The News Matrix: Wednesday 15 May 2013


Cannabis drug may prevent diabetes

Smoking cannabis may prevent the development of diabetes, one of the most rapidly rising chronic disorders in the world. A study found regular users of the drug had lower levels of the hormone insulin after fasting – a signal they are protected against diabetes – and lower insulin resistance.

EU pledges €500m for rebuilding

The EU will pledge about €500m (£424m) to help Mali rebuild after months of conflict, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said yesterday. Mali’s President Dioncounda Traore also told the briefing the country will hold presidential elections on 28 July.

Gunmen kill 11 in liquor-store attack

Gunmen opened fire on a row of liquor stores in Baghdad, killing at least 11 people. The attackers were in four cars that struck shortly after sunset. Five people were reported wounded. Nobody claimed responsibility, but Islamic extremists have frequently targeted liquor stores.

Call to prosecute staff over neglect

The Government must back plans  to allow the prosecution of doctors and nurses accused of serious patient neglect to restore the public’s  confidence in the NHS, the head  of the Mid-Staffordshire inquiry, Robert Francis, has warned. 

Prince’s charity in deal with Bahrain

Prince Charles’s architecture  charity has signed a £700,000 deal with Bahrain inspired by Poundbury village. The charity will advise the Bahraini government on a sustainable housing development. MORE

State of emergency declared in north

Nigeria’s President has declared a state of emergency across three north-eastern states due to increasing attacks by Islamic extremists. President Goodluck Jonathan said Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states will receive more army troops, though he said state politicians will remain in their posts. Troops will receive orders to demolish any building they suspect of housing extremists.

Building collapse kills three people

Police said three people were killed and an unknown number were feared trapped after a four-storey building under construction collapsed yesterday in Nyagatare.  Rescuers scrambled to find survivors as 21 injured victims were being treated in hospital. The cause of the collapse is unknown.

Police investigate councillor comment

A Cornwall councillor who compared disabled children with deformed farm animals is being investigated by police. Colin Brewer said: “If (farmers) have a misshapen lamb, they get rid of it. They get rid of it. Bang!” Devon and Cornwall Police said they would “look into  the comments”.

Hensher’s ‘tour de force’ wins top prize

i columnist Philip Hensher scooped the Royal Society of Literature’s prestigious Ondaatje Prize last night for his fictionalised account of his husband’s childhood in Bangladesh. Margaret Drabble, on the judging panel, described Scenes From Early Life as “an unostentatious tour de force”.

Police officer gets stuck rescuing cat

A New York police officer who tried to help a cat stuck in a tree needed rescuing himself. The Fire Department said it received a call saying that a man attempting to get a cat out of a tree had got stuck. Firefighters used a ladder to get the man and the cat down. The New York Police Department declined to comment.

Crash driver: ‘I was fleeing zombies’

A Tennessee man who stole a  truck in California causing several accidents told investigators that he was fleeing zombies. Jerimiah Hartline yesterday pleaded guilty  to assault with a deadly weapon,  hit-and-run causing death or injury, and vehicle theft. He is facing a possible five-year prison term.

Pyongyang to allow foreign tourists

A tour company in China has obtained permission from North Korea for Westerners to make day trips into the country from the Chinese border. Gareth Johnson, of Young Pioneer Tours, said his firm had received Pyongyang’s approval to organise tours for non-Chinese foreigners to the North Korean town of Sinuiju.

Mourinho thief is jailed for 31 months

An Arsenal fan who stole £100,000 in jewellery from José Mourinho, below, has been jailed for 31 months. Jamie Filan, 32, broke into the former Chelsea manager’s London hotel room, where he  was staying with his wife and daughter earlier this year. Southwark Crown Court heard that Filan was a “professional thief”.