Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Wednesday 27 Feb 2013

The Week’s super-quick catch-up on the main news talking points, available from 8am daily

World News
1. N-BOMB: 'IRAN TRYING TO MAKE PLUTONIUM'
Iran is not only seeking to enrich uranium – it is possibly developing a second path to nuclear weapons capability by producing plutonium, the Daily Telegraph claims. The paper has obtained satellite images showing a cloud of steam coming out of a plant at Arak, indicating the use of 'heavy water' needed to operate a nuclear reactor that can produce plutonium.
Rennard scandal
2. NICK CLEGG HITS OUT AT PRESS 'DETECTIVES'
Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg yesterday attacked journalists who have exposed claims of sexual impropriety against Lord Rennard as "self-appointed detectives". The Daily Mail responded: "It's called a free press for a reason, Mr Clegg". Former Lib Dem MP Sandra Gidley says she warned Clegg about the Rennard allegations when he became party leader in 2007.
Europe
3. THREE PEOPLE DEAD IN SWISS SHOOTING
Three people are reported to have died today in a shooting at a wood processing plant in the town of Menznau in Switzerland. The shooting began in the canteen at 8 am UK time. Switzerland has a high rate of gun ownership, because men are able to keep their weapons after military service.
Politics
4. PM RAISES O'FARRELL QUESTION IN HOUSE
David Cameron said in the Commons today that it was "staggering" that John O'Farrell was allowed to stand for Labour in the Eastleigh by-election after writing that that he felt "a surge of excitement" after the 1984 Brighton bomb at the "nearness" of Margaret Thatcher's demise and "disappointment that such a chance had been missed". O'Farrell said it "a fleeting bad thought" written 15 years ago.
5. 'DOVE' CHUCK HAGEL GETS PENTAGON
Former Republican senator Chuck Hagel, considered a 'dove' because he decries the wasting of life in unnecessary wars, and who has criticised the power of the Israeli lobby, was confirmed last night as President Obama's new Defence Secretary. He will take charge of the Pentagon despite opposition from the right wing of his own party.
Oscar Pistorius
6. PISTORIUS ACCUSED OF 'PR STUNT' SERVICE
Oscar Pistorius, on bail awaiting trial for murder, has been accused of attempting to alter public perception by letting it be known that he was holding a private memorial service for his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. Details of the service were "leaked", giving his PR agency the chance to issue a statement saying he remains in deep mourning.
7. BALLOON SURVIVOR JUMPED TO SAFETY
The British man who survived yesterday's hot air balloon disaster in Luxor escaped by jumping from the cradle as it caught fire. Michael Rennie from Perth is recovering in a Cairo hospital. His wife Yvonne was among the 19 who died in the blaze, some of them jumping from 1,000ft to their deaths. All balloon flights have been cancelled for safety checks.
Asia Pacific
8. NEW ZEALAND POLICE SHOOT AT KILLER SHARK
Beaches around the New Zealand city of Auckland have been closed after a swimmer was killed in a shark attack. Police fired guns at the four-metre long great white after being alerted by fishermen and although the shark disappeared they could not save 47-year-old film maker Adam Strange.
Fashion
9. LILY ALLEN MAKES PARIS COMEBACK
Pop star Lily Allen, now using her married name Cooper, who quit singing in 2009 to get married and have two babies, has given her first solo performance in four years. She sang her 2006 hit 'Smile' during the Etam lingerie show at Paris Fashion Week yesterday, after tweeting fans to says: "Still know the words to Smile, which is good".
Theatre
10. HOT TICKET: MCAVOY'S 'MAD MAX' MACBETH
Jamie Lloyd's new production of Shakespeare's 'Macbeth' has opened at Trafalgar Studios, London. 'X-Men' star James McAvoy appears as Scottish lord Macbeth, who embarks on a murderous path to fulfil his ambitions for power in a post-apocalypse world. Claire Foy is Lady Macbeth. "Gripping", says The Independent. Until 27 April.