The News Matrix: Wednesday 28 March 2012


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Tory donor's plans backed by Cameron

A major donor to the Conservatives proposed the dilution of workplace rights in a report which won the backing of David Cameron, it has emerged. Adrian Beecroft, who has given £593,000 to the Tories, recommended that companies be allowed to sack unproductive workers at will. MORE

No let-up in outrage over Trayvon case

The case of the 17-year-old African American shot in Florida last month continued to torment the United States yesterday. The victim's parents attended hearings on hate crimes in Washington and outrage erupted in New Orleans over comments on the case made by a police officer. MORE

Judge to take former minister to court

Former Cabinet minister Peter Hain faces contempt of court proceedings over criticisms of a judge in his memoir. Attorney General for Northern Ireland John Larkin has been granted leave to prosecute Mr Hain.

British man held as terror suspect

A British man has been arrested in the Somali capital Mogadishu over suspected links to the Islamist terrorist group Al-Shabaab. The man, named as Cleve Everton Dennis, was apprehended at Mogadishu airport. A spokesman for the Foreign Office said it was looking into the arrest.

Fighting continues despite peace plan

Fears of the conflict in Syria spilling into neighbouring countries were heightened yesterday as residents of a border village said President Bashar al-Assad's troops had crossed into Lebanon. The fighting came despite the UN saying Syria had agreed to accept Kofi Annan's peace plan. MORE

Slow response to PIP breast implant scare

Britain's medicines regulator failed to exercise proper vigilance over the PIP breast implant scandal which has left thousands of women fearing for their safety, a committee of MPS says today. The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency was slow to respond to the unfolding scandal last December, the Commons Health Select Committee said. MORE

Obama backtracks over 'election' gaffe

US President Barack Obama had to engage in some damage limitation after comments he made to Russia's leader were picked up by an open microphone. In a conversation which both men thought was private, Mr Obama told outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev he would have more room to negotiate over US plans for a missile defence shield in Europe after the November presidential election. MORE

Exclusion zone set around leaking well

It could take six months for engineers to drill a relief well to the leaking gas field beneath the offshore platform in the North Sea that was evacuated after toxic gas reached dangerous levels. A two-mile exclusion zone for shipping has been imposed around the Elgin Well Head Platform 150 miles off the coast of Aberdeen.

Woman kills herself on Facebook

A woman killed herself by inhaling poisonous fumes while chatting on Facebook with friends, none of whom alerted authorities. Claire Lin killed herself in Taiwan on her 31st birthday. Her last Facebook entries show her chatting with nine friends, alerting them to her gradual asphyxiation.

Part of Einstein's brain to go on show

Part of the brain of Albert Einstein, the scientist considered one of the most striking intellects in human history, is going on display for the first time in the UK. Following his death at the age of 76 in 1955, Einstein's brain was divided into sections, two of which are going on show at the Wellcome Collection.

Ethnic clashes see death toll rise to 25

Clashes between gunmen from the Sabha and rival Tibu ethnic groups in Libya raged for a third day yesterday. A doctor at the regional hospital said the death toll had risen to 25, highlighting the challenges the government faces in imposing its authority over the country. MORE

Face transplant man starts shaving

A 37-year-old US man injured in a 1997 gun accident has been given a new face, teeth, tongue and jaw in what doctors say is the most extensive face transplant ever performed. University of Maryland Medical Centre officials said yesterday that Richard Lee Norris is recovering well after last week's surgery and is already brushing his teeth and shaving.