News from the United Kingdom, Tuesday 12th March 2013

The Guardian: Boy admits possessing explosive substances and bomb-making books. ‘A 16-year-old boy has admitted possessing explosive chemicals and bomb-making books and diagrams. The teenager, who cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to two terror charges and another offence at a hearing at Birmingham magistrates’ court on Monday. He admitted possessing explosive substances and a host of literature including a book on how to make the explosive semtex. The boy, who was arrested at his home in Northamptonshire in February last year, admitted possessing the explosive substances – sulphur powder and potassium nitrate.’

BBC News: Abu Qatada deportation ban can be lifted, judges told. ‘A block on deporting radical cleric Abu Qatada from the UK should be lifted, lawyers for the home secretary have told the Court of Appeal. Last year judges ruled he could not be sent to Jordan for a retrial over alleged involvement in terrorism plots. There was a “real risk” evidence gained by torture would be used, they said. Government lawyers argue they took the “wrong approach” in reaching their decision and say a “fair” trial was possible. Judgement has been reserved.’

The Guardian: Cross-border co-operation in Northern Ireland ‘is saving lives’. ‘Cross-border security co-operation is saving lives in the face of an upsurge in dissident republican violence, the Northern Ireland secretary, Theresa Villiers, said on Monday. Villiers used an Anglo-Irish trade meeting in London, timed to coincide with David Cameron meeting the taoiseach, Enda Kenny, to thank the Dublin government and its security forces for helping to counter the threat from groups like the new IRA. Speaking at a meeting of the British Irish Chamber of Commerce, Villiers said she wanted to “place on the record here my immense gratitude to the taoiseach for the unprecedented level of security co-operation between our countries. That co-operation has undoubtedly saved lives.”’

The Huffington Post: Women Targeted In Anti-Muslim Attacks, More Than Half By Far Right Groups, Tell MAMA Report Says. ‘Far-right extremists are responsible for more than half of all attacks on Muslims, with women increasingly targeted in more than half of all Islamophobic hatred, a survey has found. More than 600 attacks on Muslims were reported since March 2012, from a five-year-old child who was hit by a car to an 89-year-old pensioner, according to the UK’s official anti-Muslim violence helpline and charity Tell MAMA.’

Wales Online: Cardiff student denies having Al Qaeda material on computer. ‘An aeronautics engineering graduate today denied knowing he had terrorist literature on his computer. Norman Idris Faridi, 32, said the documents, including a copy of al Qaeda’s Inspire magazine, were among items he downloaded from the internet. But he had not looked at them carefully, intending to sort out what he wanted at a later date. But after being stopped and questioned for three hours at Heathrow Airport in December 2011, he panicked and deleted all his files. The Kenyan national said he was surprised in July last year when he was arrested and shown copies of what was in the material.’

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