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(generated from captions) one of two victims Double murder - a promising boxer on a Sydney street. of a deadly gun attack Sydney, but not everyone's happy. A new hospital announced for northern

batters north-western Australia. Wild west - Cyclone Glenda And moon shadow - plunged into darkness vast regions of the world by a total eclipse of the sun. This program is captioned live. Good evening. Under orders from the Commissioner, a major crackdown on gun crime senior police have promised in Sydney's west. following a double murder on a Granville street last night. Two men were gunned down had been convicted of manslaughter One of them, an up-and-coming boxer, seven years ago. just three months ago. He turned professional COMMENTATOR: Look at this. on the big time. And Bassam Chami had his sights What an impressive debut. The 26-year-old was to feature to the Mundine-Green bout in May in a lead-up fight and trained at this gym. big day, his wedding this Sunday. And he was preparing for another Bas Chami! along with his friend Ibrahim Assad - Last night - in a Granville street. he died in a hail of bullets a confrontation in the street. We do believe they resulted from was carrying a concealed pistol, And he revealed one of the dead men but hadn't used it. walked out to see what was going on. I just heard five shots and the police were here, In a matter of moments the helicopters were here. It was just chaos. was seen leaving the scene. A dark-coloured BM A dark-coloured BMW

a car matching that description About three hours later shooting at neighbouring Guildford. was seen speeding from a drive-by know if the two attacks are linked. No-one was injured and police don't group of men converged at the scene, Following the double murder, a large inmate Mamdouh Habib. including former Guantanamo Bay He was questioned by police. he's not linked to the attack. They say Eight years ago, over the stabbing death of a man Bassam Chami was charged

during a fight at an Auburn hotel. Already this year, of guns being fired in public places there have been 22 incidents in Sydney, in south-western suburbs. most of them Police admit it's time to crack down. We certainly are at a point and better efforts than we have. that we need to make bigger Nina Stevens, National Nine News. The State Government today confirmed last night - the story we broke exclusively for Sydney's northern suburbs that it's planning a new hospital at Frenchs Forest. has brought anger But the announcement of Mona Vale Hospital. They claim it spells the end the acute care hospital will be built Due for completion in four years, and the Wakehurst Parkway. at the intersection of Warringah Road will now proceed to take place. The detailed clinical planning

will be determined The configuration of services in the clinical planning process.

of scenic Mona Vale Hospital A process that'll decide the future or closed altogether. amid fears it'll be downgraded is flogging off the land What they're after from day one, and that's what they've wanted to do and bugger the community. The people of the Northern Beaches have been shafted, because we do need two hospitals. to come out and tell us They haven't had the courage at Mona Vale - and you know why? what services are going to be if they do, we'll explode. 'Cause they know, But the Member for Manly says all the services the peninsula needs. the new hospital will deliver for everyone on the Northern Beaches It should be viewed as a big win from Manly through to Palm Beach. where the... It is situated geographically of the Northern Beaches. the demographic centre opposing the Frenchs Forest site say But furious residents heart of the Northern Beaches it's nowhere near the demographic and claim it was chosen

on Royal North Shore Hospital. simply to ease the burden

What they're trying to do community of the Northern Beaches. is not deliver health to the They are all about that is Royal North Shore. bailing out the basket case

the Minister was forced to concede. A point relief to Royal North Shore. Well, it certainly will provide Adam Walters, National Nine News. to 65% of his body A firefighter who suffered burns eight years ago in the Wingello bushfires a further 12 months has been told he must now wait for surgery on his knee. a long time for elective surgery. I just want to know why it's such by the Government Frank Pritchett was promised following the disaster that he'd be supported in every way. The Opposition says has jumped by 4,000 the waiting list for elective surgery in just one month. the West Australian coast, Cyclone Glenda has just crossed bringing winds of more than 175km/h. of Onslow and Exmouth, It made landfall near the towns south of Karratha, is being lashed by heavy rain but the whole of the Pilbara coast and destructive winds. The latest now in Karratha. from the Nine Network's Grant Taylor As you can no doubt see, has well and truly descended Cyclone Glenda of Karratha. on the Pilbara mining town But I have to tell you, of relief here there is an overwhelming sense in the town at the moment going to be spared the direct hit because it looks like we're the town was facing last night. that emergency services had feared described as destructive Apparently experiencing wind gusts and 150km/h. somewhere between 120km/h the barrel of winds up to 250km/h Now we had been looking down on the towns of Karratha and Dampier. had there been a direct hit is expected to stay on red alert, The town itself since about 3:00 this morning, which we've been on well into tonight. residents have to stay in their home. That basically means that local around the streets. There's a ban on travel for their own safety - That's pretty much when there could be powerlines down, they don't want people out as well as other debris sheets of tin flying around, in loss of life. which could potentially result That's all from now here in Karratha. Back to the studio. 15 students have apparently overdosed on drugs at a high school north of Brisbane. The 13- and 14-year-olds are thought to have taken Ritalin, commonly used to treat attention deficit disorder. Some of the students collapsed in class shortly after lunch. Several had reportedly taken up to 15 of the tablets.

They were taken to hospital. None is in a serious condition. The Prime Minister has promised to block moves that would give same-sex unions the same status as marriages in Canberra.

John Howard says legislation introduced by the Government of the ACT would undermine the institution of marriage, and he will not allow it. Chief Minister of the ACT John Stanhope has put forward legislation

that would allow same-sex couples to enter into civil unions at ceremonies presided over by licensed marriage celebrants.

As far as the Prime Minister is concerned, that would simply be gay marriage by another name, and it's not on. There is a special place in Australian society for the institution of marriage as historically understood and we do not intend to allow that to be in any way undermined. If necessary, Mr Howard is prepared to pass special legislation to stop Canberra becoming the gay marriage capital as well as the national capital. An angry Mr Stanhope calls that discrimination. I am saddened that the Commonwealth Parliament believes that gay and lesbian couples don't deserve equality. Gay and lesbian activists are outraged. It's certainly discrimination. There's no reason that giving rights to same-sex couples will somehow diminish the effect of marriage. If you go through this bill, time and time again you will find references to a civil union being equated with marriage. We're not going to make marriage celebrants available for these ceremonies. Mr Stanhope says if Mr Howard tries to bring down federal legislation to override the territory law there should be a conscience vote. But that is unlikely. The Territory Chief Minister is not even guaranteed the support The Caucus will have a chance to think about it. Foreign Minister Alexander Downer and Deputy Prime Minister Mark Vaile have been asked to provide statements about the wheat-for-oil kickback scandal to the Cole inquiry. Inquiry lawyers have written to the ministers asking them to provide statutory declarations. The operators of Sydney Airport have defended a ban on cars waiting outside the domestic arrivals terminal. Critics claim it's another cynical grab for money by forcing drivers to use the airport's parking lot but the operators say it will prevent a traffic bottleneck.

Like it or not, it's set in concrete. From tomorrow, the 2-minute waiting time will be abolished.

It may not have been much to collect a family returning from holiday with all that luggage, but it was better than nothing. What do we do? You've got to pick your friends up, don't you? Just be quick about it. You'll be allowed to stop for only the amount of time it takes for passengers and luggage to be loaded. Being dropped off is already a race against time, Airport management says the no-waiting rule is an inevitable result of increased security and congestion - too many people using the pick-up zone as a carpark. They could stay off the airport for a period of time until they get a call from the passenger they're picking up or they could do some circuits around the area. Or they could use the parking station -

$6 minimum charge - or join the endless cab queue - $2 airport charge on top of the fare. What, am I supposed to catch a taxi every time? 10 minutes, OK? The most practical solution - the mobile phone - one for the person being picked up, the other for the person doing the picking up - that and a fair bit of coordination. It's a bit of a complex operation. It's a jungle out here. Peter Harvey, National Nine News. A huge slice of the earth has witnessed a daytime blackout over a vast stretch of territory. The solar eclipse started in South America and ended on the border between Russia and Mongolia - a distance of 14,500km.

An eerie sky show today for half the world to see as the moon moved between planet earth and the sun. In a flash, blazing daylight became darkness - a shadow cast over Brazil, West Africa, Turkey, Central Asia and Mongolia - the spectacle stopping millions in their tracks. It's not every generation that has an opportunity to do that.

The rare total eclipse of the sun drew scientists and tourists alike, the most devoted roughing it in the deserts of Libya and Egypt for an experience which lasted just four minutes. A total eclipse of the sun is a very rare and awesome event and you're changed afterwards when you've seen a total eclipse. NASA handed out protective glasses to prevent eye damage. From the International Space Station it recorded these pictures - the black smudge, the moon's shadow seen from above. Ancient mythology's explanation for an eclipse

was a dragon devouring the sun. During the partial phases, you begin to see bites taken out of the sun. The last time it happened was in November 2003. And for those who missed out today, including Australia, the next eclipse is just two years away. Christine Spiteri, National Nine News.

Sydneysiders got their chance to congratulate the home-grown heroes of the Commonwealth Games team today at a civic reception at the Town Hall. Dual gold medal athlete John Steffensen and silver medal walker Natalie Saville were among those handed the keys to the city. I have to support the people who supported me on TV and in the crowd and I think it was very important I was here today.

After the reception, the athletes were in demand with the small but enthusiastic crowd. In the news ahead, the NSW town put on the heritage list. The boy who risked his life to save a dog. And the wax prince who can melt a young girl's heart. Beaurepaires Easter Bonus - and we'll give you a bonus $60 voucher you can use on shopping. FUEL PUMPS Or petrol. Hurry - ends April 29. SONG: # Beaurepaires. # Lucy Brogden, the wife of former opposition leader John Brogden, has had a baby, a brother for their 2-year-old son Flinders. Mr Brogden resigned from Parliament last August following an apparent suicide attempt. The whole 1830s gold town of Braidwood, between Canberra and the South Coast, has been listed on the State Heritage register. It's the first NSW town to receive the honour. I'm very happy because I think we need to treat our heritage as a frozen story when it's really beautiful. A series of compromises were made before today's announcement for some residents who fear the listing will restrict progress. In medical news, funding has been approved for a breakthrough transplant program which could bring a cure for Type 1 diabetes. The condition affects 140,000 children and adults, who currently face numerous complications. Trying to understand what food they can or cannot have is a daily dilemma

for children with Type 1 diabetes - a condition where the body suddenly stops producing insulin, essential for breaking down sugar and carbohydrates. We can have what's called a 'hypo'. Our blood sugar levels drop low and we can pass out. They rely on insulin injections or a pump to survive - lives revolving around measuring blood sugar levels. I do finger pricks and every three days I have to change my line for my pump. And I count carbs and go down to the front office to do that at recess and lunch at school. But from today there's a promising new future - $30 million for a transplant program that takes insulin-producing cells, called islet cells, from donors. These are then injected into the liver and start producing insulin immediately, This isn't just about treatment. This is about a potential cure. The procedure has been trialled on only six Australians. Now the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation,

three institutes and the Government will set up an Australian islet transplant network, and research solutions for rejection problems. Courtney Pitson's hypos often need urgent hospital treatment. A cure would change her life forever. Thank you, everybody. Sheryl Taylor, National Nine News. A Canadian boy has risked his life to save his dog, becoming trapped himself on the edge of a 30m cliff. 12-year-old Cody Bohnert comforted the dog as an abseiler came to save him and the pet, which, appropriately, is named Chaos. The dog was put in a bag to stop it struggling and they were taken back to safety. Cody's courage has put him in demand. I have a lot more than 15 minutes of fame. I have more like half an hour of fame. He already has bookings for talk shows, after proving that he's a dog's best friend. In Britain, And making his debut at Madame Tussaud's, Prince Harry. The wax dummy stands beside big brother William, and Prince Charles. across the hall from the Queen and Prince Charles

The gallery says there have been many requests for a Harry figure, but they decided to wait until the prince turned 21. Ken with sport is next, and a hitch for Parramatta as they attempt to re-sign Jamie Lyon. It's hard fitting two star centres within the salary cap. Also, coach Nathan Brown extends his deal with the Dragons. And the Swans about to fly south to defend their premiership title. SONG: # Yeah, yeah # Yeah, yeah. # To see more of what you're missing, We can reveal tonight that Parramatta's outstanding young centre Ben Smith is about to sign a lucrative new deal with the Eels. Smith's signature will make it very difficult for Parramatta to lure Jamie Lyon back to the club. His form last year had earmarked him as an Origin player of the future, so it's no surprise the Eels have moved quickly to keep Smith at the club. And when Smith signs, the hopes of luring Lyon back from St Helens will fade, not that the Eels players will mind too much. His decision to walk out on the club didn't go down well, but you won't hear a direct admission. If he wants to come back, I've got no worries about it. Yeah, if he can get a spot over Tim Smith - I mean Ben Smith,

and Timana Tahu, he'd be pretty doing well. To have three centres like that - that'd be nice to have. Yeah, wouldn't it? Oh, we can put him at fullback.

Manly boss Pat Wilson strongly denied claims his club has been in negotiations with Lyon, even calling Parramatta boss Denis Fitzgerald to sort out the matter. I assured him that we've done nothing untoward. I mean, we got signed off from the NRL yesterday. Seven clubs have already expressed an interest in signing Lyon. One thing that is certain - he won't be staying with St Helens. According to his manager, George Mimis, he's already told the club he wants to come home. At the Dragons, Nathan Brown has extended his contract with the club until the end of 2008 - a move that will increase pressure on him to deliver the club a title. I'm sure there'll be some people happy and some disappointed, but it's, ah - you know, we've improved each year, and last year -

everyone says how bad a year it was, but we ran equal first at the end of the year

with Parramatta. Danny Weidler, National Nine News. The AFL season starts tonight with West Coast taking on St Kilda, while Sydney's title defence begins on Saturday night in Melbourne against Essendon.

While the Swans are the reigning premiers, they'll start this season anything but favourites. The red-and-whites are well in the black

when it comes to betting on this year's race for the AFL flag. St Kilda and Geelong will start as early favourites, while the defending premiers are at the rather juicy odds of 8-1. I think the level of respect is very, very high. There's no question about that. I think people are a bit surprised,? a bit unsure about how we did it. That's probably the reason why we are at long odds. The Swans played Essendon in two preseason games and were beaten on both occasions. Impressive during those trials was former Bomber Ted Richards, who'll debut against his old club this Saturday night at Telstra Dome.

It's a bit weird, but we've played them quite a few times in preseason. So, in terms of that,

it's kind of been good to get the cobwebs out of it that way but, you know, I guess we're playing real time now. In Rugby Union, the Waratahs will carry wounded forwards Dan Vickerman and Phil Waugh into tomorrow's Super 14 match against new South African franchise the Cheetahs. Vickerman is struggling with a calf muscle injury. A jarred knee and minor foot injury will see Waugh start off the bench for the first time in his 75-match career.

It's a good thing

because Stephen Hall is a good chance to start the game and with the depth we've got in the back row

it's something we can afford to do. Andrew McKinlay, National Nine News.

In that ongoing soap opera, Peter

Holmes a Court has now had his ban

lifted on entering the South Sydney

club. Benji Marshall is the special

guest on the 'Footy Show' tonight,

he's not banned from anywhere. After the break, finance and Jaynie with the weather. Then, arise, Sir Tom.

In finance, Standard & Poor's estimates that insurers are facing losses of up to $400 million from Cyclone Larry - similar to the cost of the Canberra bushfires. On the markets, insurance stocks fell. The Commonwealth Bank was firmer Thanks, Mark. Good evening, everyone. Rain and storms for Sydney tonight. We have already had 20mm over Campbelltown Just about anywhere in Sydney could pick up 20mm, including Warragamba Dam. The central and northern inland areas of our State have seen up to 30mm today.

A severe thunderstorm warning is in force for the Central West Plains, Riverina and South-West Slopes. But torrential rain of over 130mm is pouring in north-west WA from severe Tropical Cyclone Glenda - Category 4 - with destructive winds of 130km/h between Karratha and Onslow. Showers easing tomorrow with storms heading to the north-east. Cyclone Glenda will generate flooding rain and gale-force winds

across the Pilbara and Gascoyne regions. Showers easing in Canberra tomorrow. Wet and windy for Melbourne. Hobart - showers, mountain snow. Fine in Perth. Storms for Darwin and Brisbane. Sunrise a little after 7:00am. Our showers will hang around tomorrow, set to clear by lunchtime. Winds will be light, turning nor-nor-west later in the day. Sunset close to 7:00pm. 25 degrees across the board. 18 for the mountains, where we have seen a few millimetres today. A strong front is due in tomorrow night, bringing temperatures this weekend into the low 20s but staying mostly dry. Warragamba has dropped a bit this week, now at 41.3% capacity. Bring on the rain! Mark. It might be bad for business, but Tom Jones is officially respectable. The hip-grinding sex symbol has been knighted by the Queen under his real name. He is now Sir Thomas Woodward and he says it's a great and humbling honour. She asked me how long had I been in the business now, 'cause she knew it was a long time, since the '60s, and I told her 41 years, successfully. So now it's sex bomb Sir Tom and, at 65, women are still lining up for a hug. Now, something new tonight that could put you in the news. We're introducing Nine Newswatch. If you capture a news event or photo on your mobile phone or digital camera, send it to us. Pictures and video can go to 0405 999 999 or Nine Newswatch at: or through our Internet site ninemsn. Become a citizen journalist through Nine Newswatch. And that's National Nine News for this Thursday. I'm Mark Ferguson. Goodnight.