The Scottish First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon has claimed that she has a veto on when Britain leaves the European Union. The claim will fuel a growing clash between Prime Minister Theresa May and her cabinet over the timetable for Britain’s exit. Mrs May flew to Edinburgh on Friday to meet with Mrs Sturgeon to discuss Britain’s exit from the EU, telling reporters that she does not want to invoke Article 50, the mechanism for taking Britain out of the EU, until there is an agreed “UK approach” supported by Scotland. Speaking in Edinburgh, Mrs May said: “I have already said that I won’t be triggering Article 50 until I think that we have a UK approach and objectives for negotiations. I think it is important that we establish that before we trigger Article 50.”
BRITAIN’S charge towards the EU exit was proceeding at a cracking pace last night with work on a string of trade deals already under way in Whitehall. Ministers were preparing the ground for rapid negotiations on new agreements with around a dozen countries to meet their timetable for leaving the European bloc in the early months of 2019. Tory Cabinet minister David Davis, the newly-appointed EU Exit Secretary, said: “We’re talking to large numbers of people who all want to help and we’ll get a very, very large trade area, much bigger than the European Union, probably ten times the size.” Countries queuing up to trade with Britain outside the EU were through to include Australia, the US, New Zealand, India, Mexico, South Korea and Iceland.
Owen Smith has hinted Britain could end up staying in the EU if he’s Prime Minister after he pledged a second referendum on the terms of Brexit . The ex-shadow minister said it would be ‘tempting’ not to activate the process to leave, adding: “I don’t think we should accept that we’re on a definite path out”. His comments appear to go further than his previous vow to hold a referendum on the terms of Brexit , rather than the decision to leave the EU itself.
The UK economy will have to weather a short, sharp shock, with Brexit uncertainty holding back both business investment and consumer spending, according to a leading economic forecasting group. As forecasters cut growth expectations, a survey of finance chiefs showed caution increasing since the referendum, and retailers reported fewer shoppers on the high street than a year ago. Severe dents to confidence mean the post-referendum economy is on “a very different path” from three months ago, said the EY Item Club, a forecasting group that uses Treasury modelling. It has slashed its predictions of economic growth for the next few years.
Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron has indicated that the calamitous environment of British politics presents an “historic opportunity” to build a new political party or alliance on the centre-left, involving both the Labour Party and his own MPs. With Labour experiencing a “moment of peril” – as one leadership contender described it last week – and bitter in-fighting leading to growing speculation about a split, the Lib Dem believes there is now a timely chance to create a new opposition to the Conservatives – either through an alliance, a grouping of MPs or the creation of a new party.
Prime Minister Theresa May will warn it would be a “gross irresponsibility” for the UK to surrender its independent nuclear deterrent, when she opens the debate on Trident renewal in the House of Commons on Monday afternoon. In her first statement to the House as Prime Minister, Ms May will say: “We cannot compromise on our national security. We cannot outsource the grave responsibility we shoulder for keeping our people safe.” She will also issue a stark warning to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who has campaigned against nuclear weapons for decades, and has given his MPs a free vote on the issue,
Jeremy Corbyn insisted he would put nuclear disarmament at the heart of his leadership re-election campaign as he promised to vote against the renewal of Trident in a Commons debate that will expose deep divisions within the Labour party. In an interview with the Guardian at the Tolpuddle festival in Dorset, the party leader added that he would like Labour to switch to supporting unilateralism ahead of the motion that will likely cause MPs to split three ways on the future of the deterrent. “I will be voting against continuous at-sea deterrent, because it rules out any compliance with the nuclear non-proliferation treaty,” he said. “I’ve been involved in peace transformation all of my life, and I think we’ve got an opportunity to show leadership in the world.”
Theresa May will appeal to MPs today not to take the “reckless gamble” of voting against Trident’s replacement as she makes her Commons debut as prime minister. Her call for support is aimed at Labour MPs deeply split over the issue of the £31 billion renewal of Britain’s independent nuclear deterrent. Jeremy Corbyn, who will respond to Mrs May at the dispatch box, opposes Labour’s formal policy favouring Trident’s renewal and has been forced to concede a free vote among his MPs. He confirmed yesterday that he would vote against renewal.
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan looks to grant citizenship to some 300,000 Syrians who could travel to Europe when the European Union grants Turkey visa-free access. Turkey has felt the brunt of much of the great migration of the Syrian people as many have gone through the country to Europe over the last year and many have stayed in the country. The Turkish government and president Erdogan are now coming to the realization that the Syrians may never go back to their home country and the Turkish leader is proposing a controversial plan to naturalize over 300,000 Syrians to become Turkish citizens and hold Turkish passports
Europe is braced for a fresh migrant surge following the failed coup in Turkey. The turmoil means the EU’s £5billion deal with Ankara to stop people crossing the Mediterranean is in doubt. Arrivals in Greece have fallen sharply since the decision to return all newcomers to Turkey. But the post-coup crackdown – with the possibility of executions – means migrants could argue it is no longer a safe country to be sent back to. Turkey’s president has vowed his opponents will pay a ‘heavy price for their treason’. Responding to an angry crowd baying for the death penalty yesterday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said: ‘In a democracy, whatever the people want they get.’
Thousands of British families with holidays booked in Turkey are scrambling to cancel following the attempted coup but could find themselves out of pocket. Travel agents say they have been deluged by calls from worried tourists wanting to cancel after seeing shocking footage emerge from the country, where an estimated 50,000 Brits were holidaying last week. Some tour operators were offering the chance to amend or cancel planned trips over the weekend, but others could force holidaymakers to keep their bookings or face losing their cash.
Patients are dying because heart surgeons are too worried about their mortality ratings to operate on critically ill people, a major study has found. One surgeon claimed he had a watched a three-year-old child die waiting for a valve replacement because a doctor was “too chicken” to operate because of the potential risk to his reputation. Another warned that surgeons had “become experts in running away from difficult cases”.