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BBC News: US military 'tried to free Foley'
Thursday 21st August 2014
Click above for live BBC news.


Welcome to the Walsall Portal - with in-depth local information, news, sport, everything on around WS2 and Staffordshire!

First some super useful links! Historic Photos, Maps & Jigsaws of Walsall!
Why not click below for some amazing old photos or maps of Walsall or the Walsall area in days gone by!


BBC news for Staffordshire

Nine in court after rooftop protest

Nine people appear in court charged with aggravated trespass after a rooftop protest in Staffordshire.

War memorial muted for hotel guests

A war memorial in the Staffordshire Moorlands is being silenced so nearby hotel guests are not awoken early.

Fire-hit pottery site to be cleared

A fire-ravaged former pottery site will be cleared because the building has become unstable, say its owners.

VIDEO: The debate over competition in the NHS

A £1bn contract to provide cancer care in Staffordshire is among those fuelling the debate over competition for services within the NHS.

Crime figures down at V Festival

The number of crimes reported and medical incidents both fall at the V Festival in Staffordshire compared with last year, say organisers.

HS2 and the new North-South divide

Has the proposal created a North-South divide?

VIDEO: Peaty beats Murdoch to European gold

Uttoxeter swimmer takes 100m breaststroke title

Live BBC World News

US military 'tried to free Foley'

The Pentagon says a US secret mission tried but failed to free US hostages in Syria, reportedly including murdered reporter James Foley.

Israel PM vows further Gaza campaign

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vows a continued campaign against Gaza militants, amid renewed fighting between the two sides.

Iceland evacuates area near volcano

Authorities in Iceland complete the evacuation of an area close to the country's Bardarbunga volcano over fears of an impending eruption.

Khan refuses to join Pakistan talks

Opposition leader Imran Khan has refused to join talks to end days of protests in Islamabad, saying they would be "no use" unless the Prime Minister resigns.

Russia convoy 'near Ukraine customs'

Four lorries from a 280-strong Russian aid convoy move into the customs zone near Ukraine's border, a Ukrainian security official says.

UN begins huge aid drop in Iraq

The UN says it has begun its largest aid operation for a decade as it attempts to reach half a million people in northern Iraq.

Liberia troops enforce Ebola lockdown

Security forces in Liberia's capital deploy to enforce a quarantine in a large slum area in order to contain the spread of Ebola, setting off protests.

BBC Sports News

Maribor 1-1 Celtic

Callum McGregor scores an away goal as Celtic draw with NK Maribor in the first leg of their Champions League play-off.

Man Utd complete £16m Rojo signing

Manchester United announce the £16m signing of defender Marcos Rojo from Sporting Lisbon on a five-year deal.

50 years of Match of the Day in stats & facts

Ahead of a BBC One special on Friday at 22:35 BST to mark 50 years of Match of the Day, we look at some facts about the famous show.

Brunt back after eight-month absence

England fast bowler Katherine Brunt is set to return after eight months out in Thursday's ODI with India at Scarborough.

Thursday's gossip column

Liverpool's move for Mario Balotelli collapses, Hull want Rhodes and Oxlade-Chamberlain reveals his new hobby.

Nine in court after rooftop protest

Nine people appear in court charged with aggravated trespass after a rooftop protest in Staffordshire.

War memorial muted for hotel guests

A war memorial in the Staffordshire Moorlands is being silenced so nearby hotel guests are not awoken early.

Fire-hit pottery site to be cleared

A fire-ravaged former pottery site will be cleared because the building has become unstable, say its owners.

VIDEO: The debate over competition in the NHS

A £1bn contract to provide cancer care in Staffordshire is among those fuelling the debate over competition for services within the NHS.

Crime figures down at V Festival

The number of crimes reported and medical incidents both fall at the V Festival in Staffordshire compared with last year, say organisers.

HS2 and the new North-South divide

Has the proposal created a North-South divide?

VIDEO: Peaty beats Murdoch to European gold

Uttoxeter swimmer takes 100m breaststroke title

AskTen - Ten amazing things you may not have known last week
http://askten.co.uk


1. Out of 162 nations 151 are currently involved in some form of conflict. Although the UK has managed to stay relatively free from internal conflict, the country only ranks 47th in this year's Global Peace Index. Iceland came top as the most peaceful nation for the third year in a row. The five least peaceful countries were, in order: Somalia, Iraq, South Sudan, Afghanistan and, in last place, Syria. Daily Express

2. The Premier League began on Saturday following a record summer of transfer spending in England's top league. The 20 top-flight clubs have invested an estimated £647m - £17m more than in the whole of last summer - with experts believing the figure could reach £1bn. Sky Sports News

3. British consumers spend an average of £142 shopping online while drunk. Lobster pots and diving equipment among the bizarre items people have ordered during their merry sprees. Most drunken spending sessions (53%) take place on Amazon, according to a survey by a comparison website. Daily Telegraph

4. Parents typically face spending £180 on sending their children back to school, figures show. A small number – nine per cent – will fork out as much as £900 on uniforms, books, excursions and stationery, the government-backed Money Advice Service found. About 20 per cent of parents said they will need to dip into savings, 16 per cent expect to use a credit card and eight per cent will rely on an overdraft. Metro

5. Pubs are now closing at a rate of 31 per week, according to the real ale group Camra. Campaigners are calling for urgent legislation to make it harder for pubs to be demolished or transformed into retail outlets. With 3% of pubs in the suburbs closing in the past six months, there are now 54,490 boozers left in Britain. The Observer

6. A huge asteroid has a one-in-300 chance of wiping out life on Earth – but not until 2800. Researchers at the University of Tennessee are studying Asteroid 1950 DA, which could strike earth on 16 March, 2880. It has a diameter of one kilometre and is travelling at nine miles a second relative to the Earth. It would hit at 38,000 miles per hour. The Times

7. The UK is the self-employment capital of western Europe, says the IPPR think-tank. Policymakers are concerned that the trend is a sign of labour market weakness, raising fears over the strength of the economic recovery. Around two-fifths of all new jobs since 2010 have been among the self-employed, a trend that has helped shape Labour's cost-of-living agenda. The Times

8. New research from the American Chemical Society shows wine kept in a cupboard at home ages four times as quickly as that stored in a professional cellar. After two years, those stored in domestic conditions had consistently aged more quickly and had fewer antioxidants, less red pigmentation and weaker flavour than the cellar versions. The Times

9. Half of all people eligible for a state pension are still working, a study suggests. One in three pensioners is fully retired while half are working at least part time to make ends meet, it adds. One in four of those toiling in their 60s, 70s and 80s is running their own business. Evening Standard

10. German vehicle-maker Daimler has an innovative approach to holiday email, which many people about to return from holiday may well wish their company would copy. Emails sent to employees while they are on holiday are automatically deleted. Email these people and you will get a message like this: I am on vacation. I cannot read your email. Your email is being deleted. Please contact Hans or Monika if it's really important, or resend the email after I'm back in the office. Danke Schoen. BBC

The latest BBC Video News clips

VIDEO: 'Our friend has given us a son'

BBC News met new parents Nick and Michael Scott-Kline with 18-month-old Elliot and surrogate mother Sarah Jones.

VIDEO: English attitudes to Scottish referendum

Has the Scottish referendum debate led England to consider its position within the Union?

VIDEO: Hijacked lorry sparks security alert

A security alert is under way in Londonderry following the hijacking of a lorry in the city.

VIDEO: Flying a vintage WW2 German plane

The Civil Aviation Agency is consulting on changes which would allow the owners of vintage planes to take paying passengers on flights.

AUDIO: 'I'm living in a tent with my son'

'Jane', a victim of domestic violence for 15 years, says nobody will help shelter her.

VIDEO: Friend pays tribute to reporter Foley

Sunday Times photographer Paul Conroy pays tribute to US reporter James Foley, who has apparently been killed by the Islamic State.

VIDEO: Biker guilty of 'dangerous' ride

A biker who filmed himself nearly crashing into a car head-on at high speed is found guilty of dangerous driving.