- 1. BANKING: COMMONS DEBATE GETS NASTY
- 2. ARSENAL SPLIT OVER VAN PERSIE SNUB
- 3. BRITISH IN FRANCE TO FACE PUNITIVE TAX
- 4. ARMY TO LOSE 17 UNITS IN CUTBACKS
- 5. M6 TERROR SCARE CAUSES TRAFFIC CHAOS
- 6. INJURY PUTS BOLT OUT OF WARM-UP
- 7. POISON INQUIRY: PLAN TO EXHUME ARAFAT
- 8. FRENCH CEO PROBED OVER 30 SUICIDES
- 9. THE SHARD OPENS WITH LASER SHOW
- 10. HOT TICKET: ASHTON BALLET TRIO
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1. BANKING: COMMONS DEBATE GETS NASTY
The Commons debate on Labour's motion to hold a judge-led inquiry into the banking industry descended into bitter recrimination as Ed Balls repeatedly challenged Chancellor Osborne to withdraw his allegations in The Spectator magazine that Balls had been involved in directing Barclay's Libor rate manipulation.
2. ARSENAL SPLIT OVER VAN PERSIE SNUB
Alisher Usmanov, whose 29% stake makes him the second largest shareholder in Arsenal FC, has attacked the board for its "lack of investment" following striker Robin van Persie’s refusal to renew his contract. "Yet again we are faced with losing our true marquee player because we cannot give confidence we can win trophies."
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3. BRITISH IN FRANCE TO FACE PUNITIVE TAX
British owners of holiday homes in France face punitive tax rises under the new Socialist government, with rates announced yesterday rising from 20 to 35.5 per cent on rental income and from 19 to 34.5 per cent on sales. About 200,000 Britons own second homes in France. A Treasury spokesman said any tax breaching EU single market laws would be challenged.
4. ARMY TO LOSE 17 UNITS IN CUTBACKS
Seventeen units of the British Army, including five battalions, will be scrapped as part of a major cutback announced today by Defence Secretary Philip Hammond. Regular soldiers will be cut from 102,000 to 82,000 but the number of reservists will double to 30,000. Hammond admitted Army morale was "fragile".
5. M6 TERROR SCARE CAUSES TRAFFIC CHAOS
A terror scare on the M6 caused traffic chaos before the incident turned out to be a false alarm. Police and the Army launched a massive response after a coach passenger reported seeing someone handling a smoking liquid. All 48 passengers were search individually before the all-clear was given.
6. INJURY PUTS BOLT OUT OF WARM-UP
Sprinter Usain Bolt has pulled out of his final race before the Olympics due to a "light" injury, triggering new concerns over his readiness for London 2012. The double Olympic champion, who suffered shock back-to-back losses last weekend, withdrew from the 200m in Monaco to ensure "sufficient time for treatment" before the Games.
7. POISON INQUIRY: PLAN TO EXHUME ARAFAT
Palestinian officials who believe Yasser Arafat might have been poisoned by radioactive polonium-210 in an Israeli plot said that his body could be exhumed for further testing with the go-ahead from his widow. Swiss scientists told al-Jazeera TV that the poison was found on his belongings, including his signature keffiyeh.
8. FRENCH CEO PROBED OVER 30 SUICIDES
French magistrates have charged Didier Lombard, the former chief executive of France Telecom, with harassment in relation to the suicides of more than 30 employees, according to a report from the Reuters news agency. The deaths happened in 2008 - 2009 as Lombard ordered mass redundancies in an efficiency drive. Many left notes blaming management pressure.
9. THE SHARD OPENS WITH LASER SHOW
Europe's tallest building will be officially unveiled tonight with a spectacular show of lasers and seachlights. The Shard, designed by the Italian Renzo Piano and built on the Thames at Southwark, stands more than 1000ft high. Its 72 floors will eventually house offices, apartments, a luxury hotel and restaurants.
10. HOT TICKET: ASHTON BALLET TRIO
The Royal Ballet's triple-bill tribute to its founding choreographer Frederick Ashton has opened at the Royal Opera House. It features Ashton's Birthday Offering, created for the company's 1956 Silver Jubilee, A Month in The Country, based on a Turgenev play and the Russian masterpiece Les Noces. "Inspiring," says The Guardian.
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