Press Roundup Tuesday 13 October 2009

By Press Office
October 13, 2009

A selection of stories from today's press and other media that relate to Ekklesia's work, produced daily by James Vincent and covering papers such as The Times, Daily Telegraph, Independent and Guardian.

Economy & Politics

MPs' expenses: kitchen cabinets and a piper in Gordon Brown's claims
From a new Ikea kitchen to the cost of hiring a bagpiper, Gordon Brown’s expense claims were among the most colourful and varied of any MP.

David Cameron asked to explain mortgage by Sir Thomas Legg
David Cameron, the Conservative leader, and Chris Grayling, the shadow home secretary, are among senior Tories whose expenses claims have been queried by Sir Thomas Legg in his independent audit.

BNP frozen out at the Commons
All Euro MPs will today be barred from the Commons in the wake of the British National Party's poll victories.

BNP leader Nick Griffin to face Bonnie Greer on Question Time
The black playwright and author Bonnie Greer is to take on the British National Party leader Nick Griffin on the BBC One programme Question Time next week.

Comment: Steve Richards: Parliament isn't corrupt, just mediocre
The focus on MPs' integrity is a red herring, as it usually is in British politics.

Comment: With the connivance of this wretched new Speaker, MPs are trying to destroy an honest man for daring to expose their greed
Day one of the new season in Parliament and the nation was surely entitled to expect a degree of contrition from Britain’s disgraced MPs.

Comment: The MPs' expenses scandal could change politics for ever
The class of 2010 will be a new generation of political virgins who are untouched by outrage over the John Lewis list.

Comment: Electoral reform could save the climate
Green groups such as Greenpeace could benefit if open primaries were used to select candidates.

Ecology & Environment

EDF 'sends used nuclear material' to Siberia
EDF, the French firm which owns eight of Britain's nuclear power stations has shipped hundreds of tons of used radioactive material to Russia.

Jordan to refill shrinking Dead Sea with salt water
Jordan is to refill the shrinking Dead Sea with salt water despite concerns from environmentalists about the threat to its unique eco-system.

Madagascar's forests under threat from illegal timber trade
The government of Madagascar has been accused by conservation groups of allowing the illegal trade in precious wood to flourish.

Comment: Dominic Lawson: Here's another phoney war: the one on climate change
There's no glory in spending $10m a year on giant nozzles that squirt sulphur dioxide.

People & Power

Kidnapped Irish priest 'spotted alive by Philippines army'
An elderly Irish priest kidnapped in the southern Philippines has been seen alive in an area known to be a stronghold of Muslim militants, a military official has said.

Immigration centre's toll on children's mental health
Children forcibly held in a British immigration detention centre have experienced serious psychological and physical health problems, a medical report claims today.

Dachau link with Israeli town angers survivors
The German town of Dachau has become the first location of a former Nazi death camp to establish a partnership with an Israeli town in a controversial "peace and understanding" agreement.

Venezuela's president Hugo Chávez accused of turning tyrant
He was the man who saved Hugo Chávez when all seemed lost. A coup had ousted Venezuela's president and buried, it seemed, his leftist experiment.

Religion & Society

Relics of St Therese of Lisieux arrive at Westminster Cathedral
Amid clouds of incense and flanked by priests carrying lanterns, the much-travelled mortal remains of an obscure French Carmelite nun were carried into Westminster Cathedral, watched by a crowd of almost 1,000 pilgrims, alternately praying and cheering.

Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, urges families to grow their own food
Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, has urged families to tackle climate change by growing fruit and vegetables in their gardens and allotments instead of buying produce flown thousands of miles.

Comment: Religion can help, but not replace, the state
The question is what the voluntary sector, whatever its denomination, can do on its behalf.

Comment: A Mooreish solution
It's not surprising that Michael Moore is a committed Catholic – the social teaching of the church reflects his views pretty closely.

Globalisation & Development

China tightens grip on Africa with $4.4bn lifeline for Guinea junta
While the rest of the world recoiled in horror at recent events in Guinea, where at least 150 pro-democracy supporters were killed and dozens of women publicly raped by government soldiers, China has sensed an opportunity to steal another march on Western competitors in Africa.

Mugabe ally 'retaliates' against Nestle for cancelling Grace's milk
Zimbabwean authorities have hit back at Nestlé for cancelling its milk order from Grace Mugabe after an international outcry at the revelation that she was one of its regular suppliers.

Comment: Britain's success in Afghanistan is measured in small steps
Better security, a health post, more schools – you know of the sacrifices, but let me tell you about the real progress.

Peace & War

Extra troops vital to Afghan mission success, says general
The head of the international force which has lost the most lives in Afghanistan has said that reinforcements are necessary to provide security and achieve a long-term settlement in the conflict.

North Korea fires 5 short-range missiles
North Korea fired five short-range missiles off its east coast today, a news report said, even as South Korea proposed working-level talks with its communist neighbour.

Britain steps up pressure on Iran with trading ban on big companies
Britain has increased pressure on Iran over its nuclear programme by announcing a trading ban with two Iranian companies that violated UN sanctions.

Life & Death

China court sentences six Uighurs to death
A court in China's far western Xinjiang region sentenced six men to death yesterday for murder and other crimes committed during ethnic riots that killed nearly 200 people.

Norwegian security contractors launch plea against Congo death sentences
Two Norwegian security contractors convicted of murder and espionage in the Democratic Republic of the Congo will tomorrow begin an appeal against their death sentences.

Education & Culture

Children educated at home at severe disadvantage, study shows
Children educated at home are twice as likely to be known by social services and four times more likely as young adults to be out of work, education or training than those who go to school, MPs have been told.

Race & Identity

Police arrest 48 in Manchester race demonstrations
Police made 48 arrests yesterday in Manchester as thousands of protesters clashed  during rival race marches.

Sex & Gender

Comment: Don't ignore militarised sexual violence
There's no evidence of rape as a weapon of war in Sri Lanka – but all governments must confront military acts of sexualised brutality.

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.