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Relationship Property Bill – Race Relations Merger – Treaty Clause – South Pacific Forum – Spanish Bombing – Middle East x 2 – Quake – Medical Misadventure – School Water – Jeff Wilson

RELATIONSHIP PROPERTY BILL: Some family and property lawyers say the new Relationships Bill should mean greater certainty for couples when the split. Catriona McLennan says that it will help women in defacto relationships with children. However a spokesperson for Divorce Equity says it will take certainty away.

RACE RELATIONS MERGER: The Associate Minister of Justice Margaret Wilson says the government is considering amalgamating the offices of the Human Rights Commissioner and the Race Relations Conciliator.

TREATY CLAUSE: The Health Minister says the government’s intentions in the Treaty Clause of the Health Bill is clear. National want it released now.

SOUTH PACIFIC FORUM: The Foreign Affairs Minister says the South Pacific Forum has taken an important step with its declaration on democracy and human rights. Phil Goff says the declaration has saved the forum from becoming irrelevant.

SPANISH BOMBING: A car bomb blamed on the Spanish separatist group ETA has killed a supreme court judge, his driver and bodyguard in Madrid.

MIDDLE EAST: The Israeli PM Ehud Barak says he believes peace is still possible in the Middle East but that Israel no-longer has a partner for peace. Barak has not yet mentioned an emergency government. The Palestinians have rejected the blame for the break down in the peace process.

MIDDLE EAST: Last night’s clashes on the West Bank were more muted but the violence moved into Israel where an Israeli policeman and civilian died.

QUAKE: An earthquake struck the Wellington region at 5.30am this morning shaking items off shelves on the Kapiti Coast.

MEDICAL MISADVENTURE: ACC believes that taxpayers, hospitals and patients will foot the bill if a levy against medical specialists to pay for medical misadventure claims is imposed.

SCHOOL WATER: The Ministry of Education is dismissing concerns from the Ministry of Health about fecal coliforms in school water supplies. They say the data used by the MOH is out of date.

JEFF WILSON: All Black wing Jeff Wilson will play rugby next season after taking this year off. Wilson says he was fatigued mentally but now wants to play again.

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