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The News Matrix: Tuesday 24 July 2012

Farmers vow to continue protests

Farmers' leaders vowed to continue protests aimed at disrupting milk supplies this week after a Government-brokered peace deal failed to end the dispute over "fair" prices. Farmers re-stated demands for a reversal of cuts of 4p a litre in contracts by next week. MORE

Assad dismisses offer of safe exit

The Syrian regime yesterday dismissed an Arab League offer to provide a safe exit for President Bashar al-Assad and his family if he steps aside as "flagrant interventionism", while admitting for the first time that it possesses weapons of mass destruction. MORE

Maths should be a must for 16-18s

Maths should be a compulsory subject for everyone aged 16 to 18 whether they are doing A-levels or training courses to become beauticians or plumbers, according to leading scientists. A dire lack of mathematical understanding permeates all levels of society. MORE

Mirror and Star dragged into scandal

The Mirror and Daily Star tabloids have been accused of paying public officials. Journalists employed by Trinity Mirror, the Express-owned Star titles and News International allegedly paid two prison officers a total of £50,000, the Leveson Inquiry heard yesterday.

No amnesty for asylum seekers

Downing Street has ruled out an amnesty for illegal immigrants and failed asylum seekers still in Britain. The move has previously been supported by Boris Johnson, left, the Mayor of London.

Clinton dedicated to global Aids fight

The United States will keep pushing for an "Aids-free generation", funding more HIV drugs and medical interventions, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said yesterday. Mrs Clinton's speech sought to underscore Washington's dedication to the global Aids fight amid fears that US leadership might suffer as spending cuts and budget woes threaten government programmes. MORE

Two die escaping fire

A French family of five on holiday in Spain fell or jumped off a seaside cliff during a desperate attempt to escape a raging wildfire, with the father and one of his children plummeting at least 20 metres to their deaths, authorities said yesterday. Flames forced the family and about 150 other tourists out of their cars on Sunday night as most were returning home to France.

World leaders arrive for 'business' Games

The Brazilian president and Chinese business leaders responsible for £365bn of trade will lead the vast influx of world leaders to London in the next 48 hours, for the political and trade jamboree running alongside the Olympics. Brazil's first female president, Dilma Rousseff will be among the leaders of the world's fastest-growing economies targeted by David Cameron for business deals.

Great collector of modern art dies

Herbert Vogel, a retired New York postal worker who, with his wife, Dorothy, created one of the world's most unlikely collections of modern art, then bequeathed much of it to the National Gallery of Art, died on Sunday in New York, aged 89. The pair managed to amass more than 5,000 works of art over 50 years. MORE

Does anyone still do the Lambeth walk?

Scientists are analysing walking styles, such as the "Essex swagger", in different parts of Britain. Staff at Anglia Ruskin University in Chelmsford have set up Britain's first "gait analysis laboratory" and wants members of the public to come forward to help them detect subtle differences in walking styles.

Base's signal affects electric garage doors

A radio signal being transmitted out of a submarine base is likely to be behind reports of garage doors failing to open and close in southeastern Connecticut, the US Navy said yesterday. The signal is part of a radio system used by the military to coordinate responses with civil emergency workers.

Plan B: I'm sorry I wore 'Nazi' shirt

The rapper and singer Plan B apologised for wearing a T-shirt emblazoned with the name of a neo-Nazi skinhead band. The shirt he wore in a photoshoot for Shortlist magazine showed graffiti of the 1970s Lancashire rock band Skrewdriver. "The minute I found out what the words meant I was angry with myself," he said.

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Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor