News in 5 Minutes: Taliban makes fresh attacks on centre of Helmand province, UK Government plans new wave of cuts to public services, and Carswell vs Farage

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TODAY’S INSTALMENT (28 February) of the CommonSpace daily news roundup includes: Taliban makes fresh attacks on centre of Helmand province, UK Government plans new wave of cuts to public services, and Carswell vs Farage.

News: Taliban makes fresh attacks on centre of Helmand province

Afghanistan region formerly occupied by UK troops still war-torn after 16 years after invasion

An alleged Taliban attack has killed 13 police officers in Lashkar Gar in Afghanistan’s Helmand province, as violence mounts in the region formerly occupied by British troops. The attack, allegedly carried out by a militant posing who had infiltrated the force, underlines growing conflict in the region and the instability of Afghanistan more than 15 years after it was initially invaded.

Politics: UK Government plans new wave of cuts to public services

Yet more cuts to struggling services planned, almost seven years into Tory austerity drive

The UK Government is planning another round of harsh austerity cuts, with departments told to look for savings of up to 6 per cent of their budgets. The news comes after figures were released showing that NHS England, already struggling from under-resourcing, will be forced to close more hospitals in a new wave of cuts.  In the near decade since the first sings of the economic crisis in the summer of 2007, wages have fallen by 10.4 per cent, and public and private debt have increased. Wealthy corporations are increasingly refusing to pay-out on their pension promises, and the over-extended financial sector has faced little by way of new regulation.

Sport: Hopes for future of Scottish Rugby as national team reaches highest ever international ranking

Scotland’s weekend triumph over Wales boosts national sides morale

There are high hopes for the future of Scottish rugby after the national sides weekend triumph over Wales puts Scotland at its highest ever international ranking.

Culture: National Museum of Scotland becomes country’s most popular attraction

Museum overtakes Edinburgh council

The National Museum of Scotland has overtaken Edinburgh castle as the largest attraction for visiters in Scotland. 1.81 million Visited the site last year, up 15.5 per cent on the previous year. Visits to Scottish sites of interest increased by 6 per cent to almost 30 million

Weather: Another mixed day of sun and rain

Warmer front moving in from the west

It will be another day of very mixed weather across Scotland, with a mixture of rain and sun across much of the country. A front of warmer weather is moving in the west.

And another thing: Carswell vs Farage

“Services to headline writing”

This squalid, school boy tussle between former UKIP head Nigel Farage and UKIP’s lone MP Douglass Carswell is hilarious stuff.

Picture courtesy of Defence ImagesAfghanistan MattersUK in Italy*Debs*Ben Masonnebojsa mladjenovicGage Skidmore

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