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Becky Watts: Family tell of devastation as body parts found

The family of missing teenager Becky Watts have spoken of their devastation after body parts were found in the search for her.

Her distraught father, mother, stepmother, brother and grandparents have all spoken of their pain following the grim discovery made by detectives hunting for the 16-year-old.

They all spoke out as Avon and Somerset Police were granted an extra 24 hours to question a 28-year-old man and a 21-year-old woman on suspicion of murdering Becky.

Four other people - three men and a woman - also remain in custody after being arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender.

Becky's father and stepmother Darren and Anjie Galsworthy said: "To receive such news as we did today about our dear daughter and stepdaughter Becky is too much to bear. We have the support of a good family network to help us in these challenging times. We would ask that you treat Becky with the due reverence and allow us to come to terms with our grief in private."

The teenager's mother Tania Watts, brother Daniel and grandmother Pat said: "We are devastated to be told of this latest development. We are at an utter loss to understand why anyone would want to hurt our beautiful Becky in such a brutal way."

Becky vanished from her home in Crown Hill, St George, Bristol, at around 11.15am on February 19.

She left home with her iPhone, laptop and tablet computer but did not tell friends or family where she was going, or take extra clothing.

She was reported missing at 4pm on February 20 and a large search operation - involving six police teams each day - was launched.

Earlier yesterday, Detective Superintendent Mike Courtiour said that information received by police late on Monday night led them to a house at Barton Court in the Barton Hill area of Bristol where body parts were found.

"The information suggested that Becky's body had been cut up and a search at the new location resulted in the discovery of body parts," he said. "Although formal identification procedures have not yet been completed, we have made Becky's family aware of this discovery."

Cameron child sex abuse crackdown

London: Children in Britain have suffered sexual abuse on an “industrial scale” with the authorities failing to act, David Cameron said.

The Prime Minister called a Downing Street summit to address the issue following a series of child sexual exploitation scandals in areas including Rotherham and Oxfordshire.

He said too many people and organisations had been “walking on by” and failing to tackle the problem.

Senior public officials and councillors who fail to protect children from sexual exploitation will face up to five years in jail under a new criminal offence being considered by the Government as part of the plan to ensure “this stops here”, Mr Cameron said.

Under the proposals unveiled by Mr Cameron and subject to consultation, the crime of “wilful neglect” will be extended to cover children’s social care and education, with unlimited fines for individuals and organisations shown to have let children down.

A new national helpline will be established to help professionals blow the whistle on failings in care for children. And senior staff who leave councils after abuse scandals could see their pay-offs clawed back.

Troops in battle for strategic city

Iraq: Iraqi troops and Shia militias have battled against Islamic State south of the militant-held city of Tikrit, though roadside bombs and suicide attacks slowed their advance on Saddam Hussein’s home town.

The battle for Tikrit, a strategic city along the Tigris River, is likely to be won or lost on allied Iraqi forces’ ability to counter the extremists’ bombs.

Reports suggest extremists from IS, which holds both a third of Iraq and neighbouring Syria in its self-declared caliphate, have littered major roadways and routes with mines. Such mines require painstaking clearing operations.

Suicide bombings also aid the militants in weakening Iraqi forces and have been used extensively in its failed campaign for the Syrian border town of Kobani. Already, a militant website affiliated with IS has said an American jihadi carried out a suicide attack on the outskirts of nearby Samarra.

Yesterday, a suicide bomber drove a military vehicle into a checkpoint manned by government forces and Shia fighters south of Tikrit, killing four troops and wounding 12.

Prime Minister who failed to pay tax admits: I’m not perfect

Portugal: Red-faced prime minister Pedro Passos Coelho has admitted he is “not perfect” after it was revealed he failed to pay his social security contributions during five years before he came to office.

Mr Passos Coelho’s centre-right coalition government launched a crackdown on tax evasion as part of an austerity programme when it took power in 2011, following a €78bn (£56bn) bailout that spared Portugal from bankruptcy.

A newspaper revealed last weekend that he failed to pay almost €4,000(£2,900) in social security from 1999-2004.

The prime minister said he was not aware of the missing payments. He told his Social Democratic Party: “I have my imperfections.”

Thousands pay tribute to murdered Putin opponent

Moscow: Thousands of mourners and dignitaries have filed past the white-lined coffin of murdered Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov as they paid their last respects to one of the most prominent figures of Russia’s beleaguered opposition.

So many came that when the viewing ended after four hours, a line of people hundreds of metres long still waited outside the Sakharov Centre.

Nemtsov was shot dead last Friday while walking near the Kremlin with his girlfriend. No suspects have been arrested.

Boy (9) hit by 10-year-old brother driving stolen car

Michigan: A nine-year-old boy ended up in hospital after his 10-year-old brother apparently ran him over with a stolen car in the US.

Roscommon County sheriff’s department responded early on Sunday after a woman called to report her sons had broken into a car dealership and driven cars in the parking lot.

The boys were turned over to their parents but deputies were called to the boys’ home hours later after the nine-year-old got pinned under a car. Deputies said the boys returned to the dealership, stole cars and drove around.

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