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The News Matrix: Tuesday 6 August 2013

Labour’s lead over Tories has halved

Labour’s lead over the Tories has more than halved in four months, a poll of polls for i has shown. July was a particularly difficult month for leader Ed Miliband, who faced problems with his reforms to Labour’s links with the trade unions, as well as criticism that the stance of senior shadow frontbenchers towards Coalition policies is not aggressive enough. MORE

Regime missiles kill hundreds of civilians

Hundreds of Syrian civilians have been killed in the past few months by government missile attacks on populated areas, says Human Rights Watch. The claims come after the watchdog investigated nine missile attacks which killed at least 215 civilians, including 100 children.MORE

Green investors’ climate warning

The world’s biggest investors in green energy have warned that policies to tackle climate change are “inconsistent and halting”. A survey of 84 international investment firms showed the group see extreme weather as a sign that climate change is already upon us. MORE

Six people killed in fresh attacks

Attacks have killed six people in and near Baghdad. Police officials say a bomb went off yesterday afternoon as people lined up to buy bread in a mainly Shia area of Baghdad. Four people died. Earlier, gunmen shot dead the owner of a neighbourhood power generator and his son in Madian.

Mandela family in bill bungle

The City of Johannesburg has apologised to Nelson Mandela and his family for mistakenly posting a non-payment notice on the former President’s house warning him his electricity was about to be cut off. The notice should have been delivered to a different house.

Thousands sign up to run with the bulls

Bull runs, inspired by the one held in the Spanish town of Pamplona, are to be held in southern US cities this summer and autumn. Some 5,000 people have already signed up to the first run in Virginia. MORE

Fort Hood killer’s court martial begins

The military court martial of Nidal Malik Hasan begins today, four years after he killed 13 people at the Fort Hood military base in Texas. The trial will be closely watched, not least as Hasan, who faces the death penalty, will be representing himself and may cross-examine many who survived the attacks. MORE

Woman’s body found in bathing pond

The body of a woman in her fifties was found in the Women’s Pond, a bathing spot in Hampstead Heath, London. She was recovered by police divers after the authorities were alerted by bathers concerned about the missing swimmer. The death is being treated as “non-suspicious” as the body awaits formal identification.

Lego confirms ‘Simpsons’ series

Lego has confirmed it will launch a special The Simpsons-themed series next year. A spokesman for the Danish company would not give any details about what characters would be included, but said it hoped the series will “appeal to fans.” Lego has seen its sales soar in recent years thanks to similar tie-ins.

Doctor Who meets Mister Tucker

Doctor Who fans are celebrating the appointment of Peter Capaldi as the new Doctor by creating expletive-packed spoofs online. Famed for his role as foul-mouthed spin doctor Malcolm Tucker in the BBC’s The Thick Of It, the character’s outbursts have been edited together with footage from Doctor Who on Youtube.

The smell of a poor jobs market

Cover your noses – a peak in graduate unemployment has seen a decline in male grooming. A survey for the consumer magazine The Grocer shows that 7 per cent of young men no longer use deodorant and 5 per cent of men aged 17 to 24 wash their hair less than once a week as a result of high unemployment. MORE

Call for Chico the monkey to go home

The removal of a pet monkey from the family that adopted him 40 years ago is upsetting Brazilians. More than 4,000 people have signed a petition urging Sao Paulo environmental police to return Chico, a capuchin monkey, to 71-year-old Elizete Farias Carmona  It is illegal to keep wild animals as pets in Brazil.

First gay couple get married

A gay couple showed up before dawn to be the first to register under Uruguay’s new marriage equality law. The TV producer Sergio Miranda and artist Rodrigo Borda, below, have been partners for 14 years. They signed up at Montevideo’s civil registry yesterday. Mr Borda called it a “historic day.” Uruguay is the second Latin American country to allow gay marriage, after Argentina.

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