The News Matrix: Tuesday 31 December 2013


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The Independent Online

Body of missing teenager is found

The body of 17-year-old Adam Pickup, who went missing in Manchester city centre on  Saturday, has been found near a train station a mile from where he was last seen, police believe. Two men arrested over Adam’s disappearance were released without charge and Manchester police are no longer treating the teenager’s death as suspicious. MORE

Troops fire missiles at Syrian warplanes

Lebanese troops have fired missiles at Syrian warplanes violating its airspace for what is believed to be the first time. The army was reportedly responding to a raid in Khirbet Daoud, near Arsal in the Bekaa Valley. The Lebanese authorities had until now not responded militarily. MORE

Stats overhaul to reassure the public

Crime statistics are to be overhauled in an attempt to allay public fears that many alleged offences are never properly investigated. Policing minister Damian Green said the new system, to be phased in in England and Wales from the new year, should provide greater transparency.

Commercial use of drones to be tested

Six American states have been earmarked for the test of commercial drones. The sites will be based in Alaska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas and Virginia. The US does not yet allow commercial use of drones, but is to release operational guidelines for companies by 2016.

Thousands of police staff to strike

Thousands of police civilian staff including 999 call handlers will strike this evening, coinciding with a fresh walkout by firefighters. About 7,500 civilian police workers in London will take action for 24 hours in a dispute over pay while Fire Brigades Union members will stop work for six hours.

Passengers to be airlifted from ship

Passengers marooned on a ship trapped in ice will be airlifted once the weather permits, Russian officials said. The announcement came after an Australian icebreaker had to turn back. The ship is carrying 74 people.

Straw among British MPs to visit Tehran

A four-strong delegation of MPs and peers is to visit Iran next week in the latest sign of a thaw in relations with Tehran. Members of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Iran have been invited by the British/Iran Friendship Group of the Iranian parliament. Former Foreign Secretary Jack Straw will be in the delegation.

Khodorkovsky granted visa

Switzerland has granted the Russian former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky a visa. He applied for a three-month visa after his arrival in Berlin on 20 December, following his pardon by Vladimir Putin. The 50-year-old wants to travel to Switzerland to see where his sons go to school, a spokesman said.