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USA UK and Malta News
22/11/2007 - 22:58

Editoweb: UK today 22 nov 2007

Commonwealth suspends Pakistan - Antiviral drug stockpile to double - Confidence in Government collapses - Tories surge ahead in opinion poll - Emails spark more data loss queries.

Commonwealth suspends Pakistan
A Commonwealth ministerial committee Thursday decided to suspend Pakistan from the 53-nation bloc pending the return of the rule of law following the imposition of emergency earlier this month.
"CMAG suspended Pakistan forthwith from the councils of the Commonwealth, pending the restoration of democracy and the rule of law in that country," according to a statement read by Commonwealth Secretary General Don McKinnon.

Antiviral drug stockpile to double
At least half the population of the UK could get access to antiviral drugs if a flu pandemic strikes.
Health Secretary Alan Johnson has announced plans to tackle what he said was one of the "most severe risks currently facing the UK".
They include doubling the current stockpile of antivirals - which can reduce the length of the illness.

Confidence in Government collapses
Public confidence in the Government has collapsed in the wake of a series of crisis including this week's loss of 25 million people's personal data, a poll shows.
The Populus survey for The Times showed the proportion of voters confident of Labour's ability to handle economic problems had more than halved from 61% to 28%.

Tories surge ahead in opinion poll
The Conservatives have surged to a nine-point lead in the first opinion poll conducted since the missing discs scandal broke.
A YouGov survey for Channel 4 News put the Tories in one of their best positions for 15 years on 41 per cent - less than two months since the same poll had Labour 11 points in front.

Emails spark more data loss queries
The Tories claimed the emails cast fresh doubt on the Chancellor's claims that the loss of the database was down to a junior official in the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) offices in Washington, Tyne and Wear, who ignored proper procedures.
The emails also reveal that the National Audit Office (NAO) explicitly urged HMRC to ensure that the data was delivered "as safely as possible due to their content".

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