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Report into Lee Rigby killers to be released

Court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of of Michael Adebowale and Michael Adebolajo as they were found guilty of the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby. Credit: Elizabeth Cook/PA Archive

The extent of the security and intelligence agencies' prior knowledge of soldier Lee Rigby's murderers will be revealed this week as a long-awaited report from a parliamentary watchdog is finally published.

Michael Adebolajo and his younger accomplice Michael Adebowale slaughtered Fusilier Rigby in broad daylight in May last year.

It quickly emerged in the wake of the killing that secret services were aware of both Adebolajo, then 29, and Adebowale, then 22, but questions remain over whether they could have been more closely monitored.

An investigation by the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC), which has been subject to much debate over its bite, has now concluded and a report, described by Whitehall officials as "very substantial", will be released on Tuesday.

Gordon Brown to step down as an MP 'on a high'

Credit: Garry F McHarg/PA Wire

Former prime minister Gordon Brown and key 'Better Together' campaigner is to announce that he is standing down as an MP, according to reports.

Mr Brown, 63, will soon confirm that he will quit at the general election in May, after playing a key role in the Scottish independence referendum campaign, sources have said.

The Labour MP has focused on charity work and his role as United Nations special envoy for global education since his resignation as prime minister in 2010.

An ally told the Sunday Mirror newspaper: "Gordon has confirmed to friends that he will stand down at the election in May.

"He wants to go out on a high after effectively salvaging the campaign to keep the UK together in September. He will focus on his charity work."

Mr Brown was first elected to Parliament in 1983 and was prime minister from 2007 to 2010 and chancellor from 1997 to 2007.

His last-minute intervention in the referendum debate was widely credited with helping the pro-union Better Together campaign to victory.


Occupy London vows to continue protest

Protestors from the Occupy group hold a demonstration outside the Supreme Court in London on 21 November.

Protesters who spent the night near Parliament Square remained outside the Supreme Court today, insisting that they planned to stay until Sunday evening.

Around 30 protesters from the Occupy London group slept on land outside the Supreme Court building, which overlooks Parliament Square, after the square itself was fenced off. Around 45 demonstrators were still in the area this afternoon, displaying banners and placards.

Canning Green, a grassy area near the court, has also been closed off by police.

The demonstration remained peaceful this afternoon, and the Metropolitan Police said there had been only one arrest.

There were bizarre scenes early this evening as police and Westminster council officials forcibly removed a sofa from the protesters.

Sturgeon pledges to 'build a progressive coalition'

Scotland's new First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon said her party would team up with others across England and Wales to build an alliance against "austerity economics".

Nicola Sturgeon, addressing delegates at conference in Glasgow today. Credit: Press Association.

Speaking to supporters in Glasgow, Sturgeon said her party would "seek to build alliances with progressive forces across these islands" if there is a hung parliament after next May's general election.

The old Westminster system doesn't work for Scotland, we know that all too well.

But you know what, it doesn't work for many other parties other UK either. So when we send a strong team of SNP MPs to Westminster, we will seek to build alliances with progressive forces across these islands.

– Nicola Sturgeon

Mark Reckless: Conservatives cannot win majority

The decision to go into coalition combined, with the Government's policies means the Tories stand no chance of an overall majority at next year's general election, Ukip defector Mark Reckless has said.

Speaking at the eurosceptic Bruges Group this morning, Mr Reckless said he had not thought a Conservative victory was a "serious prospect" since David Cameron went into coalition with Nick Clegg.

Ukip MP Mark Reckless addressing an audience at the Bruges Group.

"That is largely because that decision led to unity on the left and a significant increase in the Labour vote due to departing Lib Dems," he argued.

He also hit out at Mr Cameron's leadership, saying: "How David Cameron and the Conservative-led government have governed over the last four and a half years has also tended, to put it mildly, to reduce the prospects of the Conservative Party being successfully returned at the next election."

However, he said the impact of Ukip's surge on Tory-held seats would be "small if any", whereas Ukip "can actually win seats in Labour areas from people who would never dream of voting Conservative.


Miliband: Labour is still the party of working people

Ed Miliband has sought to diffuse the row over Emily Thornberry's 'white van tweet' by saying Labour remains "the party of working people".

He said he was "furious" when he learned of Ms Thornberry's posting an image of a house festooned with England flags and that it was right for her to resign.

Ed Miliband speaking in the House of Commons. Credit: PA Wire

Writing in the Daily Mirror, Mr Miliband said: "Respect is the basic rule of politics and there is nothing unusual or odd about having England flags in your window. That is why she was right to resign."

Mark Reckless 'sore' over immigration 'policy change'

Ukip newest MP Mark Reckless is greeted by Commons Speaker John Bercow Credit: PA Wire

Ukip's latest MP Mark Reckless has suggested his party's policy was "changed" in the wake of a row over comments he made about European migrants in a pre-election hustings.

Mr Reckless said he was in "very close contact" with Ukip leader Nigel Farage before the ITV hustings on Wednesday, the day before the poll, when opponents argued that he appeared to suggest European Union migrants could be asked to leave if the UK quit the alliance.

The party's second MP told the Times newspaper:

Until Nigel changed it on Wednesday, the policy of the party was everyone can stay for the transitional period, no doubt about that, that there would then be a permanent arrangement which would be part of the EU negotiation.

The policy changed on Wednesday and I'm a bit sore about how I sort of came out of that, because I don't actually think I said I was only talking about welcoming people of particular circumstances.

I've always thought we should allow people to stay permanently, regardless, because that's the right thing to do by them and it's also the right thing for our party in terms of how we want to look to the country.

– Mark Reckless MP

Will the Ukip phenomenon change British politics?

Conservative defector Mark Reckless won Rochester and Strood for Ukip with a margin of nearly 3,000 votes.

As the by-election triumphs for Ukip grew the claims of a turning point in British politics came thick and fast.

But will the Ukip phenomenon change the face of British politics? ITV News Political Editor Tom Bradby reports:

Occupy protesters gather at Parliament Square

Around 100 protesters from the Occupy movement have gathered at Parliament Square calling for "real democracy now".

The Met Police said it attempted to make contact with organisers but the group had "failed to engage" with the force. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
The force confirmed a Section 60 AA order was in place in the area around Parliament Square which gives police powers to force people to remove masks where they anticipate criminal activity. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
Protester Tom Kay, from Sheffield, said, 'The police are unwilling to let people protest seriously.' Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire
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