EU leaders want Theresa May to make more concessions before they grant her an audience for a make-or-break trade pitch at a crucial summit next month. Senior EU sources said neither eurocrats nor Member States have yet accepted the PM’s request for Brexit to be added to the agenda in Salzburg. Downing Street insists Austrian leader Sebastian Kurz, who is hosting the summit, has already agreed Brexit will be discussed as a leading item. However, The Sun understands the Chancellor did not make a cast iron promise and that EU Council chief Donald Tusk also remains undecided.
GERMANY has warned a hard Brexit between “stubborn” Britain and the European Union would savage continent’s financial system. The EU member state has urged Prime Minister Theresa May and the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier to do everything in their powers to dodge a hard Brexit due to fears it will cause “bottlenecks” in the financial sector. The result of which would be catastrophic for the EU’s financial markets, though the nation says the prospect is becoming “more likely every day”.
Brexit backers will today deliver straight to the door of Number 10 Downing Street a message from tens of thousands of voters fuming that Theresa May’s latest blueprint is a betrayal of the referendum. The cross-party Get Britain Out grassroots campaign group will deliver a letter endorsed by an estimated 50,000 supporters. It is not known if Mrs May will be at home, and it is not usual for Prime Ministers to accept such petitions in person. But the group sees the event as a chance to underline the anger felt at the “Chequers deal” for continued close links with the European Union, which Mrs May agreed with her Cabinet.
MINISTERS have been blasted for throwing away vital leverage in Brexit negotiations by dishing out massive contracts worth millions of pounds to EU firms. Robin Southwell, former chief executive of Airbus UK, said the Ministry of Defence was signing off eye-watering deals with Brussels while the bloc restricted the UK’s access to developing the Galileo project post-Brexit. Mr Southwell, who is also a business ambassador to Prime Minister Theresa May, urged defence secretary Gavin Williamson to scrap a £3billion deal with Germany for the supply of army vehicles confirmed earlier this year.
Theresa May’s government is throwing away leverage in the Brexit talks by handing big money deals to European Union (EU) firms, a prominent business adviser has said. The blunt criticism comes as an EU chief said the Prime Minister was failing to take a strong stance with the bloc, and was harder to negotiate with than U.S. president Donald J. Trump, describing her as “irrational” and “emotionally inspired” throughout the Brexit negotiations. Robin Southwell OBE, an aerospace businessman and the former head of Airbus UK, said the Ministry of Defence was handing out huge contracts to European firms just as the EU moved to block the United Kingdom from accessing the Galileo satellite project.
The majority of voters – including those who backed Remain – now want ministers to just get on with Brexit, a poll has shown. Some 60 per cent said they no longer care how or when we leave the European Union, but ‘just want it all over and done with’. The survey by Deltapoll found that even 48 per cent of Remainers agreed, compared to 47 per cent who did not. According to the poll of 2,047 adults, 76 per cent of Tory Leave voters and 75 per cent of Labour-leaning Brexit supporters just want to get on with leaving the EU.
A billionaire businessman has called for a no-deal Brexit and “guaranteed” his entire £3.6 billion fortune on getting free trade with Europe. Peter Hargreaves, who donated millions to the Leave campaign, claimed that a no-deal outcome would be the best option for Britain as he launched a scathing attack on Theresa May’s Brexit team. The 71-year-old who founded the financial services company Hargreaves Lansdown in 1981 said: “No deal would give us free trade with Europe because the three biggest economies in Europe, outside Britain, are huge exporters to the UK. That’s Germany, France and Italy.
CITY colossus Peter Hargreaves has said he would bet his vast fortune that a World Trade deal for Britain in the Brexit negotiations will be the best outcome. Mr Hargreaves, who has been honoured with a CBE and is valued at £3.6 billion, has dismissed the scaremongering over failing to get a trade deal with the EU and instead said that opting for world Trade Organisation (WTO) terms will be best for Britain. He told Bloomberg: “I guarantee my entire wealth (£3.6billion) that no deal will get us free trade (with the EU) – because the three biggest economies in Europe are huge exporters to the UK. That’s Germany, France and Italy.”
The co-founder of one of Britain’s largest financial services businesses, Peter Hargreaves, says nobody in the government’s Brexit team ‘has a clue’. He told Bloomberg: “There isn’t one person on our Brexit team that has a clue. None of them are brave. None of them have done a deal. None of them know the art of the deal. “And the amazing thing is they’ve never ever asked any of the people that really are great businessmen. “We should have a team that want Brexit and want us out of the EU.”
Britain would run out of food by this day next year if it can’t easily import food from from the EU and elsewhere after Brexit , Farmers have warned. The National Farmers Union claim a no-deal Brexit would leave the country facing shortages by August 7th, 2019. A long-term decline in self-sufficiency that has stagnated at around 60% in recent years means around three quarters of the shortfall is imported from the rest of the European Union. Farmers have also been “wrangling” with the impact of the summer heatwave, which has pushed concerns around food production into “sharp focus”, the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) warned.
A NO-DEAL Brexit could spark a shortage of sandwiches because fillings would rot at the UK border before they make it to factories, experts have claimed. The sandwich industry fears Britain could leave the EU without a trade deal, creating new customs checks and delays at ports. This could prove disastrous for crucial ingredients including cheese, ham, tomatoes and lettuce which are imported from the EU. Jim Winship, head of the British Sandwich Association, said: “I don’t think consumers understand how complex and global our industry is.
A no-deal Brexit could mean patients in the EU will not be able to receive medicines from the UK, a pharmaceutical giant has said. AstraZeneca warned patients might miss out on drugs if the company does not “prepare well” for the possibility of a no deal. The company, which has its research headquarters in Cambridge, manufactures medicines for treating cancer, heart and lung problems. It was carrying out tests in both the UK and EU as it prepares for “the strongest Brexit scenario,” the company’s director of market access and external affairs, Ad Antonisse, said.
Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca has said patients in the European Union may not be able to receive vital medicines from the UK if the company does not successfully prepare for a no-deal Brexit. The manufacturer of cancer, heart and lung drugs told an official Dutch government website that it was going to have to test medicines in both the UK and the EU to ensure they could cross the border in all Brexit scenarios. But AstraZeneca conceded that it could not guarantee it would succeed, and emphasised that in its case it could be EU citizens who will be at risk.
Remainers have been making plenty of this front page story in the Times this morning which claimed that the police have warned Sajid Javid that a no-deal Brexit would “pose a risk to public safety.” However, any super-sleuth detectives who investigated the story themselves will have pieced together the clues that this was not in fact a letter from the Old Bill themselves but from a small group of Police and Crime Commissioners – politicians, not police. ‘Ello ‘ello… There are 40 PCCs altogether – 20 of whom are Conservative – but the letter itself is from the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners, which in fact counts only 2 Conservative PCCs out of its 7 board members.
EU nations should continue extraditions to the UK until it leaves the bloc next year, despite claims that Brexit could cause uncertainty for suspects, according to a legal opinion written for the European court of justice (ECJ). The opinion by the advocate general at the EU’s highest court was issued after the high court in Ireland referred a case concerning the extradition of a man wanted in relation to alleged rape, arson and murder, on the grounds there was a risk that the man’s rights under present EU law could be compromised post-Brexit.
Britain should offer developers of mini nuclear plants subsidies similar to those made available to the offshore wind industry, an independent review commissioned by the government has recommended. Britain needs to invest in new power-generating capacity to replace ageing coal and nuclear plants that are due to close in the 2020s, and is seeking low-carbon options to help meet its emission reduction targets. The government has been investigating whether mini nuclear plants – so-called small modular reactors (SMR) – could offer a solution.
Boris Johnson has been reported to police over his remarks comparing burqa wearers to ‘bank robbers’, because they will “spread hate crime”. A member of the public, identified by ITV News as Sharmin Akther, reportedly said the former Foreign Secretary’s comments would cause abuse of Muslim women to increase. Speaking in Edinburgh, Theresa May suggested Johnson should apologise for the comments.
Boris Johnson has rejected calls to apologise for his comments about Muslim women wearing burkas as Theresa May said they had “offended people”. The former Foreign Secretary accused his critics of mounting “ridiculous” attacks and attempting to “shut down” legitimate debate. However the Prime Minister said in Scotland that politicians have to be “very careful” about the language they use as she called on him to apologise.
Theresa May has led calls for Boris Johnson to apologise after he compared Muslim women in face-covering veils to bank robbers. Mr Johnson caused anger with an article in which he said that women in burkas looked like letterboxes. Brandon Lewis, the Tory chairman, also told him to say sorry and the former foreign secretary was accused of bigotry by Baroness Warsi, the Muslim Tory peer.
The Tory Islamophobia row has intensified after Theresa May demanded Boris Johnson apologise for comparing women wearing burqas and niqabs to bank robbers and letter boxes. The prime minister said the former foreign secretary’s comments had “clearly caused offence”, as controversy around his words grew on Tuesday. Her intervention followed a wave of anger from senior Conservatives, who slammed Mr Johnson’s remarks as Islamophobic and accused him of partaking in dog-whistle politics to stoke a future populist leadership bid.
Nicola Sturgeon has signalled she is unlikely to be able to make a decision on an independence referendum this autumn because of the uncertainties and confusion around Brexit. The first minister promised earlier this year to update the Scottish parliament this autumn on whether she will press ahead with her demands for a second independence vote once the terms of a Brexit deal were clear. But after meeting Theresa May in Edinburgh on Tuesday, Sturgeon told reporters she was extremely doubtful there would be a clear deal with the EU by October, when May is due to update the Commons on the Brexit talks.
Theresa May faced a barrage of boos as she visited Edinburgh today, as locals shouted “stop Brexit!” A crowd gathered around Edinburgh University’s Informatics Forum building, where the Prime Minister was visiting to launch a new city deal for Edinburgh and the South East of Scotland. But as she emerged from the building she was met with deafening jeers from the crowd. One person was heard shouting: “Any plans for when the government collapses, Theresa?” Others shouted: “Stop Brexit!”
Theresa May has said the Scottish government should get behind her Brexit proposals, following talks with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. The prime minister said Scotland should not try to “sow the politics of division”. Mrs May insisted all parts of the United Kingdom should support the deal, which was agreed by the cabinet. The SNP leader said after talks with Mrs May she still has concerns Britain could be forced to quit the EU without a formal deal. Ms Sturgeon said afterwards: “My concern about the increasing prospect of a no deal Brexit certainly wasn’t allayed in that meeting.
Prime Minister Theresa May has been challenged to set out a “plan B” for Brexit during talks with Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in Edinburgh. Mrs May was in Scotland to mark the signing of a “city deal” investment package for the south east region. Ms Sturgeon said the prime minister’s Brexit plan “seems to be dead”, asking her to set out an alternative to avoid the UK leaving the EU without a deal. Mrs May urged the Scottish government not to “sow division” over Brexit.
The UK Independence Party (UKIP) has urged citizens to defend free speech in the West after big tech firms allegedly coordinated to remove right wing voices, including InfoWars and Tommy Robinson, from social media. On Monday, Apple, Facebook, Pinterest, Spotify, and Google-owned YouTube permanently removed content from InfoWars and its owner Alex Jones, saying he and the website violated their policies against hate speech and harassment. Proponents of the ban say Mr Jones is a conspiracy theorist who deserves to be silenced, while critics have claimed the purge is an attempt to interfere in the U.S. midterm elections and described it as a form of “political censorship”.
Nigel Farage has highlighted the recent censorship of social media voices in America and called for a “campaign for a social media bill of rights in our respective countries”. Writing for Fox News, Farage said: “Are we going to stand idly by as friends, allies, or even political enemies have their speech curtailed or their lives threatened by these modern publishers? Or are we going to demand that they can only have it one way or another?”
Troublesome consultants have a job for life because NHS contracts make it almost impossible to remove them, a former doctors’ watchdog has said. Tim Howard, a past chairman of General Medical Council fitness to practice tribunals, said that managers confronting bad behaviour among senior hospital doctors were hampered by the “Dickensian” nature of their contracts. His comments come after a leaked report described “toxic bickering” at the heart surgery unit of St George’s Hospital in south London that contributed to an increase in patient deaths.
Britain’s new high-speed railway employs a quarter of its staff on six-figure pay packets, The Times can reveal. HS2 paid 318 officials at least £100,000 in salary and perks last year, up from 155 in 2015-16. It also spent more than £600 million on consultants, well over double the figure of a year earlier. The scale of pay has triggered alarm bells at the top of government. Liz Truss, chief secretary to the Treasury, wrote to Chris Grayling, the transport secretary, in the spring warning him that salaries were worryingly high.
HS2 RAILWAY bosses gave a quarter of their staff six-figure pay packets last year, it was reported last night. They also spent more than £600million on consultants in 2017 – more than double the figure a year earlier. The stats emerged amid concern over the spiralling cost of the £55.7billion taxpayer-backed project. HS2 Ltd paid 318 of its 1,346 staff at least £100,000 last year, compared with 155 in 2016, The Times reported. The figure includes salary, bonuses and pension contributions.
The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance has warned Labour is “undermining” the fight against anti-Semitism as it emerged Jeremy Corbyn claimed the BBC was biased for saying Israel has a right to exist. In its first intervention on the anti-Semitism row gripping the Labour party the IHRA said adding or removing sections of the widely accepted definition risks damaging the fight against racism because it creates division.
JEWISH Voice for Labour (JVL) members will deliver a letter of complaint to the BBC today, condemning a “lack of impartiality and inaccuracies” in its reporting of Margaret Hodge’s allegations of anti-semitism against Jeremy Corbyn. JVL representatives are demanding an apology and correction from the corporation. The letter is signed by JVL committee member Pamela Blakelock because a complaint to the BBC can only be signed by one licence fee payer. But it is supported by “hundreds, if not a thousand” JVL members, a spokesman for the group told the Star.
Rumoured passport lanes for British passport holders only post-Brexit would be an incredibly popular policy, backed by a majority of Brits. YouGov polling shows that 51% of Brits would be in favour of the move, with only 19% of people against it. A stark contrast to snobby pundits and commentators who mocked such a move. A whopping 68% of Leave voters are in favour of it, as are 40% of Remain voters. Brexit Britain means independence. The government should ignore the Twitter snobs and get on with delivering this sort of change that the public clearly want to see.
A SPEEDING comet will be visible to stargazers today as it makes its closest ever approach to Earth.The ball of ice, known as the “Incredible Hulk” because of its startling green colour and large size — has entered Earth’s inner solar system for the first time. Comet C/2017 S3 will pass by our planet just 70 million miles away as it hurtles through space towards the Sun. Its distinctive glow is caused by cyanide and carbon molecules in the comet reacting to the warmth of the Sun. First discovered in September 2017, in the past year, the comet has had two surface explosions, one on June 30 this year and a second two weeks later.