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Rolf Harris loses appeal against sex convictions

The youngest of Rolf Harris' victims was just seven or eight at the time. Credit: PA

Disgraced entertainer Rolf Harris has lost an appeal to get his convictions for a string of assaults on young girls overturned.

The 84-year-old was jailed in June for five years and nine months for attacks which spanned 20 years.


Whistleblower: Woolf's appointment is 'insult to victims'

The appointment of Fiona Woolf as head of the inquiry into an alleged child abuse ring within Westminster is an "insult to victims", the whistleblower who first raised the claims said.

Former child protection worker Peter McKelvie told ITV News he wanted to see a "completely independent panel" and that survivors must have the biggest say in who represents them in the investigation.

He added he did not think the government were taking it very seriously and said: "They are either very naive or there is a grand plan that isn't making sense to survivors."

Inquiry 'should not be restricted to sexual abuse'

The Westminster inquiry into alleged abuse of children in the Eighties should not be restricted to sexual abuse, a child protection expert has said.

Dr Liz Davies, child protection reader at London Metropolitan University, said: "It should be about organised child abuse. I've got survivors who were tortured but not sexually abused. Are we saying that their views are not important?"

Burkina Faso's president 'resigns', army colonel says

Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore has resigned, Burkina24 television reported, citing an army colonel.

Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore 'has resigned'. Credit: Ute Grabowsky/DPA/Press Association Images

Lieutenant-Colonel Issaac Zida made the announcement in the capital Ouagadougou.

Thousands of people had stormed parliament and state television buildings in protest at plans by the president to change the law to enable him to extend his 27-year rule.


Westminster inquiry 'tainted before it's even begun'

Victims claim they were abused by a "VIP" figures within parliament in the 1980s. Credit: PA

The inquiry into alleged child sex abuse in the heart of Westminster is "tainted before it's even begun," a rape charity has said.

Echoing calls for the resignation of inquiry head Fiona Woolf, Katie Russell, spokesperson for Rape Crisis England & Wales, said her position was now untenable.

She said: "It needs to be as open and honest, as transparent and independent as possible in order to gain the trust and confidence of survivors.

"What sexual abuse survivors are telling us now is that this has not so far been achieved, that the process has been tainted for them before the enquiry has even begun and that their trust has been compromised.

"And it is survivors' trust that is paramount to this enquiry, over and above the credentials of any individual. For this reason, Rape Crisis respectfully says that it is time for Fiona Woolf to step down."

Britain experiences warmest Halloween on record

Britain has experienced its warmest Halloween on record.

Mild temperatures in the UK have continued into Autumn. Credit: PA Wire

Temperatures in Filton, Bristol hit 20.5C today, beating the previous record of 20C set in Kent in 1968.

Forecasters say temperatures could reach 21C in the South East - eight degrees higher than average.

This year has been warmest on record with mild conditions continuing into autumn.

Blaze at fireworks factory still smouldering a day later

Smoke could still be seen billowing from a fireworks factory which caught fire last night.

Parts of the factory still appeared to be on fire today. Credit: SWNS

Firefighters were on the scene in Stafford to put out the last flames and assess damage to the building.

The factory is said to be completely destroyed in the blaze. Credit: SWNS

Two people remain unaccounted for since the fire took hold at 5.15pm on Thursday.

A van parked outside the factory is burned out. Credit: SWNS
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