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Live. Game on. Australia firmly

back in Ashes contention with

back in Ashes contention with a

resounding win at the Alan

Kohler WACA. Australia are back in the series. Also today - Tony Abbott pushes for tougher immigration policies to prevent any league player John Hopoate

charged with assault. Another cold snap

cold snap in Europe causing Christmas holiday chaos Australians. Christmas holiday chaos for

It is 4 o'clock in Sydney and

Melbourne. 1 o'clock in

Perth. Live across Australia, you are watching ABC News 24.

I'm Nick Dole. Australia I'm Nick Dole. Australia has

comprehensive Ashes series with a this afternoon levelled the

comprehensive 267-run win Ashes series with

England in the Third Test in comprehensive 267-run win over

Perth. The England in the Third Test in England

just 50 minutes on day four to Perth. The Australians took

claim the final five English wickets. Ryan Harris took 123 at the WACA. Mitchell to help finish off England for

Johnson was named man of the match after and scoring half century. ABC Grandstand and scoring a first-innings

joins me from Perth. It commentator Glenn Mitchell

joins me from Perth. It was Ricky Ponting's birthday in the end was he couldn't be out on the Australia won. He tested out on the ground when

slight fracture in the finger of his sustained yesterday while attempting to take a catch. He was in considerable pain had was in considerable pain and

sidelines with Michael sidelines with Michael Clarke taking over the captaincy. It

was a Australia today. Career-best both Mike Hussey and Shane Watson with the bat. There has been a tremendous shift momentum in this series and now is on the back foot heading to

boxing Day where we will have a week today a world record crowd

to watch the talk about Mitchell Johnson.

What an amazing

What sort of confidence will

of attack and for him? It that do for the team in terms

gives Ricky Ponting or three

genuine spear head. Having

said that we need to keep in mind we have seen flashes from

Mitchell Johnson like this in the past, as recently as 20

months ago

where he de stated with bat and

ball. The way he was the ball through bowl with genuine pace and move

don't think it would matter what

what quality of batsman you had, that is the most difficult are playing fast bowling to face. If you are playing for the ball to come back into you, going to knick it to the slips. Ryan Harris on what was his a weak field it must be said

6/47 for him. They got nine wickets

wickets a piece. If Johnson can replicate can replicate this form over

the next 2.5 weeks in both you will find the Ashes Melbourne and Sydney I think

fact, after what we saw in Adelaide, may return down under. What much pressure, standout performance today, standout performance today, but do you think this will reduce

given his some of the pressure on him

notch? The thing with Ricky this match hasn't been top

Ponting it is more long term

than just this recent match where he had dual

you go back to last has averaged 39 in Test crickets. If those captain for anyone other than the

captain of the Australian team, he may have been shown in Australia door. He is stilt the best man

door. He is stilt the best captain the in Australia at the moment to amazed if he doesn't take

amazed if he doesn't take to

the field with pain-killers and

whatever for boxing Day. He

will be the man Australia will

be gook r looking to step on

the throat of of England over the next two catches. Today is

151st test and if

151st test and if he wins in Melbourne next week, if he will

play, it will be his 100th victory as an player. It will be victory as an Australian Test

player. It will be a world

record. It gives you an idea

of how dominant his team was at

one stage. After the last

couple of days, Australia has turned things around and it

will shock many in the cricket

world, none more so than

world, none more so than the

members and the scribes in the

press who had Australia dead

and buried. We are looking forward to the G. Divers working with the Australian

Federal police are continuing

to search for victims of the to search for victims of

Christmas Island asylum Christmas Island asylum seeker

on the boat which broke up and tragedy. Up to 100 people

sank on rocks on Wednesday.

So far 72 have been accounted

for. 42 survivors and 30

confirmed deaths. The for. 42 survivors and 30

Australian Maritime Safety

Authority says expert medical

advice indicates it is impossible anyone else survived advice indicates it is now

impossible anyone else survived

the accident. Divers have been

cliffs at Rocky looking around and under the

another victim - for more

victims I should say but

Customs says the death toll

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott remains unchanged. The Federal

says tougher immigration

policies need to be introduced. policies need to be gently

introduced. Mr Abbott spoke

about the Christmas Island

shipwreck for the first time

today after his return from a

trip overseas. The sad truth is

that as long as the people smuggling smuggling trade exists, as long as the boats keep coming, the

That's why it is important that risk of disaster remains.

we put

we put policies in place as

that do offer the prospect of quickly as humanly possible

stopping the boats. stopping the boats. Now, it is absolutely urgent that we put policies in place that deny

the people smugglers a product

to sell. The Coalition to sell. The Coalition for many months now has been many months now has been urging the Government to adopt

policies which have

policies which have been proven

to work. They worked in the to work. They worked in the past and there is no reason why they they can't work again in the

future. Speaking on behalf of

the Opposition, I want to say that we stand ready to that we stand ready to work constructively with the

Government but we have got to

work towards policies that will

actually stop the boats. The

policies that we have been talking about

talking about for many months now. The Opposition Tony Abbott there. The Federal Immigration Minister Tony Abbott there. The

Chris Bowen says the Opposition

is again resorting to its 'Stop

He says the claim the

He says the claim the Nauru detention centre can be opened easily is false. The Liberal Party position is a detention centre ready and

waiting at Nauru. There is not. The detention centre at Nauru

closed. Half of it is a school, other parts have been dismantled and moved around the island. to open the Nauru facility.

Of course, at Nauru 90% of the people processed at Nauru ended up at So people smugglers and asylum seeker know that.

seeker know that. They know

the offshore processing the offshore processing centre is no disincentive for coming to different approach. different approach. Mr Abbott has today slogan of stopping the boats. He has reiterated their policy of temporary We have a different approach. Our apreach is an international agreement to break the smugglers policy. I note recently the Liberal recently the Liberal Party has agreed an approach is appropriate, approach is appropriate, that an international approach is the people smugglers business

model. I note today the UN

refugee representative refugee representative in Australia has reiterated Australia has reiterated their view that an international approach is appropriate. domestic approach is not focused obvious international solution and that remains a key priority. on the line now from Christmas Island. Andrew, I understand you have come from the media conference with the

Superintendent Gavin Ryan who is the police forward is the police forward commander here on Christmas Island

given a media conference and

probably probably the most interesting thing to come out of it is he

believes the death toll is greater than the 30

been found been found in the past 48 hours

despite the continuing search of underwater caves by police divers around the coast, been interviewing survives trying to establish how many

people were on the boat. We

have been dealing with

estimates of as low as 70 and

as high as 100. We didn't know.

The superintendent continue couldn't give us a revised

number today, so he believes it is greater than the is greater than the 70

accounted for. Combined with

the Australian Maritime Safety

Authority's advice yesterday it

is a medical impossibility

somebody to still be alive somebody to still be alive if they are in the open ocean, that means he believes there

are more bodies in the water

and the divers are

their kch for them. - search

for them. Based on the

information he has at this time he is confident that the AFP

will be able to give a definitive number, perhaps as early early as tomorrow, but he wouldn't be drawn on what

prospect there now is, whether he had any optimism of finding

the victims. How is the

recovery effort going itself? Initially there was terrible weather on the island. From the pictures we are seeing now,

it looks better. Is that

aiding people in the recovery effort at all? effort at all? Certainly it

is. In the first couple of days it was

it was difficult to get it was difficult to get the divers into the water but the

last couple of days, the weather has been relatively

benign here. There is a team of

three divers that have come

from the WA police force. They are are trained specifically for

this type of work. As you can imagine, exploring underwater

caves in an area where the

scape can change quickly is dangerous and difficult work

but the superintendent says

these fellows are ideally

equipped to carry this out. They have spent the last two

days doing that. They are

doing it in a painstaking and

methodical way but they have

not found a single victim. What

about memorial services? We heard yesterday some were

being today. That's right. Immigration authorities have

begun what they say will be a

series of religious services

starting today in one of the

detention centres. They

say when or where exactly it is happening. But happening. But today's memorial service is the way

they have characterised it will be for the survives of the shipwreck. It will be to help them come together and grief

and honour those who are lost.

The service will be confined to

survivors but the Immigration Department says in the services in other detention

centres, probably conducted by

a local Imam for the other asylum seekers. Because, as we have seen with protests and talk of unrest inside the detention centres, this is having a much bigger effect

beyond that immediate circle of

42 survivesors. We will leave it there. Thanks for your

time. That was ABC reporter Andrew O'Connor reporting live from Christmas Island. To other

news, John Hopoate, the former

rugby league player has faced

court for assaulting a man Sydney nightclub. Police say

the 36-year-old was the 36-year-old was working on

the door of the Trademark Hotel

in Kings Cross last night. It

is alleged a fight broke out. Hopoate has been charged with

saulting one of the men and he

has been given conditional bail

to appear in court again next

month. The incident came on the

second night of a nationwide police crackdown alcohol-fuelled disorder.

Hundreds of extra police have

for operation Unite. Last

night police in Sydney targeted

brawls and drunken behaviour.

brawls and drunken behaviour. More than 700 people were arrested across NSW as part of

the crackdown. In Victoria,

more than 240 people were

arrested over the weekend with

27 booked for assault. The operation ends today, though

police do expect to make arrests as Christmas celebrations continue. A flood rescue operation

involving several aircraft is

under way near Gascoyne junction near helicopters and a plane have

been sent to retrieve 20 been sent to retrieve 20 people

stranded on their roofs in Carnarvon. Authorities are monitoring the suburb of east Carnarvon looking at a

potential evacuation. The WA Premier, Colin Barnett, says he

may visit the region tomorrow

to assess the losses. The

Gascoyne River has reached a record level of 7.7m in

record level of 7.7m in

Carnarvon. Overseas now and

in the US, gays and lesbians will soon be able to will soon be able to serve

openly in the military after a

Senate vote ended Ask, Don't Tell' policy. The

controversial law allowed gay

members of the armed forces to

serve, only if they kept their sexual orientation a

After two fails attempts to get

the repeal through the Senate,

the Democrats secured a handful

of Republicans by a vote of 63 to

to 33. The

is looking forward to signing the bill is looking the bill into law next week. Most of the

said it will be too disruptive at at a time of war. I hope when we pass this legislation we

will understand we are doing

will understand we are doing

great damage and possibly and probably, as a

commandant of the marine Corp said and I have been told by thousands in the military, harm the battle effective ness which is vital to survival of our young men and women in the military. Julian women in the military. Julian Assange has denounced what Assange has denounced what he calls business McCarthyism calls business McCarthyism in the United States after the bank of America halted all transactions to the web The Australian has whistleblowing site will carry on diplomatic cables despite insisting his life is threat. Bank of America is one of several institutions

that have refused to payments for the web site since

it starteded to publish the documents last month. Qantas has confirmed four Australian-bound flights to

depart from

been delayed due to weather in Europe. Freezing temperatures and record snowfalls affected air, road and rail transport in the

France and Italy. Johanna McDiarmid reports. A band of

McDiarmid reports. A band of thick snow sweeping London has London has forced the city's main airports to close airways. hundreds of drivers were

stranded. A61 is closed, the M6 is closed. Every is grid locked. It has

authorities to tell authorities to tell motorists to be prepared.S Make sure you have plenty of fuel so

have plenty of fuel so if you

do get stuck on a motor you can leave the engine rining with a Northern Ireland witnessed Northern Ireland witnessed its heaviest snowfall in 25 years. Up to 60cm fell in parts

country side. Belfast fast international airport has been opened opened after a closure. It is

out of our out of our hands. We will do our best Germany, heavy snowfall major disruptions major disruptions and scores of accidents accidents that killed at least two people. In Scotland the Arctic freeze brought

widespread chaos with the

closure of many closure of many roads. Warnings for many snow remain in place across Northern Ireland,

across Northern Ireland, Wales, Scotland

The top stories we following this afternoon - the

Australian cricket team has levelled

levelled the levelled the Ashes after a 267-run victory in the Third Test. England was dismissed for

for 123 on the fourth day after

Ryan Harris took a career six wickets. Tony Abbott is

calling for the calling for the Nauru detention

centre to be reopened to

prevent a repeat of last week's

asylum asylum boat disaster. Former

rugby league rugby league player John

Hopoate has faced court for

allegedly assaulting a man

while working as a bouncer at at tomorrow's weather -

Kidnapping, torture Kidnapping, torture and bombings are

Eight years after the invasion

of Iraq, the battle for the control of streets. Although the level

of sectarian violence country has fallen, many live

in fears. Souad Abdullah is in fears. Souad Abdullah is a recluse living small flat. In February of

2006 her son was snatched 2006 her son was snatched from the streets of Baghdad. His kidnappers called her on phone, they made phone, they made her listen while while they tortured him. She paid a paid a ransom but they killed him anyway. TRANSLATION: I am

afraid to step outside my because they may shoot me. I want Shootings,

bombings, these are the kinds

of crime the Iraqi police have

to face as they go about their

daily duties. Today's scuffles

are part of a training

exercise. It is run by exercise. It is run by American

soldiers - they are the ones in they are finding themselves on the receiving end of rough

treatment, that's good news for

the Iraqi security forces. the Iraqi security forces. But many commanders privately admit it will be a challenge to get

them ready in time for the US withdrawal at the end of withdrawal at the end of next year.

Baghdad is a place where life has returned to some sort of

normalty. But look carefully,

you will see the cause of the

con jest yn. Hundreds of police and military check points dot the city. People live their lives surrounded by

concrete blast walls. Every

time you go out into the street, somewhere in the back

of your mind you wonder of your mind you wonder where

the next bomb will go off. Life will be

will be like this when the

Americans leave next year, many believe it will be like this

for years to come. Time for

sport with Claire Aird. As we

have been hearing this

afternoon, some good news for

once. Now we have a real once. Now we have a real

contest on boxing Day which contest on boxing Day which is nice. The home side levels with a comprehensive 267-run

victory. The Australians took

just under an hour to claim the

final five English wickets. With Ricky Ponting out injured, the Australians were under the

watchful eye of advice captain

Michael Clarke. Ryan Harris

took four wickets today starting with James Anderson.

He struck again to dismiss Ian

Bell and Matt Prior who was brilliantly caught by Mike Hussey. Mitchell Johnson

continued the onslaught

continued the onslaught sending

Graeme Swann back to for six. It was all over when

Steven Finn was caught by Steve

Smith. Let's listen to the

captains after the match. A

lot of people didn't believe me

after we

couple of games. We have played the cricket I know we are

capable of. We didn't get off

to an ideal start, I think Hussey and Haddin and Johnson's

batting on that first day was

the difference in the game in

the end. We have set the game up day one, up day one, then Johnson's

spell day two was one of the all-time greatest in all-time greatest in Ashes history. That set it up. Cricket is a funny game. Cricket is a funny game. We

are disappointed with our game.

We were in a good position after bowling

after bowling Australia out.

A good spell of bowling by Mitchell Johnson brought

Australia back into the game. Once they were in front, they never let

never let us back in. To

has Sheffield Shield and Tasmania

has won by 10 wickets on in Hobart. NSW have declared 9/458 two of their clash against NSW have declared 9/458 on day

Queensland in Blacktown. The

Bulls were 1/22. Play has

resumed between SA and Victoria

in Adelaide after rain

disrupted the opening session.

The Redbacks were leading by 26

runs a short time ago. To the

A-League now and Gold Coast

crowd during today's match inspiration from a massive home United will look to

against the Central Coast

Mariners. More than 20,000

free tickets have been given

away for the game. Brisbane

Roar has moved 10 points clear

at the top of the table after a

2-0 win of North Queensland in

Townsville last night. Glory beat beat the Victory. European

champions Inter Milan has won the the Club World Cup brushing aside the Congolese side

Mazambe. Rafael sighed the initiative. Mazambe. Rafael Benitez

Eto'o turned and struck sighed the initiative. Samuel

Eto'o turned and struck from

the edge of the box making it

two and sealing the result.

Beeb beeb beeb gave the Italian

- bib bib bib their third title. The under-fire title. The under-fire manager

was happy. You have on the players more quality and it is a

question of just time to see

them 100% physical. Now we play

really well with the confidence League has been area. The English Premier

affected by poor weather League has been severely

sweeping across the country

with four matches post overnight and three falling foul of the weather.

Two matches did go Two matches did go ahead. first half trike to thank for win at home to

west ham remained win at home to Bolton while

despite an equaliser to Blackburn.

This evening is one match to

they easier for the Sydney kings as

with the reigning champions the

wrap-up from the Ashes next Let's have a look at the weather. Looking at the satellite image, cloid over the Northern Territory is causing moving over

moving over the potentially severe storms. Pshs Around the States now rain and thunderstorms are expected across the tropics in heavy falls. It should mostly dry in the regions. To NSW, mostly mostly dry in the southern

with a few isolated showers around the south. Isolated morning snow showers on the

alps. Scattered alps. Scattered showers in

southern and mountain areas Victoria. Isolated showers clearing north-west To Tasmania - fine in the

elsewhere. A cool day on the

way with light to moderate south to south-west can expect scattered showers south to south-west winds. SA

over the southern agricultural

thunderstorms and hail over the south-east. A cool to mild day

with moderate south-west south-east winds. Isolated with moderate south-west to

showers the east of WA showers in the south-west. the east of WA and scattered

Further showers and Further north, monsoonal

Looking ahead to Brisbane and Looking ahead to Tuesday, fine, Melbourne Brisbane and Sydney should be two, fine, Melbourne a shower or

Adelaide two, showers for Hobart.

shower. Perft is in for showers

settling into her new role as a working royal and she working royal and she has accompanied her fiancie Prince William to a

is her first public since the announcement of their is her first public appearance

royal engagement last month.

The Prince was guest of honour for an event for teenage cancer

at Norfolk. The at Norfolk. The couple will be married on April 29. I

will be back with the news at the top of the hour.

(Theme music) In this episode of Stateline Summer Tasmania -

West coast towns missing the mining boom. Prisoners given a chance that I never even knew existed. She's brought out qualities in me Welcome to Staleline Summer Tasmania, the year's best stories where we look back at some of

from around the State. I'm Airlie Ward. discovered more than 100 years ago. they had thriving communities Until recently, and a character all their own. an effect on the towns has had just as devastating as a drop in the ore price. in the industry's fortunes, Despite talk of a recovery