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Edward Heath child abuse claims being investigated by five police forces
Detectives in Wiltshire, London, Jersey, Kent and Hampshire now known to be examining claims that former Tory leader was a paedophile Related: Ted Heath allegations: another public figure, yet more public unease The child abuse controversy surrounding Sir Edward Heath grew on Tuesday as it emerged that at least five police forces were running investigations into the late former prime minister. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:08:02 GMT)

Lord Coe: allegations against IAAF are declaration of war on my sport
• ‘There is nothing in our history of integrity in drug testing to warrant attack’• ‘We should not be cowering but should come out fighting’Lord Coe has defended the IAAF’s drug-testing system and said it was time to “come out fighting” to protect the reputation of the sport.In an interview with the Associated Press, Coe commented on reports alleging the IAAF had failed to act on suspicious blood tests involving hundreds of athletes over a 10-year period. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 22:23:23 GMT)

Labour must 'end the madness' over Jeremy Corbyn, says Alan Johnson
Former home secretary urges members to back Yvette Cooper because she can unite the party to win powerThe Labour party should “end the madness” of a growing surge in support for Jeremy Corbyn and elect Yvette Cooper on the grounds that she has “the intellect, the experience and the inner steel” to succeed as leader, Alan Johnson has said.Amid growing nerves among senior party figures that Corbyn is building up an apparently unstoppable momentum, Johnson described the veteran leftwinger as “cheerfully disloyal” and praised Cooper as the unity candidate. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:05:49 GMT)

Dubai builds world's largest indoor ski slope on edge of heat-baked desert
Emirate already holds the record with 400-metre slope but new run three times as long will form part of huge hotel, residential, shopping and marina complex Related: Dubai Design District: city builds its own Shoreditch from scratch in the desert Related: Foreign construction workers stage rare protest in Dubai over pay Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 01:06:56 GMT)

India train crash: rising death toll after two express services derail at bridge
Trains going opposite ways run off track at same river crossing in Madhya Pradesh state amid heavy rains and floodingMultiple deaths were reported and rescue efforts were continuing after two trains derailed within minutes of each other while crossing a river bridge in central India.One of the trains was on its way to Mumbai when the accident happened in Madhya Pradesh state, while the other was travelling in the opposite direction, the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency reported. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 03:01:46 GMT)

Kids Company: Camila Batmanghelidjh's charity to close amid financial concerns
The charity, set up in 1996 by Camila Batmanghelidjh, recently received a £3m rescue package from the governmentKids Company, the London youth work charity, is said to have told ministers it will be shutting its services on Wednesday evening in the light of new concerns about its financial management.The charity, which received £3m in a government rescue package a week ago, used part of its government grant to pay overdue staff wages, a move reportedly against the conditions of the funding. Kids Company is said to have told ministers that it will now have to close its services for vulnerable youngsters, according to a report on BBC Newsnight. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:09:47 GMT)

Diet high in leafy green vegetables may slow cognitive decline in elderly – study
Participants whose diet was rich in leafy greens, beans, berries and wholegrains were 7.5 years younger cognitively after five years than those who didn’t closely adhere to the dietA diet rich in green leafy vegetables, beans, berries, wholegrains and wine can help to slow normal brain ageing and cognitive decline, researchers said on Tuesday. Cognitive decline is a normal part of ageing but a study by scientists at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago showed that elderly adults who strictly followed the “Mind” diet were 7.5 years younger cognitively over a period of nearly five years than those who adhered the least. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 01:56:10 GMT)

MH370 crash: experts in France begin examination of Boeing 777 flaperon
Identification of aircraft part that washed up on Réunion island last week could be first clue to fate and whereabouts of missing Malaysia Airlines flightTechnical experts in France will on Wednesday begin examining a plane part that almost certainly belonged to missing flight MH370, raising hopes that some light may finally be shed on one of aviation’s darkest mysteries. Related: MH370 search: what is the 'flaperon' debris found in Réunion? Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 04:10:59 GMT)

Background music in operating theatres not very beneficial, warn experts
Research shows not only does excessive noise drown out instructions, but decision to play music can cause tension between senior and junior doctorsListening to music in the operating theatre may not be as beneficial as thought, with evidence of loud dance or drum’n’bass music being played during procedures, health experts have said.Research published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing said communication between surgeons and nurses can be impaired when music is playing. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 04:01:06 GMT)

Obesity awareness may be causing overeating, finds international study
Calls for public health rethink after research suggests people who believe they are overweight comfort-eat, leading to further weight gainPeople who think they are overweight or obese are more likely to pile on the pounds than those who are unaware that they may be heavier than doctors would advise, according to research.The findings of the study raise a difficult issue for public health experts involved in the fight against obesity. It is well-known that many people who are overweight do not realise it because so many others around them look the same size and shape. But it has been thought, until now, that people with a weight problem need to recognise the fact in order to do something about it. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:01:01 GMT)

Controversial Isis-related play cancelled two weeks before opening night
Creators of Homegrown, about radicalisation of young people, claim to have been given no prior warning and that external pressure was applied for decisionA controversial play exploring the motives behind radicalised young people joining Islamic State has been cancelled less than a fortnight before its opening night, with the creators claiming the voices of the young cast have been “silenced”. Homegrown, a National Youth Theatre (NYT) production, was closed down last Thursday, with the creators saying they were given no prior warning. Director Nadia Latif and playwright Omar El-Khairy believe the production was cancelled due to external pressures, claiming both local authorities and police got involved during the development of the play. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:10:31 GMT)

Black American lives are being erased. The victors still rewrite history | Lindy West
The policeman who killed Michael Brown gets more sympathetic coverage than the dead teenager did, and let’s not even get started on Cecil the lionThis past weekend, a massive photograph of Cecil the lion (the beloved animal whose illegal death at the hands of a dweeby American dentist inspired a global outpouring of grief) was projected on to the Empire State Building. The installation was part of a campaign to raise awareness about endangered animals – usually a fairly benign and uncontroversial cause (yes, alive lions good, dead lions bad) – that struck a sour, nearly satirical chord with many US activists. “I’m personally going to start wearing a lion costume when I leave my house so if I get shot, people will care,” writer Roxane Gay tweeted last week.As many writers of colour have already pointed out, there has been no memorial on the side of the Empire State Building for the black American victims of police violence, let alone the black American victims of white supremacy in general. In fact, there has been no memorial on remotely that scale, or with that degree of civic endorsement. There has also been no unified international uproar demanding justice for those dead Americans, nor any swift legislation to make those Americans safer (by contrast, Congress is already working on a bill to ban big-game trophy hunting). I’m as disgusted as anyone by Great White Hunter vanity killing, but it is an objective fact that police officers hunting people is a more pressing social issue than dentists hunting lions. You can and should care about both, but caring about both requires caring about both. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:01:11 GMT)

Cumberfans on Hamlet: 'I can’t imagine what it will be like to see him'
As Benedict Cumberbatch prepares for the curtain to rise on his performance of Hamlet, fans detail their extraordinary journeys to watch him play the DaneTeri Peterson, 39, a receptionist, has lived in rural Wisconsin her whole life. With the nearest theatres in Chicago or Milawaukee over a two hours drive away, Shakespeare performances are not always easy to access. But in October, she has tickets to Hamlet – almost 4,000 miles away from home.As she says, this is no ordinary Shakespeare production. This will be Benedict Cumberbatch’s Hamlet at the Barbican, a show that over the past year has become one of the most talked-about theatre productions across the world. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:45:49 GMT)

Revealed: the stone that 'translated' the Book of Mormon
Mormons believe Joseph Smith found gold plates engraved with writing in ancient Egyptian in New York and God helped him translate the text using an egg-sized stoneThe Mormon church’s push toward transparency about its roots and beliefs took another step forward with the first published pictures of a small sacred stone it believes founder Joseph Smith used to help translate a story that became the basis of the religion. Related: Mormon leaders decry same-sex marriage and 'counterfeit lifestyles' Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 01:00:26 GMT)

Kermit gets the chop as Miss Piggy initiates shock split from TV frog
After ‘thoughtful consideration and considerable squabbling’, duo announce they are no more – ahead of ABC’s reboot of the Muppets in SeptemberFirst Zayn Malik and Perrie Edwards, now another showbiz power couple have announced their conscious uncoupling: Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy.Kermit and Piggy – who broke the news in joint statements on Facebook – said the decision had been difficult and had followed “thoughtful consideration and considerable squabbling”. While Piggy was coy, Kermit was keen to make clear that it was his porcine partner who had initiated the split. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 22:46:54 GMT)

Washing dirty dishes to serving dazzling plates: Madrid chef's journey to the top
María Marte left her home in the Dominican Republic in 2003 for a by-the-hour cleaning job at a Madrid restaurant. Now she’s one of Spain’s most revered chefs Her voice competing to be heard over music blaring from the stereo, María Marte weaves her way through a dozen cooks readying their stations and heads to a stairwell behind the kitchen at Madrid’s El Club Allard restaurant. More than a decade ago, when she was working here, one of the Spanish capital’s top restaurants, as a dish washer, Marte would curl up on the red-tiled staircase for a few moments of sleep between her near constant chain of work. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 04:00:07 GMT)

The new cold war: why women are chilly at work
A study has determined that women who work in offices feel the cold – because the air conditioning is controlled by men. But there could be advantages to making the men sweat a little Age: It’s been going on, quietly, for decades.Appearance: Legions of shivering victims, huddled in corners with shawls on. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 15:33:12 GMT)

Uganda's LGBT community celebrates Pride – discreetly
Risking violence, ostracisation from their families and media threats, activists are planning the country’s biggest festival yetUganda’s annual Pride festival begins in Kampala today, with organisers promising a week-long celebration for the country’s LGTB community. But rather than a triumphant parade through the city centre, in Uganda Pride will be marked at secret locations away from the public eye. “It’s not a protest but a celebration,” says organiser Richard Lusimbo of the fourth annual Uganda Pride, which includes film screenings, a cocktail party, a (discreet) parade and a Mr and Ms Pride contest. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:00:01 GMT)

Star signings: eight standout Premier League football kits for 2015/16
Who cares which team is going to win the Premier League? It’s the style league that matters. With the new season kicking off this weekend, fashion writer Lauren Cochrane and sports writer Barney Ronay rate the most striking new kitsIt’s the summer transfer window, time to get rid of the dead wood and brighten things up with new signings. That’s not just in your team’s dressing room but in your wardrobe, too. Here is a selection of the best of the Premier League’s parade of pricey new kits that you might not be too embarrassed to wear on the terraces. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 18:37:20 GMT)

The Great British Bake Off 2015: meet the contestants – in pictures
Bake Off returns for a sixth series on 5 August. These are the 12 competitors who will be contending with their bakes and cakes to become master of the tentMel and Sue on Bake Off: “Neither of us thought it would work” Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 16:13:24 GMT)

Modern hunting images are morally repugnant. Better to look away | Jonathan Jones
The pursuit of online outrage about killing big game is a new bloodsport that attracts self-consciously unpleasant rich people who take pleasure in the tabooEveryone is complicit in a bloodsport when it comes to getting angry about images of hunters posing with slaughtered animals. That bloodsport is the pursuit of outrage, the greatest game of all in the digital age. It is so thrilling to close in on your first really horrifying image of wanton cruelty to animals, and after that you want another. The death of Cecil the lion has unleashed a riotous thirst for images of slaughter that is currently being satiated, or more likely aroused further, by a woman posing beside a “dangerous” giraffe she bravely killed. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 15:06:01 GMT)

When a brothel spills over into your mother’s garden | Lucy Mangan
The first we knew of a house of ill repute next door was the half a dozen men hurtling over the back fence when it was raidedThe brothel next door to my parents’ house has finally shut up knocking-shop. It’s been there for six or seven years. The first we knew of it was when half a dozen men came hurtling over the row of garages at the end of the garden and my mother, running, as ever, counter to what others would consider natural instinct, hurtled with equal vigour towards them to make sure they didn’t damage the roof.There have been no more police raids since then. Everybody seemed to feel that honour had been satisfied. It’s not like the place was noisy, or they left a dog barking while they went out to work. A couple with children in another flat added a bit to the fence top in the garden so the kids wouldn’t see anything by accident. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 16:39:31 GMT)

Angela Merkel's influence now extends to German slang
“Merkeln’, which means being indecisive or failing to have an opinion, is topping a poll to choose Germany’s favourite new ‘youth words’It is, perhaps, a measure of just how powerful she has become: Angela Merkel now appears to be influencing youth slang.The compilers of Germany’s most popular dictionary say that the verb “merkeln” is on track to become the most popular “youth word” of the year. Media strategists around the chancellor who may have fleetingly thought they could seize on the opportunity to encourage more young people to support the German chancellor will, however, have been quickly disappointed. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 14:49:27 GMT)

What happens when Football Manager is simulated for 1,000 years?
• A gamer simulated Football Manager for 1,000 years and published results• Blades and Burnley dominant but fallow years ahead for champions ChelseaSheffield United supporters approaching the new season with trepidation need worry no more. Nigel Adkins is about to begin his first season at the club and will set the wheels in motion for a 1,000 years of unprecedented success – that is if Football Manager is to be believed. Related: Is being addicted to Football Manager a medical condition? | Iain Macintosh Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 09:35:07 GMT)

The Diary Of A Teenage Girl: ‘a more realistic view of women and sex’
A new American indie hit explores female sexuality in a way few films would dare and has earned an 18 certificate as a result. Its director explains why mainstream cinema needs to change its ways – and fastAdmittedly, The Diary Of A Teenage Girl is never going to be an easy sell when you’re standing outside the cinema, persuading your other half how to spend the next two hours. Simply put, the story goes: 15-year-old Minnie begins drug-addled affair with mum’s 35-year-old boyfriend. Couldn’t director and screenwriter Marielle Heller have made her directorial debut a nice romcom or, at least, something a bit less sexual-abuse-y? Related: 18 certificate ruling keeps The Diary of a Teenage Girl away from teenage girls Continue reading...
(Mon, 03 Aug 2015 23:00:09 GMT)

The chances I had just aren’t there for today’s deprived young people | Gary Bell
I’d like to think other young people from deprived backgrounds like mine might follow in my footsteps into law. But they won’t – as the government has whipped away the ladder of social mobilityI was on holiday recently and found myself sharing a few drinks with my 19-year-old son and a group of friends he’d made. They were a nice bunch of youngsters, mostly privately educated, at an exciting stage of life. One of them I found particularly impressive – a young mixed-race lad called Elliott.We had plenty in common: we both came from Nottingham and had been to local comprehensive schools. Our parents had solid working-class jobs – my mother worked at the John Player cigarette factory in the city and my father was a coal miner – Elliott’s mother works for Royal Mail, while his father is a painter and decorator. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 12:59:18 GMT)

'Journalists are being slaughtered' – Mexico's problem with press freedom
Photographer Rubén Espinosa’s murder in Mexico City carries a grim message: nowhere is safe as the authorities fail to halt growing violence against the pressRubén Espinosa’s coffin was carried to the graveside under a blistering Mexico City sun, accompanied by a round of applause from his friends and colleagues – and the howling of his beloved cocker spaniel, Cosmo. As the body of the murdered photographer was carefully lowered into the ground, weeping mourners clutched each other for support – and grappled with the realisation that they could be next. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 12:28:07 GMT)

British Museum uses virtual reality to transport visitors to the bronze age
Virtual reality experience takes visitors back in time using real objects and state of the art 3D gadgetsVisitors to the British Museum are invited to walk into a 4,000-year-old roundhouse this weekend, where the fire is lit, the floor swept and some enigmatic objects lie waiting to be discovered. The museum is launching its first virtual reality weekend, inviting visitors to engage with the past not just through the real objects in the galleries but through state of the art 3D headsets, tablets, and a projection of the recreated house into a dome structure large enough for groups of five to enter. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 12:50:15 GMT)

Are plants intelligent? New book says yes
A new book, Brilliant Green, argues that not only are plants intelligent and sentient, but that we should consider their rights, especially in the midst of the Sixth Mass ExtinctionPlants are intelligent. Plants deserve rights. Plants are like the Internet – or more accurately the Internet is like plants. To most of us these statements may sound, at best, insupportable or, at worst, crazy. But a new book, Brilliant Green: the Surprising History and Science of Plant Intelligence, by plant neurobiologist (yes, plant neurobiologist), Stefano Mancuso and journalist, Alessandra Viola, makes a compelling and fascinating case not only for plant sentience and smarts, but also plant rights. For centuries Western philosophy and science largely viewed animals as unthinking automatons, simple slaves to instinct. But research in recent decades has shattered that view. We now know that not only are chimpanzees, dolphins and elephants thinking, feeling and personality-driven beings, but many others are as well. Octopi can use tools, whales sing, bees can count, crows demonstrate complex reasoning, paper wasps can recognise faces and fish can differentiate types of music. All these examples have one thing in common: they are animals with brains. But plants don’t have a brain. How can they solve problems, act intelligently or respond to stimuli without a brain? Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 08:43:05 GMT)

How we made Blind Date with Cilla Black
‘When they rejected my first theme tune, I just said: what about “Blind date, blind date – da da da da da da?”’Alan Boyd, LWT head of entertainment A standup comic called Duncan Norvelle hosted a pilot episode of Blind Date for us. I thought of Cilla for it right away, but I knew she didn’t want to take on a second show. She just wanted to do Surprise Surprise. Then, one day, I said: “Oh, by the way, I have a show you’d be lovely for, though I know you’re not interested.” She replied: “Oh, I’ve seen something I’m interested in too – this Australian show called The Perfect Match.” I said: “Funnily enough, that’s just like the show I want you to do – except the one we’ve seen is The Dating Game from America.” So there it was. What a piece of luck.She only wanted to do six episodes, though, and didn’t want to do Surprise Surprise as well. I said: “No, I’d like you to do both.” And, after some persuasion, she did. In the pilot, Duncan hadn’t been able to get the logistics, but Cilla was great at all the army-like manoeuvres – turn left here, look into that camera, introduce this now. She was in her element, a natural with the boys and the girls, hysterical from day one, and the public adored her. She wasn’t the big glamorous star, she was just normal. She was you. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 06:00:02 GMT)

England’s Steven Finn: I am sick of talking about past as only future matters
Ashes man of the moment takes the blame for his two-year loss of form but hopes the ‘unselectable’ tag is consigned to history at Trent Bridge“To be quite frank, I am sick of talking about the past,” says Steven Finn, the man of the match in England’s eight-wicket win at Edgbaston, when he went from “unselectable” to irresistible after two years out of the Test side.“That has been and gone. All I am thinking about is what is happening in the future and the fact that I have been bowling well. That’s the only thing occupying my mind at the moment.” Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 20:59:13 GMT)

Ashes 2015: mediocrity on both sides making for a wildly unpredictable series | Russell Jackson
Ahead of the fourth Test, England remain just as capable of running a hot knife through Australia’s buttery middle order as they do of capitulating themselves Throughout the early stages of this Ashes series it has been hard to escape the feeling that what we have on our hands is a pairing of mediocre Test sides bolstered by a pair of outright match-winners: Joe Root and the now-injured Jimmy Anderson for England, Steve Smith and hot-or-not Mitchell Johnson for Australia. With respect to the metronomy of Alastair Cook and Chris Rogers, neither batting line-up appears capable of arresting any significant momentum change in favour of the bowlers so even sans Anderson, England remain just as capable of running a hot knife through Australia’s buttery middle order as they do of capitulating themselves. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:24:05 GMT)

Floyd Mayweather confirms he will fight Andre Berto 12 September
• Unbeaten American aiming to extend record to 49-0• Mayweather has not fought since beating Manny Pacquiao on points in MayFloyd Mayweather has announced that he will fight the former welterweight world champion Andre Berto on 12 September at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.Mayweather, who will attempt to match Rocky Marciano’s 49-0 unbeaten record, made the announcement on social media on Tuesday. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:51:54 GMT)

Netball World Cup 2015: who are the biggest threat to hosts Australia? | Luke Williams
The Diamonds enter the tournament as clear favourites but New Zealand, England and Jamaica are the most likely contenders to stage an upset Related: Netball World Cup 2015: all you need to know about the tournament On Friday, 192 of the world’s best netballers will descend on Sydney’s Olympic Park for 10 days of competition in the Netball World Cup with Australia, the defending champions, considered strong favourites – though nobody is writing off their competitors. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 03:15:22 GMT)

England’s Stuart Lancaster gives hints over World Cup selection
• Time for tough calls over World Cup squad arrives• Head coach says Jonny May has been ‘standout performer’England may have relocated from the harsh altitude of Colorado to the gentler climes of stockbroker-belt Surrey but the heat is intensifying on those seeking fringe places in Stuart Lancaster’s 31-man World Cup squad. As many as nine players are set to be released and some talented individuals will be packing their bags on Friday.Lancaster will try his best to soften the blow but he acknowledges the time for hard decisions is fast approaching. While it is likely to be a few weeks before the head coach settles on his absolute final permutations at hooker, prop and centre, the management’s thinking in other areas is growing slightly clearer. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:06:00 GMT)

Liverpool’s Sheyi Ojo joins Wolves on loan after signing new contract
• 18-year-old winger to spend season at Molineux• Ojo scored for Liverpool in friendly win over SwindonLiverpool’s highly regarded Sheyi Ojo has joined Wolverhampton Wanderers on loan for the 2015-16 season on the same day he also signed a new long-term contract at Anfield. Related: Liverpool’s Joe Allen set to miss opening game with hamstring injury Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 22:24:50 GMT)

Real Madrid 2-0 Tottenham | Audi Cup match report
• Real Madrid 2-0 Tottenham Hotspur• Rodríguez 36, Bale 79You just knew he was going to score and when he did, it was no surprise he did not celebrate. It was surely out of respect for his former club but perhaps Gareth Bale did not want to kick Tottenham Hotspur when they were down.This was not a great way for Tottenham to limber up for the new Premier League season, which kicks off for them at Manchester United at lunchtime on Saturday, as they were convincingly beaten by Real Madrid. Then again, it was Real and the final score was hardly a disgrace. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:01:56 GMT)

Natalia Molchanova: world's 'greatest free-diver' feared dead
Molchanova was diving to a depth of 35 metres in the Mediterranean on Sunday, but she never surfaced, and friends and family believe she has diedThe woman considered one of the greatest free divers of all time is feared dead after she failed to surface after a dive off the Mediterranean island of Formentera.Natalia Molchanova was diving to a planned depth of 35 metres (115 feet) with friends on Sunday but failed to surface, her son Alexey told the New York Times. Molchanova holds 41 world records in free diving, and can hold her breath for nine minutes. In May, she dived to a depth of 71 metres in waters off Egypt. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:58:03 GMT)

Champions League qualifiers: Ajax knocked out by Rapid Vienna in thriller
• Rapid win 3-2 in Amsterdam to advance 5-4 on aggregate• Monaco defeat Young Boys; Dinamo Zagreb scrape past MoldeAjax were turfed out of the Champions League at the third qualifying round stage by Rapid Vienna, who scored three times in Amsterdam to win the second leg by the odd goal in five and advance 5-4 on aggregate.The Austrian team led 2-0 at half-time thanks to goals from Robert Beric and Louis Schaub, but a youthful Ajax, with an average age of 21, were on level terms through Arkadiusz Milik and Nemanja Gudelj. Schaub scored 13 minutes from the end, however, to send Rapid into the play-off round where they could meet Manchester United. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:45:10 GMT)

Team GB roll out the Olympic Greats to inspire Rio 2016 gold rush
• Beth Tweddle focused on helping British gymnasts hit new heights• Hoy, Redgrave, Adlington, Ainslie and Lewis to help athletesEight medal-winning Olympians have agreed to give their support to the cohort of British athletes preparing to take part in next summer’s Games in Rio, and to act as their cheerleaders in a bid to drum up the levels of public support seen at London 2012.“We’ll be working with the athletes, working with the fan club, attending roadshows, attending the kitting-out, speaking with the athletes,” explains Beth Tweddle, who won bronze on the uneven bars in London, her third and final Olympics. “Between myself and the other seven who are part of the programme, we’ve got 27 Games between us so we’ve lots of experience we can pass on.” Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:47:00 GMT)

James Guy wins historic freestyle gold as Adam Peaty sets breaststroke record
• Millfield swimmer achieves World Championship first for a British male• ‘Spurred-on’ Peaty registers 50m world record at lastJames Guy made history with gold in the 200m freestyle and Adam Peaty set a 50m breaststroke world record as British swimmers continued their charge at the world championships.Great Britain’s most successful world championships in the pool came in 2003 in Barcelona when they won eight medals but they have already secured five – with only three days of the eight-day event gone. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 14:49:03 GMT)

How the Pozzo family have fuelled Watford’s Premier League dreams
The man in charge of the Italian owner’s recruitment unit explains why the club have the players and belief to make a success of their top-flight returnIt was perhaps inevitable but certainly ironic that one of the first things that followed the arrival at Watford of the family known above all others for employing legions of scouts was the sacking of all the scouts. What use, after all, is a small-scale focus on the search for English-based bargains when you already have access to the world’s largest global scouting network?“As soon as we first heard the rumours I just felt: ‘There’s going to be mega change here,’” says Brian Greenhalgh, the club’s chief scout until the Pozzo family, already owners of Udinese in Italy and Granada in Spain, took control in 2012. “When new owners come in they either buy into what’s going on or they adapt it to a degree, or they come in and change everything. It’s my mentality to check things out – as a chief scout you tend to delve a little bit – and as soon as I saw how they operated I could see there was going to be a totally new system. We had six scouts working at the club and everybody went. Everybody.” Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 17:30:09 GMT)

Ross Moriarty’s ‘nasty edge’ puts him in line for Wales debut against Ireland
• Gloucester flanker in line for first cap in World Cup warm-up• Warren Gatland: ‘He is very explosive and has fitted in well’In a week when there have been, in the words of Warren Gatland, niggles and fights in training before Saturday’s World Cup warm-up against Ireland in Cardiff, the Wales head coach is giving a first cap to an England junior world championship winner who brings with him a “nasty edge.”The 21-year old Gloucester flanker Ross Moriarty, who played in two junior world championship finals, was born in St Helens but brought up in Swansea, where he watched his father, the former Wales back-row Paul Moriarty, play. Capable at No8 or on the blind-side, he is a player Gatland will be paying close attention to as he ponders his 31 for the World Cup. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:41:00 GMT)

Blackpool hit by suspended three-point deduction for pitch invasion
• Football League deduction suspended for two seasons• Punishment in addition to £50,000 FA fineBlackpool have been given a suspended three-point deduction for the pitch invasion that forced their Championship match with Huddersfield to be abandoned in May.Home supporters entered the field of play in the second half of the last game of the season in protest at the club’s owners, eventually forcing the game to be called off when they refused to move for over an hour. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 20:12:53 GMT)

Edin Dzeko on brink of Roma move after Manchester City agree £14m fee
• Striker scored 72 goals in 187 appearances at the Etihad Stadium• Dzeko is now set to fly to Italy to wrap up dealManchester City have agreed a £14m fee with Roma for Edin Dzeko, according to reports in Italy. The striker is understood to have already agreed personal terms with the Serie A club and will now travel to Italy to conclude a deal in the next 24 hours. Related: Premier League 2015-16 preview No9: Manchester City | Paul Wilson Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 18:34:23 GMT)

Manchester United’s Ángel Di María has medical ahead of Paris Saint-Germain move
• Argentina midfielder pictured at Aspetar sports hospital in Qatar• Di María poised to complete £44.3m move to French championsÁngel Di María’s move from Manchester United to Paris Saint-Germain moved a step closer as the Argentina winger underwent a medical in Doha on Tuesday.The Aspetar sports hospital in Qatar posted pictures on Twitter of Di María ahead of his medical. The 27-year-old was given permission to fly to Qatar for talks with PSG officials after United agreed a €63m (£44.3m) fee with the French champions for the midfielder. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 18:00:18 GMT)

IAAF denies turning blind eye to suspicious blood tests
• ‘Doping allegations are sensationalist and confusing,’ says IAAF• Governing body responds to leaking of 12,000 blood testsAllegations that the international athletics body, the IAAF, turned a blind eye to hundreds of suspicious blood tests have been strenuously denied by the organisation.A lengthy response by the IAAF to the claims by a German broadcaster and the Sunday Times said the allegations were “sensationalist and confusing”. The broadcaster, ARD, and the newspaper gained access to a database containing more than 12,000 tests from 5,000 athletes. It claimed more than 800 athletes – and a third of all medallists in endurance events at recent Olympics and World Championships – had suspicious results which were not followed up by the IAAF. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 15:10:06 GMT)

Premier League 2015-16 preview No14: Stoke City | Paul Doyle
Mark Hughes has assembled a talented squad and the quality of football should remain high. There’s a danger of Stoke becoming the new darlings of hipstersGuardian writers’ predicted position: 7th (NB: this is not necessarily Paul Doyle’s prediction but the average of our writers’ tips)Last season’s position: 9th Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:59:16 GMT)

Ashes 2015: does a Don Bradman history lesson explain how series can be seized? | Andy Bull
The teams seem so short on resolve and resource that any batsman who has the patience to make a century will, most likely, win the match for his sideAs Red Smith once wrote of Babe Ruth, “he must have admired records, since he created so many of them”. Goes double for the Don. One of Bradman’s more obscure marks is in the news again this week. There have been 14 Ashes series in which the score was 2-1 going into the fourth Test, and only once did the team trailing go on to win the series. The captain? Why even ask. Bradman. The nonpareil. That was in 1936-37, his very first series as captain. He was an unpopular pick, too, at least among some of the players. They preferred Vic Richardson for the job and let Bradman know it. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:44:00 GMT)

Sammy Jo Bell replaces injured Cathy Gannon in Shergar Cup at Ascot
• Up-and-coming rider gets chance to shine on Saturday• BHA defend interference rules after Dartmouth’s winSammy Jo Bell, one of this year’s star apprentice jockeys, will get her chance on a big stage this weekend as a late entry into the Shergar Cup, replacing the injured Cathy Gannon. Bell will join Hayley Turner and the Canadian rider Emma-Jayne Wilson in the Girls team at the Dubai Duty Free-sponsored contest at Ascot on Saturday.The 24-year-old Bell, who had next to no profile at the start of the season, has had 22 winners this year, enjoying such success that she is now in the mix for champion apprentice. She said in a recent interview that she had had to discover some “inner steel” in order to find her place in such a competitive sport. “I probably needed a harder edge, I was a little bit soft,” she told the Daily Mail. “But I am much more like I need to be now. At times this year, I cannot believe how competitive I have been. I’ve surprised myself.” Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 17:07:33 GMT)

Calum Gallagher leaves Rangers to join St Mirren on one-year deal
• St Mirren’s new striker set to face former club at Ibrox on Friday• Manager Murray praises Gallagher’s ‘technical attributes’Rangers have offloaded the striker Calum Gallagher to their Championship rivals St Mirren. The 20-year-old has signed a one-year contract, joining on what his new club describe as a “transfer arrangement”.Gallagher could now make his debut against his former club at Ibrox on Friday night. Previously he had loan spells with Alloa and East Stirling before scoring on his Rangers debut in a 2-0 League One victory over Dunfermline in March 2014. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 16:55:28 GMT)

David Squires on … the new football season
As his series of cartoons returns for the new campaign, David Squires settles in for the next 10 months … Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 09:29:10 GMT)

Stuart Lancaster: Danny Cipriani is in contention for Rugby World Cup
• Lancaster: ‘He’s here as a bona fide member of the squad’• Cipriani re-bailed until mid-November and therefore availableStuart Lancaster insists the path has been cleared for Danny Cipriani to play his way into England’s World Cup squad after he was re-bailed until November having been arrested on suspicion of drink driving.The Sale fly-half was involved in a collision with another car on 1 June and after giving a breath test he was taken to a west London police station before being released on bail until August. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 13:40:40 GMT)

Premier League 2015-16 preview No13: Southampton | Jacob Steinberg
Southampton proved all the critics wrong last season and, despite falling away at the end of the campaign, the signs are that the Saints can indeed go marching onGuardian writers’ predicted position: 10th (NB: this is not necessarily Jacob Steinberg’s prediction but the average of our writers’ tips)Last season’s position: 7th Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 07:31:07 GMT)

Is the UFC turning into Rollerball?
An omnipotent corporation pacifies the masses with a violent sport while suppressing all individuality. Is today’s UFC a case of life imitating art?“No player is greater than the game itself.”So says Bartholomew, the politically powerful executive played with patrician gravity by the great John Houseman in the 1975 film Rollerball. Bartholomew’s company is one of several that have conspired to provide sanitized comfort for the masses, with the deadly sport of Rollerball providing an outlet for pent-up bloodlust and a valuable lesson against individuality. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 08:30:05 GMT)

José Mourinho says disagreements with Abramovich in the past at Chelsea
• ‘We had some interferences and a bit of a disagreement with some ideas’• Mourinho expects usual suspects to compete for Premier League titleJosé Mourinho says his disagreements with Roman Abramovich are in the past and that he is ready to fight for his fourth Premier League title starting this weekend.In his first spell at Chelsea, starting in 2004, Mourinho won the league in his first two seasons, only to fall out with the club’s Russian owner and leave in September 2007. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 10:52:24 GMT)

How close are we to a London Jaguars NFL franchise?
Most NFL fans in the UK already have an existing team of choice, so a London franchise could be a tricky sellIn May 2013, Andrew Luck headlined an NFL UK fan forum held in a former theatre turned conference center that sits at the foot of the Thames in London. Over 4,000 fans applied for just 400 seats. The night was a rousing success as Luck fielded questions that exhibited sophistication, passion and humor. For example, a man wearing a Luck jersey cheekily asked, “How does it feel to have replaced Curtis Painter?” Luck laughed as ubiquitous NFL UK presenter and MC for the night Neil Reynolds quickly moved on. The fans’ admiration for Luck was obvious, even though the room was a far cry from a uniformed collection of Colts fans that one would find at US fan event Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 09:00:05 GMT)

Guardiola questions Schweinsteiger’s fitness after Manchester United move
• Guardiola: ‘During the last three years he was never in a good condition’• Manchester United’s £15m signing made only 82 starts in four seasonsPep Guardiola has cast a doubt on Manchester United’s new midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger by saying his former player was never fully fit over the last three seasons.The Bayern Munich manager said the 31-year-old Schweinsteiger can only be a success at the Premier League club if he can shake off his injury problems. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 07:21:39 GMT)

Assisted dying is not the answer to old age. It could be the best time of our lives | John Harris
Gill Pharoah preferred to die rather than grow old. But I don’t share this vision of ageing“I have looked after people who are old, on and off, all my life. I have always said, ‘I am not getting old. I do not think old age is fun.’ I know that I have gone just over the hill now. It is not going to start getting better.”Gill Pharaoh, a 75-year-old former palliative care nurse, said those words to the Sunday Times not long before she left her home in north London for Switzerland. Anyone who has paid even fleeting attention to the news over the past few days will know what happened next: after a final meal on the banks of the river Rhine, at the Lifecircle assisted suicide clinic in Basel, she ended her life. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 18:38:24 GMT)

Brian Adcock on the RBS sell-off – cartoon
Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:35:11 GMT)

Why Labour should end the madness and elect Yvette Cooper | Alan Johnson
Like me, Jeremy Corbyn has never had the ambition or the appetite to lead the Labour party. Nor the discipline. Labour needs a woman who can unite this great party once moreNext month will mark the centenary of Keir Hardie’s death. It’s said that, when telling his friend Sylvia Pankhurst that he planned to form a new political party, Hardie was advised to have just three policies; votes for women, chastity for men and prohibition for everyone. The chastity pledge never surfaced and prohibition disappeared from Labour’s deliberations (probably at around the time that George Brown was deputy leader).Labour was, however, to be the first political party to campaign for women’s emancipation as part of a programme set out by the 129 trade unionists (including two delegates from the Postmen’s Federation) who met in Farringdon Street, City of London, on 27 February 1900 to launch the Labour Representation Committee. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 13:45:00 GMT)

Why the National Gallery strikes could turn me Tory
This gentle temple of art has become a battleground thanks to Mark Serwotka and the PCS union. But if they really cared about ordinary people, they’d be throwing their weight about elsewhereWhose side are you on? I was hoping never to have to answer that question again. For so long, the big divisions of the British left were invisible. Not only are they here again, as blood red as they were back in the 1980s, but the demand to take sides won’t leave me alone even in the National Gallery.Seriously. I’ve never voted anything but Labour in my life. Can’t you at least let me alone when I’m looking at Titian? I have to be a socialist in the museum now? Is it blacklegging to look at Leonardo? Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 15:11:33 GMT)

The Guardian view on the RBS sell-off: the price is not right | Editorial
George Osborne is giving too much priority to his political ambitions and not enough to getting a good deal for the taxpayerIt is a chancellor of the exchequer’s inescapable job to balance the political and the economic. Throughout his career at the Treasury, George Osborne has often prioritised the former over the latter. Now he has done so again – starting the sell-off of the taxpayers’ stake in the Royal Bank of Scotland earlier, and at a lower price, than market conditions would suggest is wise.It is seven years since Labour bailed out RBS with a £45bn injection of cash, paying 502p for every share and taking a 79% holding in a bank that ministers rightly accepted was too big to fail. Without that, the financial collapse would have extended far beyond RBS and its ailing competitor Lloyds, in which the Treasury took a 43% share. Ever since, a period during which the banks have been substantially restructured, the Treasury has been eyeing the moment at which the state could begin to recoup its investment by selling off its shares. So far, so uncontroversial. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 18:21:01 GMT)

Go Set a Watchman: Harper Lee readers demanding refunds were expecting far too much | Michelle Dean
The book was always doomed to be a disappointment both for those caught up in the hype and for fans of To Kill a MockingbirdIt’s been a little under a year since I first dove into the ocean that is reporting on Nelle Harper Lee’s current situation and frankly I still feel like I’m trying to catch the surf. More than a few waves have swelled since I first asking questions, then about a controversy regarding a book someone else had written about her (The Mockingbird Next Door by Marja Mills). Obviously, the wave that came with Go Set a Watchman washed that former concern out to sea. And when I saw it rolling in this past February I began to get queasy. I’ve watched while people with greater access and more time at the New York Times, the New Yorker and elsewhere, have fished around and have pulled a wealth of questions, if few answers, from their investigations. After all that, I’m not surprised that we’re no closer to an answer. Related: US bookshop offering refunds for Go Set a Watchman Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:20:38 GMT)

Tuition fees are a consumerist fallacy. Our students deserve better | Stefan Collini
Reports that tuition fees could soon pass £10,000 per year should not come as a surprise. The whole system is inherently flawedFor the last three years, it has looked as though higher-education funding has fallen off the mainstream political agenda. The coalition had every reason to keep it out of the news, while Labour kept quiet about the issue – Ed Miliband’s suggestion that he would reduce fees from £9,000 to £6,000 smacked of desperate electoral manoeuvring. At least the Labour leadership candidates are now having to declare their hands, prompted perhaps by Jeremy Corbyn’s announcement that he would abolish the current fees.Meanwhile, reports that student fee levels are set to rise to £10,000 within a few years, thanks to George Osborne allowing them to rise in line with inflation, have triggered the usual Pavlovian responses. The government says its scheme drives up quality. Vice-chancellors say they must increase fees to stay competitive in the global market. Charities say the changes discourage those from disadvantaged backgrounds from applying to university. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:00:02 GMT)

Aid should be seen as foreign public investment, not just charity
As new players from the emerging economies enter the aid arena, the thinking that underpins much development cooperation needs to changeInternational development has reached a crucial moment in its evolution. Given the great progress in much of the world in the past decade or so, the paradigm of north-south development assistance is now outdated. All countries are engaged in contributing to global development, supporting sustainability and poverty reduction locally, nationally, regionally and globally.At the same time, the challenges faced by the world, in particular the poorer countries, are evolving and, to some extent, multiplying. The post-2015 discussions are firming up an agenda in which ending absolute poverty remains central but other concerns are also recognised, namely the planet’s environmental limits and the need to invest in greener growth. Continue reading...
(Wed, 05 Aug 2015 06:00:02 GMT)

Why camping is a passion-killer | Nell Frizzell
Seeing your new squeeze sluicing themselves down with a wet wipe is about as sexy as sticking a carrot up your nose – unless it’s a metaphor for loveThere is nothing – absolutely nothing – as fatal for a burgeoning romance than to watch a near-stranger sluice themselves down with a wet wipe. Related: camping-tips Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 12:24:02 GMT)

Public opinion doesn't matter in the Labour leadership election. I'm following my conscience and Jeremy Corbyn
Andy Burnham is a scouse Captain Scarlet, Yvette Cooper is a human parable drawn by Dr Seuss and Liz Kendall is ‘it’ in a never-ending game of Wink Murder. And people say Corbyn’s a weirdo …To win over public opinion, Labour must reflect it. Is that right? I think that’s right. I think that’s why they’re all doing this synchronised frowning at poor repellent-ebullient Jeremy Corbyn and pretending he’s a weirdo. Look, Jeremy the zealous folk singer. Jeremy the exasperated bishop. Jeremy the furious first-aider.Public opinion is a dim bully, and moderate Labour needs to be its mate so it beats someone else up instead. Is that right? I think that’s right. I think that’s why everyone now talks condescendingly about “lefties” and expresses contempt for the airy-fairy donkey-jackety nonsense lefties burble between bong tokes. Yeah, public opinion hates lefties. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 16:09:36 GMT)

The BJP’s ban on ‘porn’ sites mocks India’s democratic pretensions | Sonia Faleiro
By defying India’s supreme court Narendra Modi’s government shows its contempt for the laws of the land and the constitutional rights of othersTwo days after the Indian government blocked access to 857 allegedly pornographic websites, the speaker of the lower house of parliament – the Lok Sabha – suspended 25 MPs from the opposition Congress party.The Congress MPs had been demanding the resignation of three leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janata party (the BJP) for complicity in scams involving millions of dollars and the suspicious deaths of dozens of people. Though if the MPs, who wore black armbands, made an impact, it was only on their vocal chords. Still, they were accused of disruption and suspended from the house for five days. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 17:01:30 GMT)

14 years in jail for Libor rigging? The judge makes a persuasive case | Joshua Rozenberg
Yes, Tom Hayes was given a bigger sentence than a rapist might get – but it seems to be in keeping with sentencing guidelines and the principle of deterrenceWas 14 years in prison too harsh a sentence for Tom Hayes, the former City trader convicted yesterday of rigging the Libor interest rate?A glance at the sentencing guidelines shows that the starting point for robbery involving serious injury is eight years. An aggravated rape might start at 10 years. The worst examples of intentional grievous bodily harm have a starting point of 12 years. Why, then, did Hayes get 14 years? Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 15:48:23 GMT)

China’s schools are testing factories. Why is Britain so keen to copy them? | Simon Jenkins
Our government seems determined to move towards the Chinese style of hothousing pupils, just as China is waking up to the folly of such methodsThis evening the BBC will carry forward the great myth that Chinese education is “better” than Britain’s. A documentary comparing Chinese and British teachers in a Hampshire school will show Chinese teachers appalled at how disruptive, challenging and idle British pupils could be. That, by implication, is why Chinese children do better, far better, in international tests.All this tells us about is tests. Only exam salesmen and Whitehall officials believe this has anything to do with education. The OECD/Pisa global league tables in maths have long been discredited, most recently by the Chinese educationist, Yong Zhao. It turns out they compared results for all British and American 15-year-olds with a few highly corrupt “testing factories” in China’s richest city, Shanghai, and other urban communities in Hong Kong and Singapore. Like was in no way compared with like. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 10:43:57 GMT)

Free to dream, I’d be left of Jeremy Corbyn. But we can’t gamble the future on him | Polly Toynbee
Many of us share the Labour leadership frontrunner’s core beliefs, but tactically the best chance lies with Yvette CooperNothing about Jeremy Corbyn’s surge suggests a blip. Few at Labour HQ, busy checking credentials of new signers, think people are flocking to sign up to vote for anyone but him – some 60,000 new voters as of Monday. JC is a phenomenon.Neil Kinnock warns of “Trotskyite forces with malign intentions” and entryists from the “Telegraph right”. But evidence from overflowing Corbyn meetings pumping with passion is that these are not resurrected Militant but essentially Labour-type people who just agree with Corbyn. The atmosphere is heady – as it was when Michael Foot filled rallies to the rafters. He refused to believe he was losing badly when finding whooping support everywhere he went. All of us on the left risk the myopia of inhabiting a universe of the like-minded. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 05:00:00 GMT)

What makes us feel for Cecil the lion but not for fellow humans? | Clare Allan
The outrage at the killing of Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe contrasts sharply with our reaction to the plight of migrants in CalaisNews of the death of Cecil the lion at the hands of an American dentist has been greeted with massive outrage by ordinary people across the globe. This is unsurprising. Cecil was a magnificent creature, languorously powerful, amber-eyed, as much a part of his environment as Walter Palmer from Minnesota, with his baseball cap, his flash white teeth and his loaded crossbow, was a ludicrous eyesore upon it.Moreover, Cecil was tricked, lured from the safety of the national park, to be shot with an arrow (the killing was botched), and wander for 40 hours in pain before being finished off with a gun. His beautiful, expressive head was hacked off as a trophy. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 10:00:14 GMT)

Europe needs major investment if it is to avoid another Greece | Jacques Delors and Henrik Enderlein
A combination of more investment, reforms and greater integration, based on much stronger Franco-German cooperation, is necessary to get the euro project back on trackThe good news to take from last month’s Greek debt deal is that Greece will remain inside the euro area. At the same time, the negotiations have shown the weaknesses of the single currency. It will take time to assess the full consequences, but in the aftermath of yet another last-minute decision, we see three main dangers and three fundamental challenges.The first danger is complacency. Many in Europe have an interest in looking at Greece as an isolated special case, but the Greek crisis is indicative of more fundamental disagreements on the functioning of the euro-area. If we are honest with ourselves, two key challenges remain unanswered: how to achieve greater risk-sharing and how to achieve greater sovereignty-sharing. Minimising the consequences of the discussion with Greece would be paramount to not taking up those challenges. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 14:24:26 GMT)

Adoptees should be able to annul their relationship with their adoptive parents | Kaye Pearse
Adults deserve the right to decide whether or not to honor the contract that binds them to an adoptive familyLike approximately 5 million other Americans, I’m adopted. As a child, my biological parents gave me up to other people to raise. The subject of the contract between my adoptive parents and the state – me – didn’t agree to anything. I had no more say in the matter than my house did when I signed a contract to buy it. Still, the public perception is that adoption is always a good thing – that it’s always in the best interest of the child, and that everyone lives happily ever after. But many adoptions don’t work out for a number of reasons: a mismatch of personalities, parental inability to love someone else’s child, outright dislike of the child by one or both parents. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:15:15 GMT)

Women in prostitution won’t be protected by Amnesty’s plan | Julie Bindel
The organisation’s flawed decriminalisation proposals will instead protect those who profit from the sale of women working in the sex tradeFor the majority of people, the controversy surrounding Amnesty International and its proposed prostitution policy is a non-story. This is for the simple reason that most will assume that decriminalisation means not arresting the women. When Amnesty promotes the notion that the decriminalisation of sex workers will protect their human rights, they fail to explain that this would apply to all those whose business is associated with the sex trade: pimps, brothel-owners, pornographers, and others who profit from the sale of women.A number of survivors who have left the sex trade have spoken about how they survived while still involved, which includes insisting to themselves and to others that they were making a free and happy choice to sell sex. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 12:04:29 GMT)

Is creating a new nation for the world's refugees a good idea?
A property billionaire is proposing to buy land to house the world’s refugees. Migration academic Alexander Betts says it’s not as outlandish as it soundsTwo weeks ago real estate millionaire Jason Buzi launched his idea for a “Refuge Nation” in the global media. The basic premise is not new: to buy an under-populated area of land somewhere in the world and turn it into a territory for the world’s refugees to begin a new life. It combines the historic precedent of the origins of Buzi’s native Israel coupled with the visionary idealism of his Silicon Valley heritage. He argues that in a time of increasing need for refugee protection but declining political tolerance of refugees, radical solutions are needed. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:33:01 GMT)

Iraq inquiry: Cameron to demand Chilcot name a publication date
The prime minister, who is losing patience with report delays, will tell Sir John Chilcot he must set out a timetable for its completionAn impatient David Cameron will demand Sir John Chilcot names the date by which his report into the British invasion of Iraq will be ready for publication.The prime minister is expected to tell Chilcot he wants to see the report as soon as possible. “Right now I want a timetable,” he told journalists. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:00:13 GMT)

UK hauliers face fines over stowaway migrants – even if they alert police
Lorry driver who called police was handed £19,500 fine after 13 people were found on board, meaning there is no incentive for drivers to inform authoritiesHauliers have little incentive to hand over migrants they may find stowed away in their vehicles because of hefty fines imposed by UK Border Force, industry figures have said.In one case, a lorry driver was issued with a £19,500 fine, despite calling police when he discovered around a dozen people inside his trailer while driving on the M25. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:00:01 GMT)

Volunteers and drones to survey sites at risk on British coast
Project will evaluate 5,600 miles of English coastline, where some 70,000 archaeological sites are threatened by changing sea levels or coastal erosion A small army of volunteers, backed by drone technology, is being recruited to record and monitor the longest archaeological site in Britain: 5,600 miles of English coastline and tidal foreshore containing some 70,000 sites at risk of being destroyed by changing sea levels or coastal erosion.The drones are being sent in as the safest and quickest way to survey large sites where there is little more than an hour of working time between tides. Continue reading...
(Mon, 03 Aug 2015 17:35:07 GMT)

NHS patients may face widescale charges, warns financial thinktank
Health budget must rise, or patient fees increase and services diminish, public finance institute warns ministers in bleak assessment of ‘short-term’ pledgesMinisters will have to consider charging patients for seeing a GP, attending A&E, and using the food, power and water of hospitals, unless better long-term solutions for funding the NHS can be found, public finance experts have warned.Contributions towards the cost of treatments and patients taking out health insurance are among other options that must be on the table if the comprehensive spending review in November fails to address the issue, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (Cipfa) says in a briefing. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:41:30 GMT)

Shadowy Chinese officials try to ground festival’s Tibet balloon
A hot air balloon bearing the Tibetan flag is due to soar over Bristol this week, but people claiming to represent the Chinese embassy want to see it bannedAt nearly 100ft high the Tibet balloon is arguably the largest Tibetan flag in the world. But as the unique hot air balloon prepares to soar over Bristol this week, Chinese consternation over its controversial, eye-catching design appears to be also rising.Mysterious individuals purporting to be Chinese embassy officials have made three attempts to ground the balloon across Europe – in Spain, France and the UK – since it was first launched four weeks ago. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:36:24 GMT)

Heathrow power cut leaves thousands having to fly without luggage
Baggage system at London airport incapacitated after second incident at Terminal 5 within a month which has separated passengers from their luggageThousands of holidaymakers are believed to be without their luggage after a power failure at Heathrow airport disabled the electronic baggage systems.The airport said it was working hard to reunite passengers with their bags as quickly as possible, after the second incident in the space of about a month that left many passing through Terminal 5 unable to fly with their suitcases. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 21:59:14 GMT)

Councils allowed to relax Sunday trade laws to promote 'thriving high streets'
Mayors and councils to decide which areas are free from current law, which stops shops more than 3,000 sq ft opening more than six hours on a SundayMayors and local councils are to be given new powers to relax Sunday trading laws for high street stores to allow them to compete with large out-of-town shopping centres and online retailers.Under government plans to allow high streets to “grow and thrive”, councils will be given powers to zone areas where Sunday trading laws could be relaxed. The changes would mean that a local council could declare that shops on a designated high street could be allowed to operate under more relaxed hours while out-of-town shopping centres with fewer local ties could face restrictions. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:01:01 GMT)

UK tea sales fall by more than 6% over past five years
Increasing popularity of coffee takes its toll, with sales of ordinary teabags falling from £491m in 2012 to £425m in 2014, according to latest figuresTrouble is brewing for the traditional British cuppa, a report has warned, with sales falling by more than 6% over the past five years. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:01:01 GMT)

Six in court in connection with murder of Bristol teenager Becky Watts
Stepbrother Nathan Matthews and his girlfriend Shauna Hoare face murder charges among others, while four others charged with assisting an offenderSix people have appeared in court charged in connection with the murder of teenager Becky Watts. Becky, 16, vanished from her family home in Crown Hill, Bristol, on 19 February and was reported missing the following day. Police launched a huge search, which led to her remains being discovered at a house in Barton Hill, Bristol, on 2 March. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 18:24:12 GMT)

More homeless women use heroin and cocaine than men, study finds
Research of more than 3,000 people experiencing homelessness also found greater number of women lived with mental health difficultiesDependency on heroin and cocaine is more prevalent among homeless women than men, according to research.A third of homeless women reported having used heroin in the last month, compared with 28% of men, while 31% of women had taken cocaine or crack cocaine compared with 29% of men. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 23:01:01 GMT)

New Rolls-Royce investors claim 'good directors should challenge forceful CEO'
Quote features on ValueAct Capital’s website, who own more than 5% of engine firm, in a message sure to attract attention of new chief executive Warren EastIf Warren East, the new chief executive of Rolls-Royce, wants to sleep well at night, he should probably avoid reading one of the two rotating quotations on the front of the website of ValueAct Capital, the San Francisco-based activist hedge fund that recently unveiled a stake in the British aircraft engine maker.It comes from the legendary investor Warren Buffett, and is a warning to any chief executive in charge of an under-performing company. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 22:04:48 GMT)

Cambridge University revises guidelines for handling claims of sexual assault
Victims can now formally report allegations of sexual violence for the first time in move welcomed by student body and lawyersCambridge University has revised its disciplinary guidelines on reporting sexual assault and harassment, following criticism over its failure to protect students from sexual violence.The new policy, which would allow victims to formally report allegations of sexual violence to the university for the first time, was welcomed by the National Union of Students (NUS) and by lawyers who believe the university’s previous guidelines to be unlawful. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:23:48 GMT)

SFO chief says more Libor charges on the way after Tom Hayes conviction
David Green says the 14-year sentence handed to former trader is ‘part punishment, part deterrent’More criminal charges are to be brought against individuals suspected of rigging Libor following the conviction of Tom Hayes, according to the head of the Serious Fraud Office.David Green, the director of the fraud-busting agency, told the Wall Street Journal that the 14-year jail term handed down to Hayes would “send a strong deterrent message” to others considering rigging benchmark rates. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 19:06:21 GMT)

English actor to play Scotland's tragic hero Bonnie Prince Charlie
Actor Jamie Bacon and the Young Pretender have something in common: neither had previously visited ScotlandAn English actor who has never visited Scotland has been given the lead role of Bonnie Prince Charlie in a new Scottish-produced film about the Young Pretender.Jamie Bacon, whose film experience is so far limited to small roles in little known British indies, has been cast in The Great Getaway, which will follow the prince’s escape across the Western Isles after the failed Jacobite rising of 1745. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:27:51 GMT)

Deal to build UK nuclear plant should be finalised within weeks
Ministers and EDF have agreed on controversial £25bn development of Hinkley Point C, with most of upfront costs provided by Chinese companiesA £25bn contract to build the UK’s first new nuclear power plant in 25 years is expected to be signed within weeks.Ministers in the Department of Energy and Climate Change have reached an agreement with the French energy company EDF to develop Hinkley Point C, near Bridgwater in Somerset, and are ready to approve the project after parliament’s summer recess. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 17:16:46 GMT)

Coal company threatens to sue Welsh borough if mine permit is denied
Miller Argent warns it intends to recover all application costs if Caerphilly council blocks its plans for controversial opencast mineA coal company is threatening to sue one of the most deprived boroughs in Wales for “substantial” costs if councillors refuse permission for a giant opencast coal mine. In June, councillors on Caerphilly county borough council’s planning committee unanimously rejected a recommendation by their planning officers to allow Miller Argent to exploit 6m tonnes of coal at Nant Llesg, near Rhymney, but deferred a final decision until Wednesday. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 17:55:29 GMT)

George Osborne overtakes Boris Johnson as favourite to lead Tories
Poll of Conservative party members sees the chancellor leapfrog the London mayor as favourite to replace David CameronGeorge Osborne has moved in front of Boris Johnson for the first time to become favourite among Conservative members to be the next leader of the party, according to a poll.The latest monthly poll by the website Conservative Home shows the chancellor ahead of the London mayor, with nearly one in three (31%) of the over 700 members questioned saying they wanted Osborne to replace David Cameron when he steps down. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 14:41:47 GMT)

Support cut-off for refused asylum seekers may affect 2,900 families in UK
Home Office ministers calculate savings of £49m a year in move to withdraw state pay-outs of £36.95 a week to rejected applicantsAt least 2,900 asylum seeker families who have exhausted all their appeal rights to stay in Britain will each year have to leave the country within 28 days, or face destitution, under hardline plans on asylum support published by Home Office ministers on Tuesday.An official consultation paper and impact assessment estimates that as much as £49m a year could be saved by withdrawing support of £36.95 a week from refused asylum seekers. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 15:25:04 GMT)

'Out of touch' team Miliband couldn't find minimum wage earner for event
Senior adviser Arnie Graf says no member of Labour leadership could locate worker for campaign event as party geared up for general electionEd Miliband’s team was so out of touch that it struggled to find a single person earning the minimum wage to appear at a campaign event as the party geared up for the general election, a former senior adviser has revealed.In an article for the website Labour List, Arnie Graf – a US community organiser who was a mentor to Barack Obama and advised Labour between 2011 and 2013 – says he was enlisted to help find a minimum wage worker to speak to the former Labour leader at an event that the media had been invited to in autumn 2013. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:47:34 GMT)

Mark Duggan: mother of man shot dead by police in 2011 calls for urgent inquiry
Call for new inquiry comes as demonstrators prepare to march to Tottenham police station close to where Duggan was shot by police four years agoThe mother of Mark Duggan, whose fatal shooting by police led to the 2011 London riots, is calling for an urgent inquiry by the home secretary into the events that led to her son’s death four years ago.Demonstrators are due to march to Tottenham police station later on Tuesday close to where Duggan was shot by police on 4 August 2011, shortly after collecting a firearm from gun supplier Kevin Hutchinson-Foster. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:39:03 GMT)

Transatlantic yachtsman Philip Walwyn dies during attempt at 17th crossing
Tributes paid to 68-year-old ‘legend of sailing world’ who was pulled from the water off the Cornish coastA yachtsman attempting his 17th transatlantic crossing has been pronounced dead after he was found in the sea off the Cornish coast.The alarm was raised after Philip Walwyn’s 40ft boat was found unmanned in the harbour at Coverack Cove. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 14:40:38 GMT)

RBS sell-off: George Osborne defends £1bn loss
Hedge funds snap up 60% of first tranche of shares as critics brand UK government’s share sale as ‘short-changing the taxpayer’George Osborne has tried to justify a £1bn loss on the first sale of shares in Royal Bank of Scotland in the face of criticism from politicians and City analysts by saying it was the right thing to do for the British taxpayer.The chancellor sanctioned the first sale of the stake in RBS, announced on Monday night, to cut the taxpayer shareholding from 79% to just below 73%. Slightly more shares than expected were sold after the stock market closed on Monday, crystallising a loss for the taxpayer after £45bn was ploughed into the bank to rescue it amid the financial crisis of 2008-2009. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 17:27:27 GMT)

NHS told to fill only essential vacancies due to 'almost unprecedented' finances
Health service regulator Monitor warns that current plans are ‘quite simply unaffordable’, as Labour attacks evidence of deteriorating NHS financesNHS trusts have been told by Monitor, the health service regulator, to fill vacancies “only where essential” as it warned that current financial plans are “quite simply unaffordable”. Continue reading...
(Tue, 04 Aug 2015 06:54:33 GMT)

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