Police have launched a manhunt after a woman was raped outside London's Imperial War Museum.The victim was attacked at about 3am on Tuesday last week in the Tibetan Peace Garden, which is next to the museum off Lambeth Road in Southwark.
A group of so-called paedophile hunters are accused of false imprisonment and using violence against two men who they suspected of being child sex offenders.
Sacks of crystal meth scooped from the sea by Burmese fishermen who mistook it for a deodorant substance had a street value of $20 million (£15.4m), an official said on Sunday, in a country believed to be the world's largest methamphetamine producer.
The singer upset members of the LGBTQ community by saying “I always thought I had to be gay, because I thought all guys were evil."
The Duke of Cambridge’s concern for his brother Prince Harry and wife Meghan is shared by other senior royals, the Standard has been told.Kensington Palace sources told the BBC yesterday that Prince William is “worried” about his sibling after Harry talked candidly about his mental health in a TV documentary.
Boris Johnson has been urged to disclose whether his government has sanctioned any surveillance or intelligence gathering on MPs involved in derailing his Brexit plans.The extraordinary demand from the Liberal Democrats follows claims published in newspapers that the government had carried out investigations into senior MPs and alleged dealings with foreign governments.
Steph McGovern is leaving the BBC Breakfast sofa behind to launch a new Channel 4 daytime show.Starting in spring 2020, The Steph Show will be broadcast live from Leeds during the week.
Shamima Begum, the east London schoolgirl who travelled to Syria to join the so-called Islamic State terror group, is today launching a legal challenge against the government's decision to strip her of her British citizenship. Tasnime Akunjee, representing Ms Begum, said: "She was married in an Isis ceremony within two weeks of reaching Syria to a 23-year-old fighter.
A pair of Peak District anglers were spotted dangerously close to a giant plug hole on Saturday. They were seen close to the plug hole in Derbyshire's Ladybower Reservoir which is owned by Severn Trent Water. Overflow water goes down the hole into a tunnel and eventually flows into the river below the dam.
Nine days before he would swear an oath to "preserve, protect and defend the constitution of the United States," then-president-elect Donald Trump held a press conference to make a big announcement.Though he maintained that as president he would be exempt from ethics laws on conflicts of interest, and therefore could legally run a private business and the executive branch at the same time, he announced that he was nevertheless handing over the reins of his company, the Trump Organization, to his two oldest sons, Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr.
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez moves up two weight divisions to try and win his eighth world title against light heavyweight king Sergey Kovalev in one of the biggest fights of 2019.In perhaps the boldest move in boxing this year, WBA and WBC champion Alvarez will put his plans to unify the middleweight division on hold. Instead, he will put the power that has established him as one of the sport’s most devastating hitters to the ultimate test against Kovalev, fighting above the 160lbs weight limit for just the third time in his career.
Credit Suisse and UBS downgraded the stock after Reuters on Friday reported that a series of internal messages from a former Boeing pilot described the plane's software as behaving erratically months before the jet entered service. The new revelation plunged the world's largest planemaker into a fresh crisis involving its flagship single-aisle aircraft, as the worldwide safety ban on the 737 MAX stretches into its eighth month. Boeing booked a $5.6 billion pre-tax charge in the second quarter and in July had estimated the total cost of the MAX grounding to be more than $8 billion.
It's nearly that time of year again - when we Britons gather in parks and gardens to watch dummies burn on bonfires and fireworks light up the sky, wrapped up in woolly hats and gloves.
On October 9, the Turkish military and its allies of the rebel Syrian National Army launched Operation Peace Spring, a military offensive aimed at driving Kurdish forces out of northeast Syria. In the days following the offensive, several videos of extrajudicial killings carried out by members of the Syrian National Army appeared online. The France 24 Observers team checked these videos, some of which show actions that “may amount to a war crime,” according to the United Nations. UPDATE: A first version of this article, published October 16, has been changed to remove a sensitive video showing a possible execution. We have replaced this video with screenshots of the same video, in accordance with the France Médias Monde code of ethics. WARNING – THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS GRAPHIC IMAGES The first video was shared on the messaging platform Telegram by Jarabulus News on October 12 at 10:35am. Jarabulus News shares information about the Syrian Islamist rebel group Ahrar al-Sharqiya, which is part of the Syrian National Army (SNA). The SNA is the new name for the Free Syrian Army, the group that rose up against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad at the beginning of the Syrian Revolution in 2011. Since 2017, it has been officially supported by Turkey, and Turkish forces take part in its military operations in northern Syria. The video shows armed men with three prisoners sitting on the ground. One of the prisoners wears a military uniform, while the other two are in civilian attire. They are next to the M4 road, which runs between Aleppo and Al-Hasakah, in northern Syria. A second video was shared on the same Telegram channel later that afternoon. Posted at 4:17pm, it shows the man in uniform from the first video in the same location (on the left in the collage below). Then, it shows yet another prisoner in civilian attire, who has his hands tied, being shot several times. The gunman shouts, "Here are the Party [editor's note: referring either to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) or its Syrian Kurdish affiliate, the Democratic Union Party (PYD)] pigs, here are the prisoners, kill them", before shooting the prisoner. Based on the footage, it is not possible to determine whether or not the prisoner was already dead prior to the shooting. Screenshots of the video posted on Telegram, 4:17pm October 12, 2019. The video itself is too graphic for us to publish. The armed men in this video are from one of the brigades that make up Ahrar al-Sharqiya. In a photo shared online, which shows two of the three prisoners who appear in the first video, you can see Abou Hatim Shaqra, one of the leaders of Ahrar al-Sharqiya, standing in the middle. According to the independent Syrian media outlet Euphrates Post, Hatim Shaqra committed numerous war crimes at the start of the Syrian revolution, between 2012 and 2013. Centre: Abou Hatim Shaqra, Ahrar al-Sharqiya leader. “Those who resisted were neutralised”The France 24 Observers team interviewed Al Hareth Rabbah, a Syrian photographer who said he was travelling with Ahrar al-Sharqiya and witnessed the executions shown in these two videos. He actually filmed some of the second video, at the request of one of the fighters. “Take my phone and film me shooting him with this sniper rifle!” the fighter says in the video. According to Rabbah, the executions took place early in the morning on October 12 along the M4 road, between the towns of Suluk and Tal Tamer. I’m working as a photographer for this faction at the moment. They had set up a roadblock on the M4. They ordered cars to stop and took some of the drivers as prisoners. However, some of the drivers didn’t want to give themselves up and resisted. Some of them opened fire. Others ran over our men. So the fighters neutralised them. Personally, I wasn’t carrying a weapon. You can see in the video that I just have a mobile phone and a camera. In the following video, Rabbah says, “Today, Brigade 123 of the Free Syrian Army [editor’s note: the Syrian National Army] is taking control of the road between Aleppo and Al-Hasakah, and by doing so is cutting the supply lines of the [Kurdistan Workers’] Party.” Leading Kurdish activist and politician killed On the same day the man in civilian clothing was executed, eight other people appear to have been killed by Ahrar al-Sharqiya, according to specialist news outlet Defense Post. Hevrin Khalaf, a Kurdish politician, was among the victims. She was head of the centre-left Future Syria Party. According to the party’s coordinator for Europe, she was coming home from an assembly in Al Hasakah, accompanied by her driver and one of her assistants, both of home were also killed. According to several Kurdish sources, they were ambushed. An autopsy released by the regional Kurdish authority notes that Khalaf was beaten before dying from a cerebral haemorrhage caused by gunshot wounds to the head. The photographer Al Hareth Rabbah explained the incident as follows: When they were ordered to stop at the roadblock, the armoured car carrying Hevrin Khalaf didn’t comply, and kept its doors shut. It was because of that that all these passengers were killed, also on October 12, in the early morning. A third video published on Telegram by Jarabulus News, at 5:34pm on October 12, shows a number of Ahrar al-Sharqiya fighters around Hevrin Khalaf’s car which is peppered with bullet holes. Someone in civilian clothes is on the ground, apparently dead. Later in the day, Kurdish journalist Ali Rizgar Dicle went to the place where these different acts of violence were committed. He filmed Khalaf’s bullet-riddled car, but did not find any corpses. In his video, you can see black patches on the ground, similar to those in the video posted on Telegram at 4:17pm, the one with the execution. Rizgar Dicle explains, “We are in the village of Tirwazî, today is October 12, it’s around 4pm. After the invasion and the Turkish state incursion into the north of Syria, the Turkish state and its jihadists who had sleeper cells near here entered the village.” Photos of the same car, published by another Kurdish journalist. Using Rizgar Dicle’s report, the France 24 Observers team was able to find the exact location where each of these videos were shot, between Suluk and Tal Tamer, as Al Hareth Rabbah suggested. The Syrian National Army’s response The day before the violence, on October 11, the Syrian National Army had publicly told its fighters to “treat prisoners and civilian Arabs and Kurds well.” On October 12, it launched a committee tasked with ensuring prisoners and civilians are respected. That day, the Jarabulus News Telegram channel also asked fighters “not to publish any video filmed during the battles because it distorts our reputation.” On October 16, Ahrar al-Sharqiya published a video showing the two men in civilian clothes seen in the first video, to show they were still alive. No information was given about the man killed in the second video. The United Nations warns of “war crime” The UN has said that the actions revealed by the footage “may amount to a war crime.” According to the Geneva Conventions, of which Turkey is a signatory, prisoners of war “must at all times be humanely treated. Any unlawful act or omission by the Detaining Power causing death or seriously endangering the health of a prisoner of war in its custody is prohibited.” Other images show a fighter with his foot on a corpse In addition to the videos filmed on October 12, there has been further evidence of Ahrar al-Sharqiya’s questionable activities as part of Operation Peace Spring. One video shows two dead men on the ground, surrounded by blood. They are in civilian clothes, but one is wearing a military vest. A group of men in fatigues stand over them. One of them appears to take a wristwatch off one of the corpses. A man can be heard declaring that he is a member of the “Badr Martyrs’ Battalion”, and that he is with Ahrar al-Sharqiya. Screenshots of the video. The Badr Martyrs’ Battalion has fought with the Free Syrian Army, now the Syrian National Army, since 2012, and according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, it has a history of torturing Kurdish civilians. The person filming announces that the Badr Martyrs’ Battalion has taken the region of Suluk and killed four Kurdish fighters. The video was published on October 2013 on the Jarabulus News Telegram channel, accompanied with five photos showing the same scene. In two of them, it is possible to identify the badges worn by a fighter that puts his foot on a corpse. On the left is the insignia of Ahrar al-Sharqiya, and on the right, the Syrian opposition flag, as it appears in the logo of the Syrian National Army. According to VDC-NSY, a Syrian organisation that documents human rights violations, this incident happened in Suluk, around 20 kilometres southeast of Tal Abyad, on October 12, but we were not able to independently verify this information. According to the VDC-NSY, a Syrian organisation that documents human rights violations, this incident happened in Suluk, around 20 kilometres southeast of Tal Abyad, on October 12, but we were not able to independently verify this information. Article by Fatma Ben Hamad.
Two schools are tied neck and neck at the top of the tree when it comes to GCSE performance among grammar schools in the latest school league tables.
An American Airlines flight was diverted to Dublin after a cleaning solution was spilled in the galley and cabin crew "lost consciousness". The airline said the service from Heathrow to Philadelphia landed in the Irish capital because of an "odour". In air traffic control audio posted online, a pilot said two members of "cabin staff" had "lost consciousness".
Zimbabwean authorities say at least 55 elephants have starved to death in thepast two months in the country's biggest national park amid a serious drought
Former informant suggests government may have encouraged judge to dismiss prosecutions. British intelligence officers welcomed the collapse of one of the most notorious IRA “supergrass” trials of the Troubles, according to a former MI5 agent who suggests the government may have encouraged a senior judge to dismiss the prosecutions. Thatcher’s Spy, the memoirs of Willie Carlin, who spent 11 years as an informant in the republican movement, contains claims about how the security service tried to redirect the Provisional IRA away from violence and down the road towards political engagement in the mid-1980s. Carlin’s reminiscences provide an extraordinary insight into the life of an agent in Derry, constantly fearing exposure and death at the hands of the IRA’s “Nutting Squad”. The trial that was supposedly sabotaged was heard by Northern Ireland’s then lord chief justice, Lord Lowry. It began with around 100 alleged IRA and Irish National Liberation Army (INLA) members being arrested on the evidence of another informer, Raymond Gilmour. The rounding up of activists had begun in 1982 and many of the 35 suspects who were eventually charged spent two years on remand in prison awaiting trial. The prosecution evidence depended almost exclusively on the word of Gilmour, who had been a volunteer in both the INLA and IRA. The case, one of the largest supergrass trials of the Troubles, coincided with an internal debate in the republican movement following the Maze prison hunger strikes about whether the IRA’s armed struggle should be pursued exclusively or whether it could be combined with an electoral strategy. Martin McGuinness, the IRA leader in Derry, supported the path of greater political engagement. In 1984, the expectation was that the trial – presided over by Lowry who was sitting in a Diplock court without a jury – would result in mass convictions. Carlin recounts meeting his army and MI5 handlers in Derry and paints a picture of the intelligence service’s exploitation, if not manipulation, of events. Having been called to a debriefing in Ebrington barracks, Carlin said one of his handlers “Stephen”, an MI5 officer, asked to meet at a nearby bar. Carlin recalled: “We went over the revelation that IRA ‘volunteers’ all over the north would be standing for the city council elections in May … It would be mostly IRA men because that was the only way Martin McGuinness could placate the IRA leadership, and at the same time it demonstrated they weren’t going soft. “Then we talked about Raymond Gilmour, the trial’s effect on us in Derry, and the obvious impact it would have when the boys were sentenced … [ ‘Stephen’ remarked that] ‘The judge might not see it the way you all think …’ “‘In his case, with a delicate matter like Gilmour’s, he’ll seek guidance from the judiciary and in some cases it’ll go right up through the Northern Ireland Office and even on up to the Home Office. The questions he asks are considered and legal guidance is passed back down.’” The MI5 officer, according to Carlin, said Northern Ireland’s most senior judge had been given “guidance” and “some private political guidance too”. “Stephen” added: “‘Apparently, there are or have been a few flaws in the prosecution’s case. It’s not a game-changer but Lord Lowry will now have to reflect on that guidance before he comes to a decision.’ “‘It might not be in the public interest, long-term, to convict. If … IRA volunteers are being prepared all over the north for the May council elections, then that’s a huge step towards some semblance of peace further down the road. Because it’s our guess that those volunteers will effectively and eventually be decommissioned.’” In the end, Lowry acquitted all the defendants, telling Gilmour: “You are a selfish and self-regarding man to whose lips a lie invariably comes more naturally than the truth.” Most of the suspects were immediately released. Lowry, who survived an IRA assassination attempt at Queen’s University Belfast in 1982, became a law lord and died in 1999. Gilmour died in England in 2016. Thatcher’s Spy is published by Merrion Press.
In her portrayal of the much younger queen, the actor is reminding us that many women continue to enjoy sex as long as men do. The majestic Helen Mirren is showcasing how much more straightforward it is for a woman to play at being royal than it is to marry into royalty. Even better, by playing, at the age of 74, the title role of HBO’s Catherine the Great, Mirren is portraying a woman “half her age”, while simultaneously reminding the world that many women actually like sex. And continue to do so as long as men do. Shocker. We have grown so used to wrinkly old men being found fabulously attractive by young women on screen that we even have a term for it: the Woody Allen syndrome. Yet Mirren, who literally pants for her key ally, Grigory Potemkin, on screen, is very unusual – I can’t think of any other female septuagenarians showing flesh on screen (unless they are playing a corpse). That Mirren is a generation older than the 50-year-old Jason Clarke, who plays Potemkin, is one thing, but the fact that she genuinely seems to be wanting – nay craving – post-menopausal sex is the real surprise. It is unprecedented and has drawn comparisons from some reviewers with other TV hits that subvert sexual power play – the lesbian love triangle in The Favourite, for instance, or Gentleman Jack. The power shift of Catherine the Great comes because she was a monarch. There still aren’t quite as many of those who are women as there are men, but maybe, as the stories we see on screen become more diverse, we will see many more brilliant older women playing romantic roles against younger men. Then we can call it the Helen Mirren syndrome.