UKIP have warned that a massive Tory majority could see Britain’s fisheries handed over to Brussels as a bargaining chip in the Brexit talks. The party has said that taking back control of the seas around UK should be “a red line” in the negotiations with Brussels and foreign vessels must be “stopped from plundering” fish stocks. It comes as senior sources say that they are “hoping for 400 candidates” in the general election on 8 June. The party has decided to focus on seats which had a strong Leave vote but not run against Tory and Labour MPs who backed Brexit. Leader Paul Nuttall will run in Boston and Skegness, deputy leader Peter Whittle in South Basildon and East Thurrock, and London Assembly member David Kurten in Castle Point in Essex. In an attempt to put clear blue water between themselves and the Tories, Mr Nuttall and fisheries spokesman Mike Hookem launched a new policy on fisheries demanding that EU boats are only allowed into British waters under licence.
SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has been accused of treating fishermen with ‘utter contempt’ after the EU confirmed an independent Scotland would have to surrender its grounds to Brussels as the price of readmission. Karmenu Vella, the unelected European Commissioner responsible for fisheries, confirmed that there was no way a new member-state could avoid adopting the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), in which fisheries are treated as a “common resource” and shared out by Brussels. Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party leader Ruth Davidson declared the Sturgeon’s policy was a “return to the despised Common Fisheries Policy – but she wants to pretend otherwise”. She alleged the SNP were trying to “have it both ways,” on the issue, adding, “Scotland’s fishing communities will not be fooled by them.”
MEPs will veto any Brexit deal that fails to uphold the rights of EU citizens, the European parliament’s Brexit coordinator has said, in a warning shot to Theresa May’s government. Guy Verhofstadt said the parliament would block any Brexit deal that failed to offer adequate protections for 3.5 million EU nationals in the UK and 1.2 million Britons in Europe. Citizens’ rights would be a crucial factor in determining whether parliament gave its consent, he said. “We will never give consent if the issues of citizens’ rights, on both sides, has not been dealt with in a satisfactory way.” Verhofstadt was speaking at a special session in the parliament on Thursday to examine the legal and political minefield facing 4.7 million people on the wrong side of the Brexit divide.
MICHEL Barnier this afternoon laid out his ambitious hopes for the closest possible future relations between Britain and the European Union in a landmark speech to the Irish parliament. In an open and conciliatory address the chief Brexit negotiator scorned “aggressive” eurocrats and pleaded with both Brussels and Westminster to remove poison from the negotiations. The Frenchman, who is in charge of the divorce talks, said he “regrets” the decision of the British people last June but insisted it should not lead to a severing of EU-UK ties. And in his most detailed speech to date he laid out how he wants to secure continued cross-Channel cooperation on a huge range of issues, from trade and security to research and foreign policy. The chief Brexit negotiator was invited to speak before Ireland’s houses of parliament – the first time an unelected official has been asked to do so – due to the country’s unique vulnerability in the event of talks turning sour.
Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, is trying to get David Davis the sack by allowing negative briefings about him, the Brexit secretary has claimed. Mr Davis also signalled that he hoped to be able to get an agreement on the status after Brexit of European Union nationals, and Britons living on mainland Europe, as early as September if the Conservatives win the election. Speaking to The Telegraph on a visit to Thurrock, Essex, Mr Davis pointed to a highly critical briefing to a German newspaper after a dinner in 10 Downing St with Mrs May and Mr Juncker two weeks ago. It claimed Mrs May was “not amused” by Mr Davis highlighting a legal challenge against the Government when he was a backbench MP over the UK’s surveillance powers in the European courts.
JEAN-Claude Juncker is trying to get the Brexit Secretary sacked from the Government, David Davis himself has claimed. Mr Davis claimed the president of the European Commission has portrayed him negatively in the press, which in turn has produced an array of stories “briefed against him”. The Brexit Secretary also accused EU officials of trying to create “difficulties” for Theresa May’s party because they recognise a Tory election victory would benefit Britain’s Brexit “negotiating hand”. The Tory MP for Haltemprice and Howden told the Telegraph: “All these stories are briefing against me trying to get me sacked – which of course is a compliment by the way. “If they don’t want me across the table, there is a reason for that – it is in Britain’s interests, not theirs.” Mr Davis pointed to a highly critical interview featured in a German newspaper two weeks ago, after Mrs May had dinner with Mr Juncker.
THE EU’s chief Brexit negotiator has made a thinly-veiled attack on Jean-Claude Juncker for leaking details of his Downing Street dinner by calling for “mutual respect” in upcoming talks. Michel Barnier was giving a speech in Ireland today where he claimed there is no reason why Brussels can’t have a “strong relationship” with the UK after we leave the bloc. But he delivered a rebuke to the European Commission president Mr Juncker after damaging details from a summit with Theresa May at No10 were printed in a German newspaper. The hated Eurocrat was alleged to have remarked: “I leave Downing Street ten times as sceptical as I was before.” But Mr Barnier said: “If we put things in the right order, if we negotiate with mutual respect, without any kind of aggressivity. if we are open to finding solutions, there is no reason why a strong Europe cannot maintain a strong relationship with the UK.”
GUY Verhofstadt this afternoon described the British as “victims” of Brexit as he called for an extraordinary and wide-ranging deal on citizens’ rights which would allow people from the UK to continue living and working on the continent indefinitely. The EU parliament’s Brexit negotiator laid out his highly ambitious plan for a programme of special “privileges” which would continue to be available to Britons long after the country leaves the bloc in Spring 2019. They would include the right for British people to continue to travel and work in the rest of the EU even after Brexit and continued participate in the bloc’s democratic processes including voting in its parliamentary elections.
AMERICA has threatened a financial trade war with the EU over its plans to cripple Brexit Britain by forcing lucrative key City business to the continent. In remarks that will delight No10, a US lawmaker said moves by Brussels to insist euro clearing takes place within the bloc would “undoubtedly inform the evolution of US regulatory policy”. The EU revealed earlier this month it was considering a location policy for the $1 trillion market in light of Britain’s departure in a move that could hit firms in London. Christopher Giancarlo, acting chair of the US Commodity and Futures Trading Commission, said the EU should proceed with “care”. And he said: “To date, the US has not deemed a body of water – even as large as the Atlantic Ocean – as an impediment to effective clearing house supervision and examination.”
The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator has reassured Ireland that he will work to avoid a hard border in the wake of Britain’s exit. Addressing both houses of the Irish parliament, Michel Barnier said: “I am fully aware that some member states will be more affected than others. “I want to reassure the Irish people: in this negotiation Ireland’s interest will be the Union’s interest … Brexit changes the external borders of the EU. “I will work with you to avoid a hard border.” In addressing both houses of parliament, Mr Barnier was given a privilege normally only afforded to visiting heads of state and prime ministers, joining luminaries like Nelson Mandela and Bill Clinton. Mr Barnier said there was no reason why the EU cannot have a “strong relationship” with the UK after it leaves, but Brexit will inevitably have consequences.
The United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union will be so damaging that it will try to rejoin in 20 years, Scotland’s Brexit minister said on Thursday. Michael Russell told a Scottish parliamentary committee there was a high chance that Brexit talks would fail soon and that the bill for Brexit was the biggest stumbling block. Britain is about to enter negotiations with the EU over the terms of its exit, due in March 2019, though relations with Brussels have been overshadowed in recent weeks by a public display of brinkmanship. “I actually think in 20 years time, if the UK does come out, in 20 years time the UK will be in the process of trying to be back in and it will have lost 20 years of influence and progress,” said Michael Russell, whose formal title is Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland’s Place in Europe. “It is that foolish.”
What does the European Union need? An orderly dismantling? No, another expensive Parliament. Of course! Germany’s Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has today renewed the push for Eurozone integration (yes even more) by calling for a Parliament for those unlucky enough to find themselves with the disastrous Euro as their currency. “We could strengthen the mechanisms. We could create a Eurozone Parliament made up of members of the European Parliament, which could have consultative powers over the European Stability Mechanism,” he told Italy’s La Repubblica. Schaeuble has apparently already discussed the idea with France’s President-elect Emmanuel Macron who stood on a ticket of shoring up the EU at any cost. No matter how much the European Union fails, the answer in Brussels is always the same: more cost, more waste, more lunacy.
The European Union approved visa-free travel for Ukrainians on Thursday, fulfilling a key promise to cement ties with Kiev as it remains embroiled in a deadly conflict with pro-Russian insurgents. “YES, we did it!” Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko wrote on Facebook after the Brussels decision, which the former Soviet republic has been trying to clinch for years. “It feels like coming home after a long and exhausting journey,” the pro-Western leader said, adding that Ukraine was gradually “becoming part of a common European civilisation”. The European Union and Ukraine sealed a broad trade and political association agreement after the overthrow of Kiev’s Russian-backed government in 2014, with Brussels aiming to bring the Soviet-era satellite into the European fold.
Theresa May talks a lot about using this election to strengthen her negotiating hand in Brussels, what she does not talk about much is how she needs to bolster her powerbase in Westminster too. But her predecessor David Cameron was happy to talk about exactly that on Thursday, saying he wanted Theresa May to “win well” so that she can “stand up to people that want an extreme Brexit, either here or in Brussels”. Mr Cameron knows only too well the problems of a restive backbench. He presided over the most rebellious parliament of the post-war era, his eurosceptic MPs keeping up the pressure on their leader, edging him – with the help of the UKIP threat – towards calling an EU referendum. One consequence of this election could be to give Mrs May more manoeuvrability over Brexit by diluting the influence of the 50 or so hard-line eurosceptics on her party’s backbenches.
Jeremy Corbyn has an “unprecedented” £30billion black hole in his spending plans, it has emerged as leading economists warned that he will bring a level of state intervention not seen since the Second World War. Labour’s draft manifesto, which was leaked to The Telegraph, includes up to £90billion worth of spending commitments which will cost every household in Britain the equivalent of £4,000 each. However economists suggested that Labour’s plans for borrowing and tax rises will only raise £60billion, leaving a huge gap in spending plans. Economists said there would be a “huge” rise in tax and borrowing to fund the spending, which includes renationalising industries, investing £35billion in infrastructure and a significant rise in funding for schools and the NHS.
Labour candidates were in revolt last night as Jeremy Corbyn and his allies forced through a manifesto for what could amount to the biggest state intervention in more than four decades. The leader emerged from a meeting of senior party figures to claim unanimous support for a slate of policies estimated to cost about £90 billion a year, insisting that they were “very popular”. Candidates quickly disavowed the document, however, insisting that voters would pay little attention to the promises of a party 20 points behind in the opinion polls. Mr Corbyn faced recriminations over the leaking of the draft manifesto on a day when a car carrying the Labour leader ran over the foot of a BBC cameraman, who was taken to hospital.
Labour is plotting a £93 billion-a-year spending spree that would cost families an average of £4,000 each, it emerged last night. Analysis of the party’s leaked draft manifesto, which was signed off by Labour’s high command yesterday, reveals an array of costly pledges – but little information about how they will be funded. On a calamitous day for party leader Jeremy Corbyn – including his car running over a BBC cameraman’s foot – one expert described the manifesto as ‘the most expensive suicide note in history’. And the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies warned the scale of state intervention would be the biggest seen since the 1940s, when Britain was rebuilding after the war.
Voters overwhelmingly back policies set out in Labour’s leaked manifesto, including nationalising the railways, building more houses and raising taxes on higher earners, according to a poll. The ComRes survey shows around half of people support state ownership of the train network (52 per cent), energy market (49 per cent) and Royal Mail (50 per cent). Roughly a quarter of people (22, 24 and 25 per cent respectively) said they opposed the policies, outlined in the party’s draft document, which was signed off by Labour executives at a meeting on Thursday. All 43 pages of Jeremy Corbyn’s plan for a Labour government were leaked on Wednesday, days before the official manifesto launch.
Labour’s manifesto has been given the thumbs up by voters, a Mirror poll reveals today. The ComRes survey shows overwhelming support for plans to re-nationalise energy, tax the wealthiest and cap the pension age rise. But the poll also finds a clear majority do not rate Jeremy Corbyn as a candidate to be Prime Minister. A draft version of Labour’s policy agenda leaked to the Mirror sets out bold plans to bring back energy, the railways and Royal Mail under control. Our snap opinion poll found almost every Labour policy announcement went down well with voters.
One in eight family doctor posts is now vacant after a sixfold rise in recent years, a survey has suggested. Many surgeries have given up on finding enough staff as GP shortages force patients to wait longer for an appointment. Some have had to close or turn to pharmacists to plug gaps as ministers struggle to fulfil pledges to train thousands more family doctors. GPs are carrying out tens of millions more appointments each year as older, sicker patients demand to see a doctor more often. Simon Stevens, the head of NHS England, has acknowledged that “GPs’ backs are against the wall” and promised urgent reinforcements as part of a £2.4 billion rescue package.
Some medical practices are being forced to close after failing to recruit GPs as the number of vacancies soar to 12.2%, research suggests. The survey was carried out amongst 860 GPs and found that the average time taken to recruit a GP partner has risen from 6.6 months to 7.4 in the last year. The research, carried out by the GP news magazine Pulse, found that 18% of GPs said they had to give up recruiting in the past 12 months after being unsuccessful. While some practices are having to resort to hiring non-GPs to fill the gaps, others have closed down after failing to recruit a GP partner. Despite a Government target to recruit 5,000 GP’s by 2020 a report from the Commons Public Accounts Committee in April found there had been “no progress” in increasing the number. MPs said more trainees needed to be recruited, while existing GPs should be encouraged to stay on.
One in eight GP posts is empty with soaring numbers of doctors retiring or moving abroad. The vacancy rate has increased six-fold in six years and implies the NHS is short of almost 5,000 family doctors. Some surgeries have given up trying to recruit more, and are hiring pharmacists or therapists to take appointments instead. Others have had to permanently close, forcing their patients to register with a practice further away, which in turn becomes overcrowded. A survey of 860 GPs by Pulse magazine found the average vacancy rate at their surgeries was 12.2 per cent. This has risen from 11.7 per cent reported last year and compares with just 2.1 per cent in 2011. These staffing gaps pile the pressure on remaining family doctors and increase waiting times for patients.
They give their all under the most trying of circumstances, but nurses are struggling to deliver the care they pride themselves on thanks to savage Tory cuts. And now many have joined forces to demand Theresa May scraps the 1% cap on wage rises in a bid to stop an exodus of staff and boost recruitment. In a protest letter to the PM, the NHS workers tell how some are so hard up they have turned to second jobs to make ends meet or even foodbanks and hardship grants. And they warn Mrs May will destroy nursing as her war on the health service is putting off the next generation of nurses from joining. Timed to mark Nurses’ Day today, which celebrates the birth of Florence Nightingale in 1820, the letter tells the Prime Minister: “You must scrap the pay cap and fill the tens of thousands of vacant nursing jobs. Every day of the year, and all hours of the day and night, nurses are working hard in hospitals and in communities.
FIREFIGHTERS threatened to extinguish their response to medical emergencies yesterday if their wages are not increased beyond the Tories’ derisory pay cap. Fire Brigades Union (FBU) general secretary Matt Wrack told conference that all public services are suffering from the government’s stubborn 1 per cent cap on pay. He pointed to TUC analysis that shows public-sector workers have taken a £2,000 a year dent in their wages since 2010. But an FBU-commissioned study by Incomes Data Research, which looked specifically at firefighters’ pay, showed they have lost as much as £5,000. Mr Wrack said these findings, alongside the extra work firefighters are carrying out by responding to medical emergencies, “lay the basis for a strong evidence-based case for improved pay.” He said: “We think we can make the strongest pay claim in years.”
FOX hunting with dogs was outlawed by Tony Blair’s Labour government in 2004. But the issue is back in the headlines again after Prime Minister Theresa May said she will allow a free vote on the ban. Fox hunting with dogs was banned in 2004 amid complaints by animal welfare campaigners who argued it caused suffering to wild animals chased and killed by hounds. However, the ban did not end traditional hunts, in which mounted riders and a pack of hounds race across the countryside. Many hunts now follow a scent trail instead of a fox, or work around loopholes in the law. The law, introduced by Labour in 2004, bans the use of dogs to hunt foxes and other wild mammals in England and Wales.
Front National legislative candidate Aymeric Durox has exclusively revealed to Breitbart London the new name of the Front National could be “Les Patriotes”, or the Patriots. Mr. Durox said the name change, which was talked about on Sunday evening following the defeat of anti-mass migration candidate Marine Le Pen, is likely to be Les Patriotes citing the office of vice president of the party Florian Philippot registering the name in 2015. “I know that the director of the cabinet of Florian Philippot filed the name ‘Les Patriotes’ in April 2015, perhaps already with the prospect of a name change, but nothing is sure,” he told Breitbart London. He said the legacy of the name Front National still “scared off” some voters and a name change and rebranding could bring more people into the movement.