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News review – Monday 19 June 2017

Brexit

Times
Germany has offered a soft Brexit with a reduced jurisdiction for EU judges over Britain and continued access to Europe’s single market in return for a British concession on free movement. Sigmar Gabriel, the German foreign minister, suggested yesterday that European countries were willing to make trade-offs in advance of negotiations on Britain’s withdrawal from the EU. Talks begin in Brussels today. “Perhaps there is now a chance to achieve a so-called soft Brexit,” he told Germany’s Welt am Sonntag newspaper yesterday.

Mail
David Davis will tomorrow head to Brussels  with a vow Brexit will definitely happen in a rebuke to the new French president Emmanuel Macron. The Brexit Secretary will officially open talks with his EU  counterpart Michel Barnier at the EU’s headquarters and promised to approach them ‘constructively’. The talks begin less than a week after Mr Macron used a press conference with Theresa May to make the surprise claim the EU’s door remained open to British membership.   The start of talks is a vital milestone in the two year Article 50 departure process due to expire on March 29, 2019. 

Independent
Chancellor Philip Hammond has said that leaving the EU without any deal on trade would be “a very, very bad outcome” but maintained that there are other outcomes that could be worse. On BBC1’s 
Andrew Marr Show, he said it would be better to leave with no deal than to accept a “deal deliberately structured to suck the lifeblood out of the UK economy over a long period of time”. Negotiations with Brussels begin tomorrow, despite the Prime Minister losing her majority in an election she had said was specifically about acquiring a mandate for her Brexit policy.

Guardian
European leaders fear that Theresa May’s government is too fragile to negotiate viable terms on which to leave the union, meaning the discussions that officially begin on Monday could end in a “brutal Brexit” – under which talks collapse without any deal. As officials began gathering in Brussels on Sunday night, the long-awaited start of negotiations was overshadowed by political chaos back in Westminster, where chancellor Philip Hammond warned that failing to strike a deal would be “a very, very bad outcome”. The EU side fears that, in reality, the British government will struggle to maintain any position without falling apart in the coming months, because, without support from the Democratic Unionist party, May’s negotiating hand is limited. There are also concerns that any DUP backing to give May a majority in the House of Commons would come with strings attached.

Breitbart
Long thought to have been fighting a rearguard action against Brexit within the Tory Cabinet, Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond has conceded Britain will leave the bloc, its Single Market and its Customs Union – with a few caveats. Speaking on the Andrew Marr Show, the Chancellor of the Exchequer was asked: “To those in the Tory Party who call you ‘Remainer Phil’, can you say, ‘We’re definitely leaving the EU, absolutely, on my watch, and we’re definitely leaving the Single Market on my watch?” “Yes,” he replied. “Definitely. We’re leaving the EU, and because we’re leaving the EU we will be leaving the Single Market – and, by the way, we’ll be leaving the Customs Union.

Mosque attack

Sun
ONE person has been killed and ten injured in a suspected terrorist attack after a hired van ploughed into Muslim worshippers leaving a mosque after late-night Ramadan prayers. The attacker – a 48-year-old white man – ran down pedestrians before being pinned down by hero bystanders and arrested by police. Scotland Yard has confirmed one man was pronounced dead at the scene and officers are in the process of informing his next of kin. The attacker struck outside the Muslim Welfare House, close to Finsbury Park mosque, in north London as the area was busy with worshippers who had been attending Ramadan night prayers.

Telegraph
One person has been killed and 10 others injured after a van was rammed into worshippers near a mosque, before the driver is said to have screamed: “I’m going to kill all Muslims”. The van driver – described by witnesses as a large white man – was detained by members of the public after the incident in Finsbury Park early on Monday that police are treating as a terror attack. The white van ploughed into pedestrians as the area was busy with worshippers attending Ramadan night prayers in Seven Sisters Road at 12.20am. Amber Rudd, the Home Secretary, said police are treating it as a “terrorist incident”. Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, described it as “a horrific terrorist attack”.

Times
A man was killed and eight people were injured when a terrorist drove a van into pedestrians near a mosque in north London. A 48-year-old man was arrested after swerving into a group of Muslims who were leaving evening prayers shortly after midnight. The home secretary, Amber Rudd, said police were treating the attack as terrorism. Theresa May is to chair an emergency meeting of Cobra later today. Two witnesses said that the driver got out of the vehicle after hitting about ten people and screamed that he wanted to “kill all Muslims”.

Mail
One person has been killed and ten more injured after a white van driver screaming ‘I’m going to kill all Muslims’ ploughed into worshippers near a renowned north London   mosque, in the latest terror attack to rock Britain. A 48-year-old man has been arrested after the van, which was hired from south Wales,  mounted the pavement and veered into a congregation outside the Muslim Welfare House, near Finsbury Park Mosque, shortly after they finished Ramadan evening prayers, known as taraweeh. Heroic bystanders wrestled the suspect, who was clean-shaven with curly hair and wore a white t-shirt, to the floor and pinned him down until officers arrived, at around 12.20am, after he allegedly screamed: ‘I want to kill all Muslims’, and ‘I did my bit’.

ITV News
Counter-terror police are investigating after a van ploughed into worshippers outside a north London mosque, killing a man and injuring 10 others. The 48-year-old driver, described by eyewitnesses as a large white man, was held down by members of the public before being arrested after the 12.20am attack. Witnesses said he blew kisses to the crowd after being put into a police van outside the Muslim Welfare House in Seven Sisters Road. Prime Minister Theresa May has called an emergency Cobra meeting over what the Metropolitan Police are treating as a terrorist attack. Video posted online appeared to show a man being detained by police on suspicion of attempted murder.

Immigration

Star
BRITAIN is about to become the last chance saloon for every refugee in Europe – and it’s all down to Brexit. If borders checks move back across the channel, we may end up with camps like the Calais Jungle in Kent. So far we’ve been saved from the worst of the Mediterranean migrant crisis by various agreements. But with Brexit straining relations with our neighbours, those deals could soon be history. If that happens, the border moves back to Britain and we have to process all asylum applications here.

Grenfell fire

ITV News
Detectives investigating the Grenfell Tower fire said the official number of presumed dead “will be higher” than the current figure of 58 as they released new images showing the scale of devastation inside the building. Commander Stuart Cundy said the scale of the “indescribable” damage from the fire was such that some of the victims may never be identified in a statement released on Sunday evening. The revised figure will be released on Monday. Mr Cundy said it was already clear that the total number of the dead “will be higher” than the figure previously given by police but said he would not “speculate” on a figure.

Sky News
The cladding used to insulate Grenfell Tower, widely blamed for spreading the devastating blaze, is banned in Britain, Philip Hammond has said. The Chancellor said a criminal investigation would examine whether building regulations had been violated when the block underwent an extensive renovation that was concluded last year. But a firm involved in the renovation of the tower denied that the cladding was banned and said building regulations allowed it for use in low-rise and high-rise developments. Mr Hammond insisted the Government had acted on safety recommendations after an earlier fire in London in 2009, but it would wait for the public inquiry’s findings before making any changes in regulation.

Pay cap

Mirror
Fed-up public service staff could stage a series of strikes over pay, a union boss has warned. Unison general ­secretary Dave Prentis said workers are furious at Theresa May’s stubborn refusal to give them more than a measly 1% pay rise. He said: “We can’t go through another five years of no pay, people are saying enough is enough and public services are suffering. “They have paid the price for austerity. They are willing to take action and are not going to be neutered. “People are sick and tired of policies that favour the very rich when they are finding it difficult to put food on the table.”

Morning Star
UNISON is stepping up campaigning to scrap the public-sector pay cap following the shock election vote, Dave Prentis said yesterday. Speaking ahead of its annual conference tomorrow, the union’s general secretary said Labour’s success had led to a growing belief that years of austerity can be reversed. The government has capped annual public-sector pay rises at 1 per cent until 2020, but Labour’s general election manifesto pledged to end the cap.

Guardian
The NHS pay cap is unfair, unpopular and dangerous to patient safety, bodies representing 1.3 million health service staff have warned  Theresa May, urging her to ditch the policy in the Queen’s speech. The plea from doctors, nurses, dentists and other health professionals comes as the prime minister faces intense pressure to scrap the cap, introduced in 2010, which has limited NHS staff to 1% pay rises or below. It is legislated to continue until 2020. In an unprecedented joint letter, a range of health trade unions told May the policy was among the reasons why the Conservative party lost its Commons majority in the general election earlier this month.

Conservative leadership

Telegraph
David Davis has emerged as the unity candidate to lead the Conservative Party after he was tipped for the post by allies of Boris Johnson.  The Brexit secretary is being touted as a candidate to take Britain past the March 2019 date when Britain is expected to leave the EU if the Prime Minister quits suddenly. Today Mr Davis, Exiting the European Union secretary, heads to Brussels to open formally Britain’s discussions with Brussels bureaucrats about leaving the EU, pledging to secure “a deep and special partnership between the UK and the EU. A deal like no other in history”.

Times
Philip Hammond exacted his revenge on Theresa May yesterday, attacking her campaign “mistakes” as he set out his stall to replace her at No 10. The chancellor, earmarked for the sack during the election, said that the prime minister had blundered by failing to challenge Jeremy Corbyn’s credibility and promote the government’s own economic record. He disappointed businesses that had hoped he would openly call for Britain to stay in the customs union after leaving the EU, although he hinted at a lengthy transition period before a “long-term” replacement was in place.

Mail
Theresa May has just 10 days to save her job as Tory MPs plot to evict her from Downing Street, it was claimed today. Around a dozen MPs are said to be ready to make a written demand for a new leadership contest to replace Mrs May before the summer.  And more will step up if votes on the Queen‘s Speech – due on around June 28 – look like being lost after Mrs May squandered the Tories’ Commons majority in the election. The failure to win the election outright and alarm over her flat footed response to the Grenfell fire has exposed splits within the Cabinet and rage on the Tory benches.   Chancellor Philip Hammond today refused to say how long Mrs May has in her job, insisting the whole Government ‘wants to get on with the job’.

Sun
DAVID Davis has been tipped to become the next Conservative leader, according to allies of Boris Johnson. The Brexit Secretary – who kicks off official Brexit negotiations today – has been dubbed the favourite to take over top job if PM Theresa May decides to quit the role suddenly. However according to The Telegraph suggestions David Davis has become the front runner for the top job could be a tactic to put off rival Boris Johnson. The Foreign Secretary hit back at accusations he was plotting a leadership challenge after being snapped in a private summit with Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon.

French elections

Telegraph
French president Emmanuel Macron clinched an absolute majority in parliament on Sunday night, but record abstention rates and a lower-than-expected landslide prompted critics to warn he has no blank cheque for far-reaching reform. In the latest chapter in his “democratic revolution”, exit polls showed Mr Macron’s centrist party, La République en Marche, (Republic on the Move, or REM) – along with its centrist allies – was on course to win between 355 to 365 out of 577 seats in the lower house together with its centre-right MoDem ally. Polls before the second round of the election predicted the count could be considerably higher. But one survey suggested that 60 per cent of the French did not want the Macron majority to be too overbearing.

Times
Emmanuel Macron consolidated his power last night after French voters handed his army of novices an absolute majority in parliament to drive through the modernising reforms promised in his presidential campaign. The run-off for the National Assembly completed a rout of the old political order, but a record low turnout of about 44 per cent reflected voters’ weariness after months of elections. According to projections based on more than 90 per cent of the votes counted, Mr Macron’s newly formed La République En Marche (REM) was on course to win 359 out of 577 seats with its Mouvement Démocrate centrist allies. REM was projected to take at least 311 on its own, removing the need for an alliance.

Breitbart
Partial official results from France’s second-round parliamentary elections show President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist party with a clear lead over the country’s traditional right-wing and leftist parties. With 57 percent of votes counted, the Interior Ministry said Sunday that Macron’s Republic on the Move! party had won 41 percent of the vote, followed by the conservative Republicans with 23 percent. The ministry said the National Front was in third place with nearly 10 percent followed by the Socialists with 6.2 percent. Pollsters project that Macron’s party and its allies won a clear majority in the National Assembly, the powerful lower house. Many candidates in his party joined only after Macron won the presidency in May.

Mega-tsunami

Star
AN ONSLAUGHT of gigantic tidal waves the height of double-decker buses could one day smash through holiday hotspots in Spain and Portugal before reaching UK shores, scientists have warned. In 1775, a massive tsunami created by the Great Lisbon tremor killed more than 10,000 people in Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Now a major fault line in The Gulf of Cadiz – a magnet for British tourists and expats – is threatening to trigger a massive tremor that could unleash carnage on an even bigger scale. Experts told Daily Star Online the massive shaker could send a barrage of 15-metre high tidal waves hurtling towards Spain, Portugal and Morocco – with coastal areas in the firing line.

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4 Comments on News review – Monday 19 June 2017

  1. First thing I saw on TV this morning was some British Bulls**t Corp reporter informing us that ‘this kind of terror incident was playing into the hands of IS and just what they want’. How the hell does this oaf know what’s going on in the minds of IS murderers? Does he sit down and have cosy chats with them about their bucket lists?
    How come he and his ilk didn’t report in a similar vein after Westminster Bridge, Manchester, London Bridge and Borough Market? “Oh, they shouldn’t carry out these terror attacks because it plays into the hands of everyone who is islamophobic, which is just what they want.”
    Similar mealy-mouthed cretins are describing the Finsbury Park incident as an example of ‘islamophobia’. It’s enough to make a donkey bray.

    Tommy Robinson states unequivocally and truthfully “This is a revenge attack”. He also points out the atrocious record of the Finsbury Park mosque as a venue for hate preaching and Hamza. He is surprised that such an attack did not occur sooner. So am I.

    I hope we are spared the usual shock-horror virtue-signalling from the politicians and media, with calls for one minute’s silence. At this rate, we’re going to be having one minute silences every day of the week. Personally, I reserve my silences for those who died in two world wars sacrificing their lives for the liblabcon incompetents who have subsequently betrayed our country in every imaginable way.

    Several careless and stupid governments are to blame for the mess we are in now, including sharia May’s. If you drive British people to distraction by ignoring the damage you are doing, and allowing the invaders to do to our society, our culture, our identity, our country, our birthright and heritage – don’t blame us for trying to fight back. Accept the situation you have created isn’t working, and reverse it.
    This distressed man’s futile gesture will only result in his imprisonment and possible intimidation or worse from the muslim criminals apparently allowed to run our prisons. Or it will result in a another muslim terror attack, with the Finsbury Park mosque incident as the excuse and so on …. until we have outright mayhem.
    The people who caused this problem had better find a political solution, and it had better not be the further erosion of free speech of the rightful inhabitants of these islands.

    • Panmelia
      What you say is fully justified. When you say a solution had better not be further erosion of free speech….well did you hear sharia May’s speech today? She said that she intends to crack down on all forms of terrorism and I quote ‘including islamophobia’.

      If I hear and read it correctly then my feeling is that peoples’ genuine fears and concerns, dubbed ‘islamophobia’ is now to be classed as a form of terrorism!

      Of course they will further erode free speech. We have very few rights these days and the establishment will not be satisfied until they have fully subdued us.

      I truly fear for our beautiful and once peaceful country.

    • The BBC’s approach to reporting the recent incident was telling. If we needed confirmation that they were working for the enemy that was it.

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