Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Sunday 7 Feb 2016

1. Defiant North Korea launches long-range rocket

North Korea has launched a long-range rocket carrying what it has said is a satellite. Critics say the move is a test of banned missile technology. The rocket took off at around 9am Pyongyang time from the North's west coast, according to South Korea's defence ministry. The UN Security Council prohibits North Korea from nuclear and ballistic missile activity.

2. Maggie Thatcher 'would have voted yes to EU'

Margaret Thatcher would have voted ‘yes’ in the EU referendum, according to one of her closest advisers. Lord Powell, a key member of her inner circle as PM, claims she would have set aside her inherent Euroscepticism to renegotiate the UK’s relationship with the EU in the same way as David Cameron. The claim marks a dramatic chapter in Tory party’s debate over Europe.

3. Swine flu is 'threatening Islamic State'

Could swine flu kill off Islamic State? That is the question being asked today, after residents living under the reign of IS reported a "mysterious epidemic" sweeping through the region. A human rights monitor group revealed the outbreak had infected "dozens of civilians in the countryside of Raqqa", where the terror group has set up its headquarters.

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4. 'Shocking' UK stillborn statistics revealed

More than 3,500 babies are stillborn in Britain every year, more per head than in Poland, Croatia and Estonia. The charity Sands found there were 3,564 stillbirths in the UK in 2014, the latest figures available, and that the stillbirth rate of 4.6 per 1,000 births has barely fallen in recent times. A separate study found that Poland, Croatia and Estonia have lower rates of stillbirths than Britain.

5. Osborne plan could leave 60,000 homeless

Tens of thousands of families will be forced to leave their council homes as a result of George Osborne’s plan to restrict social housing to the poorest. The move would also leave such hard-working families unable to afford a local alternative, claims a report. Almost 60,000 households will be unable to afford to remain in their council properties from next April, as a result of the reform.

6. Online-dating rape reports are soaring

The number of people claiming they have been raped by someone they met on a dating app or website has risen six-fold in five years. There were 184 rape allegations in 2014, up from 33 in 2009, according to the National Crime Agency. Some 85% of the rape victims were women and of these, 42% were aged 20 to 29 and 24% were between 40 and 49.

7. Terry Wogan talked of Grim Reaper in final interview

In his final interview, Sir Terry Wogan, who died this week, said: “I don’t believe in God, but when the Grim Reaper turns up, I may well think, ‘Oh, just in case, let me leave an exit door open. Maybe I do believe!’” The Irish broadcasting legend also said: “I am 77. Things will go wrong. I am clinging to the wreckage.” Wogan will have a private funeral next week.

8. Kenneth Clarke questions Boris Johnson's ambitions

Tory grandee has launched an attack on Boris Johnson, who he says has “undoubtedly the biggest personality on the block” but has a following “based entirely on his personality”. Speaking of the London mayor’s purported prime ministerial ambitions, Clarke said: “The public loves Boris but he has to answer the question, ‘What would you do if you were Prime Minister?’”

9. Eddie Jones: I expected England to win

Eddie Jones said he was always confident his England side would beat Scotland in their Six Nations opener. Boss Jones oversaw a 15-9 win at Murrayfield to retain the Calcutta Cup in his first game as head coach. Tries from George Kruis and Jack Nowell sealed the victory. "In all honesty I always thought we were going to win the game," the 56-year-old Aussie told BBC Sport.

10. Claudio Ranieri dismisses title-favourites talk

Leicester City boss Claudio Ranieri has dismissed suggestions his side are title favourites after they beat Manchester City. The Foxes' 3-1 win leaves them five points clear at the top. However, second-placed Tottenham's players are starting to believe they can win the title, according to manager Mauricio Pochettino. Today, Chelsea host Manchester United, while Arsenal are at Bournemouth.

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