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Daily Political Media Summary: 16 February 2009

Reform Scotland

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Daily Political Media Summary: 16 February 2009

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All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is blue and underlined.

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 Economy

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Lloyds: Lloyds banking group and the Treasury will defy calls for the bank to be nationalised despite the collapse in its shares triggered by bigger than expected losses at HBOS. (Scotsman on Sunday  page B1, Sunday Times page B1, Sunday Herald page 1, page 6, Richard Collins in the Scotsman, Telegraph page 1, FT page 2, Times page 2, Daily Mail page 5)

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 RBS Job Cuts: Royal Bank of Scotland boss Stephen Hester is to unveil a cost-cutting exercise, alongside record losses of close to £30 billion, which are expected to lead to a further 10,000 to 20,000 job cuts worldwide. (Sunday Times page B1)

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 Gordon Brown:  Gordon Brown faced an unprecedented barrage of criticism over his role in the UK financial crisis amid claims he was responsible for massive gaps in the regulatory system and that he failed to maintain stability in the country’s finances. (Scotsman page 8, Herald page 1, Telegraph page 1, Guardian page 6)

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 Offshore Wind Farms: More than 1000 giant turbines could be built in the seas around Scotland; it has been announced, as green energy firms have been invited to begin the process of planning to build six gigawatts of offshore wind farms. (Scotsman page 13)

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 Bonuses: The UK Government yesterday publicly hardened its position on bank executive bonuses saying it will be ‘very very robust’ in clamping down on bonuses for 2008 on banks in which it holds shares. (Guardian page 1, FT page 1, Times page 1)

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 Crime

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Gun Control: Control over firearms law is set to be handed from Westminster to Holyrood under a controversial plan that could finally lead to an airgun ban in Scotland. (Scotland on Sunday page 9)

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 Murder Rates: The murder rate in Scotland is the fastest rising in Western Europe and the sixth fastest in the world, according to a shocking new report by the United Nations. The murder rate stands at 2.1 deaths per 100,000 people. (Sunday Times page 1, Herald page 7, Telegraph page 10, Press and Journal page 10, Courier page 14, Daily Express page 4)

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 Education

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Independent Schools: Independent schools in Scotland are cutting staff and delaying building projects as they brace themselves for many parents removing children from private schools due to the effects of the recession. (Scotsman page 1)

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 Politics

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Salmond/Brown: Alex Salmond is to have his first face-to-face meeting with Gordon Brown for 10 months as he responds to criticism that he has deliberately forged a destructive relationship with Westminster. (Scotland on Sunday page 2, Courier page 11)

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 SNP Policies: Eddie Barnes comments in Scotland on Sunday on the future of the SNP and what can be expected after the fall of the local income tax plan. (Page 13)

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 Border Control: Passport controls would be introduced at Gretna and Berwick to restrict the movement of people into England if Scotland voted for independence, Westminster is reported to have warned. (Sunday Times page 3)

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Independence: Alex Salmond has reportedly accused David Cameron of dropping Tory opposition to an independence referendum and claimed the Unionist parties are at ‘sixes and sevens’ over the issue. (Telegraph page 7)

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 ID Cards: The Scottish Government denounced Westminster plans for identity cards as ‘unacceptable’. In a strongly worded letter to the Home Office, Community Safety Minister Fergus Ewing said the Scottish Government remained ‘completely opposed’ to the scheme. (Courier page 9)

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