Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Monday 19 Nov 2012
GAZA: ISRAELI BOMBINGS CONTINUE
The death toll in Gaza has continued to rise today despite calls from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon for an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. Dozens of sites in Gaza were targeted including a tower block that houses international media organisations. More than 90 Palestinians have died since the Israeli bombing campaign began.
ABU QATADA TO SUE FOR 'UNLAWFUL JAILING'
The extremist cleric Abu Qatada, released from jail last week after a judge blocked his deportation to Jordan, has told his brother he intends to sue the British government for £10m for "unlawful detention". Qatada has spent nearly seven years behind bars. He and his family live on state handouts of £1,000 a month, according to the Daily Mail.
ED MILIBAND WARNS AGAINST LEAVING EU
Ed Miliband has warned business leaders at the CBI conference that Britain is in danger of "sleepwalking" out of the EU, leaving the country "voiceless and powerless". Tory Europhile, Ken Clarke, also warned on the Today programme that it would be a "disaster" if the UK quit Europe.
LORD MCALPINE SUES ITV FOR £500,000
Lord McAlpine, the former Tory party treasurer, is to start legal proceedings today against ITV for £500,000 for broadcasting false allegations linking him to a paedophile ring in north Wales. He says they revealed his name when This Morning host Phillip Schofield handed a list of suspects to David Cameron on camera. ITV has apologised for "a misjudged camera angle".
PRISONERS FREED AS OBAMA VISITS BURMA
Burma – or Myanmar – released 44 prisoners today in an amnesty coinciding with Barack Obama’s visit to the country. According to French news agency AFP, the pardons have been confirmed by a senior member of Aung San Suu Kyi's opposition National League for Democracy party, who said another 12 had been released on Sunday.
BRITAIN TOPS 'SOFT POWER' TABLE
Britain has been named the world's most influential nation when it comes to 'soft power' by Monocle magazine. Britain knocked the US off the top of the annual table thanks to the success of the Olympics and its other cultural exports like James Bond. The survey measures how countries use 'the rules of attraction', rather than intimidation or payment, to build influence.
INDIA BEAT ENGLAND IN FIRST TEST
England have lost the first cricket Test to India in Ahmedabad by nine wickets. The resistance of Alastair Cook and Matt Prior was broken early on the final day and England were bowled out for 406 in their second innings. That left India needing just 77 runs to win and they cruised to victory losing only the wicket of Virender Sehwag.
MARK CAVENDISH KNOCKED OFF HIS BIKE
Mark Cavendish has become the latest top British cyclist to be knocked off his bike. The Manx rider crashed while training in Italy. He revealed on Twitter that he bruised his arm when the car in front of him slammed on its breaks. Two weeks ago Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins collided with a van, and coach Shane Sutton was knocked unconscious in a separate crash.
COMET TO SHED ANOTHER 735 JOBS
Electrical retailer Comet, which went into administration earlier this month, is to shed another 735 jobs and effectively close down its home delivery network. The latest cuts mean that almost 2,000 workers could lose their jobs. Closing down sales have already begun at 27 of its 236 stores and 14 more are earmarked to shut.
HOT TICKET: ROYAL OPERA ROMANCE
A new production of Gaetano Donizetti's popular comic opera 'L'Elisir d'Amore' at the Royal Opera House has received strong reviews. French director Laurent Pelly has moved the story of an impoverished villager falling for a wealthy landowner to 1950s rural Italy. "A sparkling success", says The Independent. Until 7 December.