UK News: Rise in kids stolen by parents to go abroad

THE number of British children abducted by parents and taken abroad has risen by 10 per cent over the past year, according to Foreign Office figures published today.

161 children were taken to countries that have not signed up to a treaty designed to ensure the return of minors wrongfully removed from the UK.

Spending power for councils

DEPUTY Prime Minister Nick Clegg was today set to promise to make communities "masters of their own economic destinies" by handing them more spending power.

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Mr Clegg was set to signal legislation giving councils more control over the taxes they raise and borrowing powers.

Warning that strikes will impact on businesses

INDUSTRY leaders today warned that strikes by up to 750,000 teachers, lecturers, civil servants and other workers tomorrow will have a "significant impact" on business confidence and inward investment.

The British Chambers of Commerce said disruption caused by the 24-hour walkout over pensions will lead to many parents having to take the day off work to look after children. Working parents will lose pay and productivity will be hit, said the business group.

Chance for biggest jackpot

LOTTERY players will have the chance to win the biggest-ever UK jackpot on a Europe-wide draw this Friday.

No player guessed the EuroMillions' five main numbers and two Lucky Star numbers to win the jackpot last night.

So the prize has now rolled over to Friday's draw, with an estimated 136 million up for grabs for one or more lucky winners.

Honorary degree for Iannucci

THE comedian behind television shows The Thick Of It and I'm Alan Partridge has received an honorary degree from Glasgow University.

Armando Iannucci said it was an "emotional" moment to be made a doctor of letters at the historic institution.

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London: Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson has admitted he is "concerned" about burglary levels in the capital after statistics revealed they are on the increase. Latest crime figures show there were 1,061 more burglaries in London last month than in May last year.

Chester: Keepers at a zoo have succeeded in breeding three rare parrots after 19 years of trying. Three Philippine cockatoo chicks are being hand-reared at Chester Zoo in Cheshire after they were hatched in incubators. The chicks are so small they are being kept in an ice-cream tub.