review of systems at high-security prisons. Damien Fowkes, 36, barricaded himself into a cell with Colin Hatch and strangled him.

Six charged with plot to assassinate Karzai

Six people, including one of Hamid Karzai’s bodyguards, have been charged with plotting to assassinate the Afghan President. Afghanistan’s intelligence agency said the attack was planned in Pakistan, which will disrupt attempts to soothe relations between the two countries. MORE

Killer took phone of victim to Thailand

A man from Sussex who bludgeoned his landlord to death later used his victim’s mobile phone to text family and friends. Stuart Crawford, 26, used the phone of Michael Ryan, 67, as he fled to Thailand. Crawford was jailed for at least 26 years yesterday.

Norway hits back at salmon restrictions

Norway has reported China to the World Trade Organisation in an escalation of a row about fish. China imposed import controls on Norwegian salmon last year in apparent retribution for the Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Liu Xiaobo. MORE

‘Ludicrous’ boffin wins Nobel Prize

A scientist whose discovery of “quasicrystals” was deemed so ludicrous he was asked to resign has won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Daniel Shechtman found that the position of atoms in a metal alloy can break the rules of crystallography by forming unrepeating patterns. MORE

Duchess, 85, marries her young beau

The Duchess of Alba, 85, said to hold more titles than any other European noble, married a civil servant 24 years her junior yesterday. Cayetana Fitz-James Stuart y Silva and Alfonso Díez exchanged vows in her palace in Seville, Spain, despite opposition from her family. MORE

National Trust signs 4 millionth member

Membership of the National Trust has topped four million, more than the population of Wales – and more than three times the membership of all the political parties combined. This may worry the Government, whose proposed planning changes are the target of a Trust campaign.

Italy’s star chef joins up with McDonald’s

Italy’s most celebrated chef has got a job with McDonald’s. Gualtiero Marchesi, the first chef in Italy to earn three Michelin stars, said he had “created” two new hamburgers and a dessert for the Italian menu of the fast-food chain. The move was criticised by nutritionists. MORE

Adele cancels US tour over voice

Singer Adele has cancelled her 10-date US tour over fears that she could permanently damage her vocal cords. Doctors have said she needs rest after finding a haemorrhage on the cords. MORE

Hollywood stars’ homage to Kadyrov

Chechnya’s Kremlin-backed leader marked his 35th birthday yesterday with a lavish celebration in central Grozny featuring Hollywood stars. It came amid concerns from activists that the territory under the rule of Ramzan Kadyrov remains rife with rights abuses. MORE

Chilli chompers end up in casualty

Two people taking part in the “world’s hottest chilli” eating competition at an Indian restaurant in Edinburgh were hospitalised on Saturday. Curie Kim, 21, said eating the chillis felt like “being chainsawed in the stomach with hot sauce on the chainsaw”, and was treated at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.

Student admits to hacking PM account

Thai authorities yesterday arrested a student who reportedly confessed to hacking the Twitter account of the country’s prime minister. Ekkavit Tongdeeworakul, 22, turned himself in after allegedly hijacking Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra’s account. MORE

Folk guitar maestro Bert Jansch dies

The influential folk guitarist Bert Jansch has died of lung cancer at 67. The Scottish musician, best known for his work with the group Pentangle, was a prominent figure in the folk revival of the 1960s. He inspired many, including Jimmy Page and Johnny Marr. MORE

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