Magazine article The Spectator

Potrait of the Week

Magazine article The Spectator

Potrait of the Week

Article excerpt

Home

A bomb was found at East Midlands airport. It was in a parcelled computer toner cartridge filled with pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN), the high explosive found in the underpants of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab on a flight to Detroit last Christmas day. A similar parcel was found in Dubai. Both parcels were sent from Sanaa, the capital of Yemen, and addressed to synagogues in Chicago, though British authorities said the bomb discovered in the East Midlands was intended to explode in the air. Both bombs had spent some time in the holds of passenger planes. Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said the bombs had been made by the organisation known as al-Qa'eda in the Arabian Peninsula. Unaccompanied air freight to Britain from Somalia as well as Yemen was banned.

David Cameron, the Prime Minister, met President Nicolas Sarkozy of France in London to sign a defence treaty with provisions to share nuclear technology and testing and to establish a joint army expeditionary force. General Sir David Richards had taken up his role as chief of the defence staff four days earlier. Police investigated whether a car in which a pipe bomb was discovered at Belfast airport might have been parked there since 2009.

Fifteen people stranded in the dark in a train for half an hour managed to walk to nearby Foxton station, but a railway official succeeded in locking 360 others on board for another two hours until they were taken six miles to Royston.

At a summit in Brussels, Mr Cameron agreed to a 2.9 per cent rise in the EU budget and said: 'We've prevented a crazy 6 per cent rise.' Lord Tebbit called it a 'Vichystyle' betrayal. Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, responded to cuts in housing benefit by saying: 'We will not accept any kind of Kosovo-style social cleansing of London.' The London Underground went on strike again. Serco, a group that carries out government service contracts, asked its suppliers to pay it a 2.5 per cent rebate, but then decided to 'apologise unreservedly' for doing so. The government ceded voting rights to convicted prisoners. A firearms officer was said to have inserted song titles, including 'F- My Old Boots', a 1988 track by the Membranes, into the phrasing of his evidence to the inquest into the death of the barrister Mark Saunders. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.