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Cameron, Miliband and Clegg to face QT audience

Question Time host David Dimbleby will lead the Election Leaders Special Credit: PA

A Question Time Election Leaders Special will see David Cameron, Ed Miliband and Nick Clegg separately face a studio audience a week before the country goes to the polls.

The BBC announced arrangements today for the special programme, hosted by David Dimbleby, to be broadcast live this Thursday which will see the three party leaders each face questions from the public for 30 minutes.

The parties and the BBC have chosen the Prime Minister to go first followed by Labour leader Miliband and then Liberal Democrat leader Clegg.

It will be broadcast from Leeds Town Hall and will be broadcast on BBC One and BBC Radio 5 live from 8pm to 9.30pm.

Later the same evening, there will be three special programmes broadcast on BBC One in different parts of the UK, in which Nicola Sturgeon, Leanne Wood and Nigel Farage will each answer voters’ questions for half an hour.


Madeleine McCann parents awarded £358,000 libel payout

Kate and Gerry McCann, the parents of missing Madeleine, have been awarded a libel payout by a court in Portugal against the former police chief who led the investigation into their daughter's disappearance.

Kate and Gerry McCann. Credit: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

Goncalo Amaral was ordered to pay damages of €250,000 to each of the McCanns, a total of £358,000, after they sued following the publication of his book The Truth of the Lie.

The court also ordered sales of the book to be halted.

Giving evidence at Lisbon's Palace of Justice last year the couple spoke of their "devastation, desperation, anxiety and pain" over the claims.

They added that the book hampered support from in Portugal as they looked for their daughter.

Mrs McCann told the court her young son had asked about Mr Amaral's allegations after hearing about them on the radio while travelling on the school bus.

Baltimore police: 15 officers injured during unrest

A man cleans up as Maryland State police stand guard in Baltimore. Credit: Reuters

At least 15 officers were hurt, including six who were hospitalised, during a night of unrest and arson, Baltimore police have said.

Earlier this morning, National Guardsmen fanned out across the city, police with riot shields blocked streets, and firefighters doused smouldering blazes after looting and arson erupted in Baltimore following the funeral of 25-year-old Freddie Gray, a black man who died in police custody.

'Wait and see' if Brand does vote, says Miliband

Ed Miliband visited Russell Brand late last night Credit: PA Wire

Ed Miliband declined to say whether he had persuaded comedian Russell Brand to vote in this year's General Election during their meeting late last night.

When asked whether the comedian would vote on May 7 by 5 News political editor Andy Bell, the Labour leader said: "You'll have to wait and see."

I think Russell Brand and anyone who thinks they shouldn't vote was wrong, and I'll engage with him and anyone else who doesn't think we should vote.

– Ed Miliband

Miliband said that meeting with Brand, who in 2013 said that he had never voted, made the election campaign "more interesting" despite Conservative leader David Cameron criticising the move as a "joke".

The Prime Minister's jibe appeared to prompt Brand to tweet "Don't be jealous, Dave. I'll run into you at West Ham - when you're not busy with ordinary people" alongside a picture of Cameron in his Bullingdon Club days.

A fuzzy picture of Miliband leaving Brand's east London home emerged on Twitter at around 10pm yesterday.

Saudi Arabia thwarts attack on US Embassy in Riyadh

Saudi Arabia says it has arrested 93 people with links to the so-called Islamic State, foiling several terror attacks including a planned strike on the US Embassy in the kingdom's capital, Riyadh.

Interior Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Turki told the Associated Press that the arrests include a cell of 65 people arrested in March who were involved in a plan that included targeting residential compounds, prisons and security forces.

Authorities also thwarted a plot for a suicide attack on the US Embassy after receiving information about the plan in Mid-March, the General said.


Miliband says he wants to persuade Brand on voting

Ed Miliband has said he is "proud to be engaging" with Russell Brand in this election.

Speaking at a campaign event in Cardiff, the Labour leader said that "politics is being played in an increasingly empty stadium", adding: "if we don't engage in different ways with people that aren't engaging in this election, then we will have fewer and fewer people engaging".

Mr Miliband met with Mr Brand last night, when he recorded an interview at the comedian's house for his YouTube channel "The Trews".

Campaigners win right to challenge assisted suicide law

Disability rights campaigners have won permission to bring a legal challenge against the Director of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, over current assisted suicide laws.

The 1961 Suicide Act makes it a criminal offence to assist or encourage suicide. The DPP has a discretion on whether to prosecute according to the published policy.

Last October, the DPP amended the policy, making the prosecution of healthcare professionals in assisted suicide cases less likely.

Today Nikki and Merv Kenward were given permission to challenge the DPP's actions, arguing that the DPP had in fact "changed" the policy and made it more "liberal".

They argue that the significance and legality of the change should now be properly assessed.

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