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Dec 19, 2012

Nearly half of UK forces to leave Afghanistan in 2013

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain will withdraw nearly half its troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2013, the government said on Wednesday, as part of a security handover to Afghan forces more than a decade after the U.S.-led invasion.

Nearly all of Britain’s 9,000 soldiers are due to pull out when the NATO mission finishes in late 2014, ending a long, costly and unpopular war that has cost the lives of 438 UK troops.

Dec 5, 2012

Osborne tries to sweeten pill for austerity Britain

LONDON (Reuters) – More austerity looks certain when British finance minister George Osborne presents a half-yearly budget statement on Wednesday, even if he tries to juggle some spending around to ease the pain.

A darker economic outlook means Osborne is likely to commit to further spending cuts years into the future to save his flagship deficit reduction plan, though he also plans some new investment to sweeten the pill in the short term.

Nov 28, 2012

Stagnation haunts Osborne’s growth gamble

LONDON (Reuters) – Chancellor George Osborne is expected to defend his faltering austerity plan next week as the only credible way of solving the government’s biggest political problem – its failure to deliver a strong recovery.

No matter how Osborne presents the sums in his December 5 “Autumn statement”, he cannot hide a simple fact: the stagnating economy has played havoc with his ambitious plans to cut Britain’s debts before the next election in 2015.

Nov 26, 2012

Canada’s Carney named as surprise Bank of England chief

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain named Canadian central bank chief Mark Carney on Monday as the next governor of the Bank of England, springing the surprise choice of a foreigner to help steer the world’s sixth-largest economy out of stagnation.

A former Goldman Sachs investment banker who as central bank head guided the Canadian economy through the global economic crisis, Carney will succeed Mervyn King who retires next July.

Nov 26, 2012

UK to announce new BoE governor around 1530 GMT

LONDON, Nov 26 (Reuters) – Britain is expected to name a new
governor of the Bank of England at around 1530 GMT on Monday,
with insider Paul Tucker tipped to get the job of helping to
steer the world’s sixth-largest economy out of stagnation.

Finance minister George Osborne is due to make a statement
on the Bank of England after defence questions in parliament,
which start at 1430 GMT and last around an hour.

Nov 26, 2012

UK may face deeper government spending cuts -IFS

LONDON (Reuters) -Chancellor George Osborne may have to announce more spending cuts and tear up one of his key austerity goals next month, the Institute for Fiscal Studies said on Monday, warning government borrowing was likely to rise this year.

Osborne, who updates parliament with the latest official borrowing and growth forecasts on December 5, has struggled to keep his austerity targets on track because of the economic malaise.

Nov 15, 2012

BBC pay out 185,000 pounds over false abuse claim

LONDON, Nov 15 (Reuters) – The BBC agreed to pay 185,000
pounds ($295,000) on Thursday to a former treasurer of Britain’s
Conservative Party wrongly accused of child sex abuse as a
result of one of its reports.

The settlement came as media reports said one of the BBC’s
former stars had been arrested as part of an ongoing police
investigation into sex crimes centred on the publicly funded
broadcaster.

Nov 15, 2012

McAlpine nears deal with BBC for false abuse claim

LONDON (Reuters) – A former treasurer of Britain’s Conservative Party, wrongly accused of child sex abuse, edged closer to a settlement with the BBC on Thursday and his lawyer said those who had sullied his client’s reputation should get in touch and reach deals.

The threat may ensnare hundreds of Twitter users and bloggers who wrongly named Lord Alistair McAlpine, an ally of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, as the unidentified Conservative accused in a BBC report of abusing boys in social care.

Nov 8, 2012

UK pedophile scandal risks becoming gay witch-hunt: David Cameron

LONDON (Reuters) – Speculation about the identity of a senior Conservative party member accused of child sex abuse could descend into a “witch-hunt” of homosexuals, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Thursday.

Cameron ordered an investigation this week after a child abuse victim said a prominent member of the prime minister’s party had abused him during the 1970s, prompting Internet speculation over who the politician might be.

Nov 8, 2012

Paedophile scandal risks becoming gay witch-hunt – Cameron

LONDON (Reuters) – Speculation about the identity of a senior Conservative party member accused of child sex abuse could descend into a “witch-hunt” of homosexuals, Prime Minister David Cameron said on Thursday.

Cameron ordered an investigation this week after a child abuse victim said a prominent member of the prime minister’s party had abused him during the 1970s, prompting Internet speculation over who the politician might be.

    • About Matt

      "I cover all aspects of government policy from the British parliament, but concentrate on Number 10, fiscal policy at the Treasury, and monetary policy at the Bank of England. I am based in our parliament office in Westminster and in our UK bureau in East London."
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