Tuesday Zedlines, April 5th

 QR National will offer 115 voluntary redundancies to Ipswich workers next week, as part of a state-wide redundancy program.

The company, which was privatised from the state run Queensland Rail last year, had previously deferred speculation that jobs would be cut.

Around 75 million dollars are expected to be spent on the program, which is planned to offer redundancies to a total of 600 employees across Queensland.

Food Standards Australia and New Zealand have called for public debate on legalising the sale of hemp seed and oil.

Hemp, which contains little of the psychoactive chemical found in cannabis, is already used in Australia as animal feed.

The FSANZ said there are no associated risks with eating hemp foods, however a previous attempt to legalise hemp was rejected by ministers on the grounds it would increase acceptance of marijuana.

The US has called for the president of Yemen to step down, following the death of 17 protestors at the hands of presidential security forces.

President Ali Abdullah Saleh has resisted calls to resign immediately, as anti-government protests today continue into their third month.

White House spokesman Jay Carney warned Al Qaeda could exploit a power vacuum in Yemen if conflict was not soon resolved.

A Beenleigh man has been found guilty of murdering his former flat mate, in what has been described as a “brutal slaughtering”.

Robert Ian Logan, a self-confessed cannibal, pleaded not guilty in the Supreme Court in Brisbane to murdering Bun Huntingford in 2006.

Logan has been sentenced to life in prison.

A climate change specialist has warned the Great Barrier Reef will be lost if greenhouse gases aren’t drastically cut.

The announcement is a preface to the GREENHOUSE conference, which begins today in Cairns.

The event will run until Friday.

The Centre for Resource and Environmental Management have warned the Northern Territory would face substantial risk from an Indonesian nuclear reactor fallout.

The Indonesian Government have announced plans to build four nuclear generators by 2022. The planned site for the build is close to an earthquake fault line.

Spokesmen have denied the sight is in danger, and said the site would be considerably more modern than the currently damaged Japanese reactors.

Fijian engineers are still working to restore water to thousands of residents after a planned maintenance shut down went wrong.

A new pipe system to improve supply lines was meant to be installed, but ran over schedule, allowing air to disrupt the system.

The system must now remove all air before it can function properly. Water supply is expected to resume by the end of today.

The Gillard government has been criticised for moving too slowly in providing vital infrastructure to remote communities around Australia.

Remote Indigenous Services Coordinator Brian Gleeson says the government should move faster to deliver acceptable facilities for remote communities, with many key promises brought to a standstill.

High on the agenda is an increase in the number of “safe houses”, which support community members suffering from abuse and violence.

Queensland Speaker of the House John Mickel has refused to allow Lord Mayor Campbell Newman to speak in parliament until he is elected to a seat.

Although Mr Newman is the chosen leader of the Liberal National Party, MP Jeff Seeney is the official party leader.

Mr Newman plans to contest the seat of Ashgrove. Premier Anna Bligh has refused to comment on when the next election will be held.


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