Brexit

A senior Labourite has called for another referendum in the Express.

DAVID Miliband has demanded ANOTHER European Union referendum with the former foreign secretary saying the public need a say on the final deal to “avert the damage of Brexit”.
Putting himself at odds with the Labour Party’s official stance on leaving the EU, he joins former prime ministers John Major and Tony Blair, and the Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable in calls for another vote.
His comments come at difficult time after Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was embroiled in a row over alleged antisemitism within his party.
Mr Miliband wrote in New Statesman: “Brexit is bound to have political consequences – for the international order and for Britain.
“Brexit takes a brick out of the western alliance and the international order at a dangerous time. And for Britain it weakens us when we can least afford it.”
He’s accused both the leadership of the Labour and Tory of “appalling act of short-sightedness” by starting a two-year countdown to Brexit last year.

But Breitbart claims Brexit has had little impact so far.

Shop prices for British consumers have fallen since the Brexit vote, with Barclays boss Jes Staley admitting any impact from leaving the EU will be so small it goes unnoticed.
The American banker told an audience at King’s College London university that there was “reason to believe that for some period of time, the GDP of the UK will probably grow at a slower rate than it might otherwise have grown save for Brexit, but it’s going to be incremental and so it won’t make the headlines” — a far cry from the threats of recession and 500,000 to 800,000 job losses made by the government and the Remain campaign before the EU referendum.
EU loyalists have clung to the fact that Britain’s growth rate has at least slowed as something of a lifeline, although experts such as former IMF Europe Deputy Director Ashoka Mody have said this is merely a result of the fall in sterling letting the air out of a dangerous finance-property bubble and rebalancing the economy towards manufacturing.
Indeed, manufacturing and exporting continue to perform strongly — and
investment spending growth in Britain was, in fact, the highest of any G7 country in 2017.

Another minister is stirring up trouble at the BBC, says Guido.

Don’t say Guido didn’t warn you that Andrew Adonis had been driven mad by Brexit. In the last seven days Adonis has sent 72 tweets claiming the BBC has a pro-Brexit bias. Egged on by less responsible Remainers, he is calling the Beeb the “Brexit Broadcasting Corporation”.
He is tweeting that people need to 
“join the dots”.
And he’s even threatening to set up his own radio station to rival the Today programme.

Ireland

Meanwhile the Irish problem continues to cause trouble, says the Times.

The return of physical checks on the border between the Republic and Northern Ireland  would cause an “eruption of civil disobedience”, it has been claimed.
In an extensive project The Times has talked to communities along the border in Ireland as well as to those living on borders in six other European countries to investigate possible solutions.
Residents in Ireland say that installing physical infrastructure such as cameras would incite violence. The Police Service of Northern Ireland believes that dissident republicans would see the infrastructure as “fair game” and would attack it in the same way as the IRA did customs posts during the Troubles. This view is shared by the Irish government.

And the Guardian is calling for a solution.

The UK’s Brexit negotiators are being urged to come up with a fresh plan to solve the deadlock on the Irish border as a fresh round of talks on the issue continues.
Six weeks of negotiations on Ireland began on Monday last week in Brussels as part of a UK-EU deal to explore workable solutions for the border, days after Theresa May said the transition deal struck last month would inject a “new dynamic” into talks.
However, there is creeping concern that with less than a year to go Britain is no closer to finding a solution, with no ideas considered developed enough to form the framework for a post-Brexit plan.
Sources say the proposals put on the table by the UK last week are not much different to those made last August, which were based on technological solutions and were dismissed by the EU as “magical thinking”.

The Guardian also claims the problems could exacerbate the paramilitary problem there.

David Trimble, whose support was critical in creating the Good Friday agreement, has warned that the Irish government risks provoking loyalist paramilitaries with its stance on the border after Brexit.
In a wide-ranging interview to mark the 20th anniversary of the agreement, Lord Trimble said any special deal to keep the region within Europe would destroy a key tenet of the agreement that there would no constitutional change without majority consent in Northern Ireland.
“What is happening now is that people are talking up the issue of Brexit and the border for the benefit of a different agenda from the agreement,” Trimble said. “The one thing that would provoke loyalist paramilitaries is the present Irish government saying silly things about the border and the constitutional issue. If it looks as though the constitutional arrangements of the agreement, based on the principle of consent, are going to be superseded by so-called ‘special EU status’ then that is going to weaken the union and undermine the very agreement that Dublin says it wants to uphold.”

Gibraltar

Looks like there could be a solution to the Gibraltar problem, says BBC News.

Spain hopes to reach an agreement with the UK over Gibraltar by the summer, its foreign minister has said.
Alfonso Dastis said Spain would “defend our position” but the two sides were “working towards” an agreement as soon as possible.
The UK says “informal” talks are going on about Gibraltar’s post-Brexit future with Spain.
Spain has a long-standing territorial claim on Gibraltar, a UK overseas territory on the Iberian Peninsula.
Mr Dastis has previously said that sovereignty would not be an issue in Brexit negotiations.
Instead Madrid wants joint management of Gibraltar’s airport and more co-operation on tax fraud and border controls.

But the Express says there could still be a problem.

SPAIN’S Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis said Madrid “cannot accept” British jurisdiction over Gibraltar’s airport and will continue to seek joint-management of the airport as Britain’s Brexit talks with the European Union progress.
The Spanish Foreign Minister revealed Madrid will continue to fight the British Government for joint management of Gibraltar’s airport while calling for a bilateral agreement with Brexit  Britain.
Gibraltar’s airport has long been a point of contention between Britain and Spain – with Madrid claiming the strip of land on which it is built was never given to the UK.
Mr Dastis told BBC News: “The problem is that the airport is located in a piece of land that was not ceded under the Treaty of Utrecht so we cannot accept that there is a British jurisdiction over that piece of land.

The Guardian has a story from the Rock.

Not content with a list of daily specials – options on an overcast early spring morning include fried cheese-and-chorizo balls or scotch egg and chips – the cafe down the road from the headquarters of the Gibraltar government also dispenses advice.
“Keep calm and eat British fish and chips,” reads one sign by the door. “Keep calm and drink 
tinto de verano,” counsels another.
Comfort food and wine spritzers were very much in order when the sun rose over the Rock on 24 June 2016. The joy and relief that greeted the news that 96% of Gibraltar’s voters had cast their ballots in favour of sticking with the EU quickly curdled as referendum night wore on.

Police

The Telegraph has an exclusive story that police aren’t investigating crimes properly.

Police are failing to properly investigate two thirds of burglaries as forces struggle to cope with the rising tide of crime on Britain’s streets.
In the last two years the number of unsolved domestic burglaries has risen from 47 per cent to 64 per cent – while in some areas nine out of ten cases are written off without any action.
After years of decline, burglary has suddenly seen a sharp upturn with more than 400,000 crimes recorded last year – around half of which took place at people’s homes.
But despite the surge in offences, many forces have stopped routinely attending burglaries in person, opting instead to deal with victims on the phone.

The Mail claims even murders are being neglected.

Scotland Yard admitted yesterday it had run out of detectives to investigate murders as six teenagers were knifed in just 90 minutes on another blood-soaked night in the capital.
The force was forced to call in neighbouring City of London Police to carry out an inquiry into a killing in East London this week.
It took the highly unusual action as the capital’s soaring murder toll hit 55.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick admitted it was a ‘very worrying’ time as she was forced to deny her officers had ‘lost control of crime’.
She said: ‘Over the last three months and in particular in the last several days, we have had an unusual spike in horrible homicides, ghastly events, that have taken people’s lives and devastated other people’s lives.

NHS

Our National Health Service is still under great strain, says the Mail.

A cancer patient recovering from a life-saving operation was forced to sleep in a hospital cupboard due to a bed shortage.
Shocking images show Martyn Wells, 49, from Worcester, lying in the cramped, windowless room after being wheeled into the makeshift ward days after having his stomach removed.
The father-of-four, who had stage four malignant melanoma, went under the knife at Birmingham‘s Queen Elizabeth Hospital last Wednesday and claims he was wheeled into the cupboard while he slept.
When he complained to a nurse the next morning, Mr Wells was told the room was classed as a ‘clinical decisioning space’.
Mr Wells, who had a ’15-inch incision’ in his abdomen, tweeted Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt a picture of the ‘broom cupboard’ to highlight the state of the NHS but is yet to receive a response.

Burglar killing

The story of the pensioner who killed a burglar is reported in the Telegraph.

The pensioner arrested for the murder of a burglar has been told be police he will not be charged with any offence.
Richard Osborn-Brooks, 78, faces no further action over the stabbing of Henry Vincent, a career criminal, who had broken into his home in Hither Green in south east London on Wednesday at the scene.
Scotland Yard said in a statement that officers had spoken to Vincent’s family and explained the reasons for the decision. It had been taken after consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).
Mr Osborn-Brooks, whose wife is suffering from dementia, had been arrested after Vincent’s death and initially told to return to a police station in May.

And the Times.

A pensioner who stabbed to death an intruder will not face any criminal charges, police ruled last night after ministers said that burglary victims had the right to defend themselves.
Richard Osborn-Brooks, 78, was arrested on suspicion of murder after Henry Vincent, 37, an armed career criminal who previously targeted the elderly, was stabbed during a struggle in the early hours of Wednesday.
The decision not to charge Mr Osborn-Brooks with any offence followed pressure from MPs and campaigners who argued that homeowners had the right to use force against violent intruders. David Gauke, the justice secretary, said that the government’s sympathies were with the victims of break-ins.

The Sun says it’s a victory for common sense.

THE pensioner who stabbed a burglar to death has been told he will not be charged — in a victory for common sense.
Richard Osborn-Brooks, 78, was cleared over the death of Henry Vincent in South East London after 18,000 Sun readers signed a petition.
Vincent, 38, died after suffering a stab wound during the botched burglary on 78-year-old Richard Osborn-Brooks’ home in South East London.
Police today confirmed the OAP would face no further action after he was arrested on suspicion of murder on Wednesday.
The decision to arrest him sparked outrage after The Sun revealed Vincent is a career criminal who targets elderly people – carrying out a spate of break-ins on the homes of vulnerable victims.

Labour Party

There’s plotting afoot in the Labour Party, says the Express.

JEREMY Corbyn is plotting to ease the process of ousting local MPs who oppose his leadership and restrain the powers of unions, one of his closest allies has revealed.
The shocking plan was laid bare by Momentum founder Jon Lansman during a meeting in London on March 26, when he explained how the Labour leader wants to beef up the trigger ballot system.
In a secret recording obtained by the Mirror, Mr Lansman is heard saying: “It is Jeremy’s intention, when we finish the selections in the marginal seats, to move on to trigger ballots.
“There are also some rule changes on the agenda which would improve the trigger ballot process which increases the majority…the proportion of the selectorate which an MP needs to have to avoid a deselection process.”

The Mail also has the story.

Jeremy Corbyn plans to make it easier for moderate MPs who oppose his leadership to be deselected, one of his close allies has claimed in a secret recording.
Momentum founder Jon Lansman said the  Labour leader wants to overhaul party rules to lower the threshold for deselection.
Mr Lansman – who helped run Mr Corbyn’s leadership campaign – made the claims to a meeting in London which was covertly recorded at a meting in London on March 26.
It comes as many moderate MPs have been bombarded with abuse and threats of deselection from Corbynista supporters.
Mr Lansman told the meeting: ‘It is Jeremy’s intention, when we finish the selections in the marginal seats, to move on to trigger ballots. 

In an exclusive, the Guardian has details of leaked meeting minutes.

The depth of the split in the Labour party’s ruling body over antisemitism and racism has been laid bare in leaked minutes that show fierce disagreements over disciplinary action.
Key supporters of Jeremy Corbyn attempted to block action against Labour members facing complaints, according to the minutes obtained by the Guardian.
Momentum’s founder, Jon Lansman, and the MP Jon Trickett were two prominent figures who voted to limit disciplinary action in the three contentious cases that went to a vote, multiple sources said. Lansman has been outspoken in recent days on the need for Labour to take antisemitism cases in the party seriously.

And the Mirror claims Corbyn will force his opponents out.

Jeremy Corbyn plans to make it easier for his supporters to force out MPs seen as opponents of his leadership, one of his closest allies has revealed.
The Labour leader also supports moves which would have the effect of further sidelining unions, according to Jon Lansman, who launched the grassroots Momentum campaign which has been key to keeping Mr Corbyn in power.
In a secret recording obtained by the Mirror, Mr Lansman laid bare the plot to beef-up the system of trigger ballots.
The system means a local party decides whether to automatically back a sitting MP for the next election or carry out a new selection procedure – which can lead to the MP being ousted by members before facing ordinary voters.

The party’s Jewish problem continues in the Times.

Thousands of Jews may leave Britain if Jeremy Corbyn becomes prime minister without eradicating antisemitism from Labour, Europe’s most senior rabbi has said, comparing it to fears of a Marine Le Pen presidency in France.
Chief Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, also criticised Mr Corbyn for attending a passover dinner hosted by the far-left Jewdas group, saying that he was in effect telling mainstream Jewish bodies to “go fly a kite”.
His comments come as polling shows that Mr Corbyn’s personal ratings have dropped sharply. A YouGov poll of 1,662 people for The Times reveals that the proportion of those who say he is doing “badly” has jumped by 19 points since December 19-20 to 56 per cent.

Russia

Several of the papers report the improvement in the condition of Sergei Skripal. The Times says:

The former Russian double agent attacked with nerve agent is no longer in a critical condition, doctors say.
Sergei Skripal, 66, has followed his daughter Yulia, 33, in making a recovery after they were  poisoned with novichok in Salisbury more than a month ago. It came as government sources accused Russia of using Ms Skripal’s cousin, Viktoria, as a “pawn” after she recorded a telephone conversation with Yulia which was then played on state television. In the recording, which is understood to be authentic, Yulia said: “Nobody has anything irreparable.”

The Mail also reports his condition.

Russian spy Sergei Skripal’s condition is ‘improving rapidly’ following his daughter’s awakening more than a week ago.
It comes after a High Court judge warned he might never ‘regain capacity’ and that his condition could ‘deteriorate rapidly.
His daughter, Yulia, 33, is alleged to have made a phone call to her cousin in Moscow — who has since been denied entry to Britain.
Viktoria Skripal’s visitor visa was refused ‘on the grounds that her application did not comply with immigration rules’, according to the Home Office.  

The Times claims sanctions are hitting Russians hard.

A new wave of US sanctions has wiped more than £1 billion off the value of the London-listed company of the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska.
Shares in En+, which floated on the London Stock Exchange five months ago and reported revenues of $12 billion last year from power plants and metals interests in Russia, slumped 20 per cent as the US named the business magnate among seven oligarchs sanctioned.
Announcing some of the toughest penalties yet imposed on Russia during the Trump presidency, the White House denounced Moscow for a catalogue of “malign activities”. It comes amid already plummeting relations between the Kremlin and Washington.

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