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Tories 'panic-stricken', Miliband election guru says

The Conservatives are "increasingly panic-stricken" after underestimating Ed Miliband, the Labour leader's American election guru has claimed.

David Axelrod has said the Tories are becoming increasingly desperate in their election Credit: PA Wire

David Axelrod accused the Tories of being overconfident, saying the party's campaign had lost its energy and momentum.

He said personal attacks on the Labour leader had backfired and made the Tories look "desperate", specifically mentioning Defence Secretary Michael Fallon's comments in which he accused Mr Miliband of"stabbing his brother in the back" to gain leadership.

Mr Axelrod told the Guardian: “At the beginning it was ‘Labour is profligate’. That did not work. Then it was a personal attack on Miliband and that did not work. The next attack was the £3,000 tax increase and then that proved not to be true.

"Now they have gone full circle and are making 11th-hour promises they have no way of funding since their budgets calls for the most extraordinary austerity.”

Suicide bomb kills 33 and injures 100 in Afghanistan

A police chief said a suicide bomb blast in Afghanistan's eastern city of Jalalabad killed 33 people and injured more than 100 outside a bank where government workers collect salaries.

Police have yet to determine if the attacker had worn the explosives or had placed them in a car. They were also investigating if there was a second explosion after people rushed to the scene to help.

Suicide bomb kills 33 and injures 100 in Afghanistan. Credit: Reuters
Police have yet to determine if the attacker had worn the explosives Credit: Reuters

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Miliband: Britain needs PM who will keep promises

Ed Miliband has said Britain needs a Prime Minister who will keep their promises on immigration as he prepares to outline his key policies on the issue later today.

Ed Miliband will attack David Cameron's record on immigration in a speech later today. Credit: PA Wire

Mr Miliband will say in a speech later today that David Cameron's pledge to cut migration to the tens of thousands was "in tatters", saying the figure had risen to "exactly three times higher than he promised".

"Britain needs a Prime Minister who will only make promises on immigration that he can keep," he will say.

"Real promises that will make a real difference: a better plan; a plan that starts with strong borders; so people have confidence that we control who comes into the country; a plan that's founded on fair rules, where wages can't be undercut and benefits must be earned; a plan that's based on the right values."

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Jeremy Clarkson says he will miss hosting Top Gear

Jeremy Clarkson has written about how much he will miss presenting Top Gear. Credit: Ben Birchall / PA Wire/PA Images

Jeremy Clarkson has written about how much he will miss hosting Top Gear and thanked fans for their support after he was sacked from the popular motoring show following a 'fracas' with a producer.

The presenter has not spoken publicly about being axed by the BBC, other than to say that "everybody's upset", but in his column in the Sun newspaper today, Clarkson briefly mentioned the incident.

Heartfelt thanks to all those who have written to say how much they will miss me on Top Gear. It's not as much, however, as I'll miss being there.

– Jeremy Clarkson

Woman due in court over cannabis worth £340,000

The woman is the ninth person charged in relation to a major international drug trafficking operation. Credit: Andrew Milligan / PA Archive/PA Images

A 24-year-old woman will appear in court today charged with importing thousands of pounds worth of cannabis.

The woman, who was arrested in Birmingham on Wednesday, is also charged with conspiracy to supply cannabis, possession with intent to supply and converting criminal property.

She is the ninth person charged in connection with a major international drug trafficking operation after police found £340,000 worth of cannabis at an address in Ballywalter, County Down last month.

She is due to appear before Newtownards Magistrates' court today.

Detective Inspector Andy Dunlop of the Police Service of Northern Ireland said: "There are more arrests to follow. This investigation is complex, but we are vigorously pursuing all lines of inquiry to gather all evidence against those allegedly involved."

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