Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Tuesday 10 Dec 2013

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

Nelson Mandela
1. WORLD LEADERS AT MANDELA MEMORIAL
Jacob Zuma was booed and Barack Obama gave what some commentators said was his best speech in years. The memorial service for Nelson Mandela took place in torrential rain, but it didn't dampen the spirits of the 80,000 ordinary South Africans who gathered at a stadium in Johannesburg to watch it.
Business
2. COMIC RELIEF BOUGHT SHARES IN ARMS TRADE
The charity Comic Relief invested millions of pounds of donated money in shares in arms, tobacco and alcohol firms, the BBC’s Panorama programme reports. Between 2007 and 2009, the charity held more than £630,000 of shares in arms firm BAE Systems and around £300,000 in Diageo, Guiness’s parent company.
3. SAME-SEX WEDDINGS FROM 29 MARCH 2014
The first same-sex marriages will take place in England and Wales from 29 March, 2014, it has been announced. The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill was passed by parliament in July 2013, but prior to today’s announcement it was expected to come into effect in July next year.
Winter Olympics
4. FCO TOLD MCKELLEN: DON’T GO TO RUSSIA
Sir Ian McKellen says he was advised not to visit Moscow by the Foreign Office, because of Russia’s laws restricting the ‘promotion’ of homosexuality. The 74-year-old said: “They couldn't protect me from those laws … in the land of Tchaikovsky, Diaghilev, Rudolf Nureyev - gay artists whose sexuality informed their work.”
Match fixing
5. GOV CALLS SUMMIT OVER SPOT-FIXING
The Government has called a meeting with senior sports officials following allegations of match fixing in British football. The meeting is to be hosted by the Secretary of State for Media, Culture and Sport, Maria Miller, and will be attended by officials representing football, cricket, tennis, rugby union, and rugby league.
6. 15 SOLDIERS JAILED OVER 'SIT-IN'
Fifteen soldiers have been jailed after a court martial for staging a sit-in protest against two senior officers in Kenya. The men from the 1st Battalion the Yorkshire Regiment sat on the floor when ordered to stand to attention. The protest by 16 soldiers was sparked by grievances with their captain and colour sergeant.
7. UPGRADE KETAMINE TO CLASS B, SAYS PANEL
The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs has told the government that Ketamine, an anaesthetic increasingly used recreationally, should be upgraded from Class ‘C’ to Class ‘B’ because of the damage it can do to the bladder. In the last year, in England and Wales alone, around 120,000 people took the drug.
8. ANDY MURRAY TO MISS SPORTS PERSONALITY
Wimbledon champion, Andy Murray, says he won’t attend the Sports Personality of the Year award show on Sunday, despite being the hot favourite to win the 2013 title. Murray, who had surgery on his lower-back in September, will remain in Florida where he is recovering from the operation.
9. MARS ROVER FINDS EARTH-LIKE ‘LAKE’
Evidence of an “earth-like” lake which could have been teeming with life less than four billion years ago has been found on Mars by the Nasa rover Curiosity, which has been touring the planet for a year. Rock samples show signs of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen and sulphur - which could have supported microbes.
Theatre
10. HOT TICKET: LET THE RIGHT ONE IN
The National Theatre of Scotland’s stage adaptation of vampire tale Let the Right One In has opened at the Royal Court, London. This version shifts the story of a lonely teenager’s infatuation with a vampire from Stockholm to a Scottish housing estate. “Thrilling,” says the Daily Telegraph. Until 21 December.