Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Friday 14 Jan 2011

Silvio Berlusconi

Our popular news catch-up service is posted Monday to Friday at 8.0 am. You can rely on it to keep you up to date through the working day with the main news talking points. Berlusconi investigated for underage sexSilvio Berlusconi has been placed under investigation on suspicion of paying for sex with an underage prostitute, say prosecutors in Milan. The accusations reportedly relate to a story last year in which Karima El Mahroug, aka Ruby Rubacuori, claimed she attended orgies at the Italian prime minister's villa. Berlusconi has not been charged, but if found guilty, he faces up to 15 years in jail. OLDHAM VICTORY GIVES ED MILIBAND A BOOST Labour leader Ed Miliband got just the result he was hoping for in yesterday's Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election - a majority of 3,558 compared to the tiny margin of only 103 votes at last May's general election. The new Labour MP, replacing Phil Woolas, is Debbie Abrahams (above). The Lib Dems' failure to take the seat is seen as a rebuff for party leader Nick Clegg. The Tory vote fell by more than 7,000 - "not great", according to the party HQ. HOLIDAY-MAKERS HIT BY TUNISIAN RIOTsThomas Cook has been flying its customers home from Tunisia following the riots in which 23 people have died. Both Thomson and Thomas Cook have cancelled all new flights to the country until further notice. The rioters, mainly young people, are angry at the high cost of living and unemployment. Today, an unprecedented crowd gathered in central Tunis calling on President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali to quit. COLIN FIRTH GETS A HOLLYWOOD STARBritish actor Colin Firth, star of the box office-topping film The King's Speech, has been presented with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Firth is favourite to win the Golden Globe for best actor this Sunday, and is heavily tipped for an Oscar nomination when they are announced on January 25. He dedicated the star to his wife, Livia. "When I look down there at that star, it's her name I see," he said. Now, what about an Oscar AFGHAN WAR 'WAS TO KEEP THE ARMY BUSY'Former diplomat Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles has started a stink in Whitehall by accusing the British Army of sending troops to Afghanistan four years ago simply in order to keep them busy after Iraq and stop the government cutting numbers. Sir Richard Dannatt, head of the Army at the time, called Cowper-Coles's comments "disgraceful". But the diplomat told the Times: "He is lying, I am afraid. I can recall him saying it, sitting in his office in the Ministry of Defence." Two knights at war over 'disgraceful' Afghan story TINIE TEMPAH LEADS BRIT NOMINATIONSRapper Tinie Tempah has been nominated for four Brit awards including best single, best breakthrough act, best male solo artist and - the big one - British album of the year. Indie band The xx are nominated for three awards ­ best British breakthrough act, best British group and the best British album award. Fast-rising newcomer Jessie J was voted critics' choice - the only dead cert ahead of the February 15 awards ceremony. Tinie Tempah and Jessie J lead the Brit pack TUCSON'S YOUNGEST VICTIM LAID TO RESTHundreds of mourners lined the streets of Tucson, Arizona on Thursday for the funeral of Christina Taylor Green, the youngest victim of last Saturday's shooting rampage. The service took place at the Catholic church where she had sung in the choir. Her coffin was wheeled under a large US flag rescued from Ground Zero after the World Trade Centre attack - marking the fact that Christina was born on 11/9/2001. Picture of the day: Christina Green's funeral Gunslinger’s rights: it only seems mad to foreigners BRISBANE RESIDENTS WARNED TO STAY PUTAlthough the flooding of Brisbane has peaked, the dangers for residents daring to enter the floodwater were pointed up by the news that a 24-year-old man drowned when he was swept into a storm drain while inspecting a property in the suburbs. State premier Anna Bligh warned residents to stay put. "I do understand how keen everybody is to get back into their houses... these are still rapidly moving, swirling, dangerous waters." In pictures: Brisbane under water AFGHAN TALIBAN 'OK' ABOUT EDUCATING GIRLS The Taliban in Afghanistan are said to have relaxed their opposition to the education of girls. When they were last in power, female education and employment were banned and all women had to wear the burka. The apparent change in attitude was announced by Afghan education minister Farooq Wardak, suggesting the current government is seriously seeking a political settlement with the Taliban opposition. BRAZIL FLOODS: DEATH TOLL PASSES 500With rescuers still searching for survivors of the massive mudslides in south-eastern Brazil, the death toll has passed 500. Eye-witness reports from the city of Teresopolis, 40 miles north of Rio de Janeiro, describe rescuers and relatives searching with bare hands in mud that is 3m deep in places. Picture of the Day: Brazil floods

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Jack Bremer is a London-based reporter, attached to The Week.co.uk. He has reported regularly from the United States and France.