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The News Matrix: Wednesday 9 October 2013


Paralympian ‘denied appropriate house’

Housing association chiefs have been asked to “justify their actions” after Paralympic gold medallist David Weir was refused accommodation that caters to his physical needs. The wheelchair racer, who won four gold medals in the 2012 Paralympic Games, is in social  housing due to his income largely comprising sponsorship and  appearance fees.

IMF warns against debt default

The government shutdown appeared no closer to being resolved as the White House refused to discuss conditions on raising the debt ceiling even if a failure to do so might push the nation towards default. The IMF repeated a warning that a default would be disastrous.

Money a top concern of pensioners

People over aged 55 are more worried about having enough money to live on than spending their retirement alone. Over a quarter of older people surveyed said that financial stability was most important to them, with only good health coming ahead of this on their priority list.

Lampedusa tragedy: Man facing charges 

A Tunisian man, 35-year-old Bensalem Khaled, who police believe to be responsible for last week’s migrant disaster in Lampedusa in which more than 300 refugees died may face charges of multiple manslaughter, illegal immigration and causing a shipwreck. MORE

EDL leader leaves party he founded

English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson has announced his intention to set up a new anti-Islamist movement after stepping down from the party he founded because it is too extreme. The 30-year-old said he “acknowledged the dangers of far-right extremism”. MORE

Netanyahu mocked over jeans claims

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has drawn ridicule from young Iranians after he suggested jeans were banned there. Dozens posted pictures of themselves on Twitter wearing jeans. MORE

‘Naughty cupboard’ headteacher quits

A primary school headteacher who was suspended following allegations her staff sent disobedient pupils to a “naughty cupboard” has quit after 32 years in the profession. Catherine Woodall, 62, and six colleagues were sent home after claims children were made to sit in a small, windowless room as a punishment.

Muslim Brotherhood backers demonstrate

Hundreds of Muslim Brotherhood supporters chanted “down with the military government” outside Cairo University yesterday, defying the army-backed authorities despite deadly clashes two days earlier. Supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsi had urged university students to protest against the army.

Passenger forced to land light aircraft

A passenger was reportedly forced to land a light aircraft at Humberside airport after a pilot fell ill at the controls. Control tower officials reportedly used flight tutors to give instructions to the passenger, who brought the plane down successfully on the third attempt just before 8pm last night.

Official sacked over big spend on big day

China sacked an official for “extravagant waste” after he spent 1.6m yuan (£163,000) on a three-day wedding for his son, the latest move in a crackdown on profligate lifestyles. Ma Linxiang, a deputy village chief from the Beijing suburb of Qingheying, hosted the 250-table wedding at a convention centre last week.

Hunt for Ground  Zero parachutists

Police in New York are searching for two men who appear to have parachuted on to a street near Ground Zero before dawn on Monday and disappeared. Two men wearing black suits and black helmets were spotted by a security camera landing in a street near Goldman Sachs’ lower Manhattan headquarters.

Chocolate prices could soar by a third

Santa might revert to putting tangerines in stockings as the rise in the price of cocoa butter could see the price of chocolate soar by up to a third by Christmas. Experts said as much as 21p could be added to the price of every 100g of milk chocolate. The cost of making chocolate rose by 33 per cent in the past year.

Spoon appeal for  Uri Geller’s gorilla

Uri Geller has commissioned The British Ironwork Centre in Oswestry to build a sculpture of a gorilla made from 5,000 spoons. Geller will display the 3.6m (12ft) tall primate in his garden in Sonning-on-Thames, Berkshire. The iron-workers are calling on the public to donate spare spoons to the project.