THERESA May is planning to walk out of Brexit talks with Brussels in September unless EU bosses drop their demands for a massive exit fee. A Downing Street source suggests that, despite not winning a majority in the general election, Mrs May is not shying away from getting tough with the European Commission. Michel Barnier, the Commission’s chief negotiator, has set out demands for up to £88bn (€100m) from Britain as an exit fee, as the European Union struggles to fill the black hole left in its finances by losing the UK’s net contribution of £11bn a year. But, according to reports, a senior figure at No 10 briefed business and industry leaders that the UK is preparing to quit talks in September.
Briefings have been thrown out by the government that Theresa May and Co. could walk away from the Brussels negotiating table if the EU puts forward a huge Brexit bill, according to The Sunday Telegraph. It comes after whispers that the likes of Jean-Claude Juncker could demand between £60 – £90 billion in what would amount to a punishment deal aimed at making an example of the UK for daring to have the temerity to opt back to national self-governance. More than a year on from the Brexit referendum, negotiations are finally under way, and it remains unclear whether some of the EU’s hard-nosed, outrageous stances on a deal are bluster or points of principle they will be sticking to. What is clear is that after paying into the EU pot for donkey’s years, there is little appetite for a blackmail-ridden jackpot-sized prize to be handed over.
British business leaders have been told to brace for the possibility that Prime Minister Theresa May’s government may walk out of Brexit talks this year, according to the Sunday Telegraph. The move would be designed for “domestic consumption” to show the government is negotiating hard with the European Union, the newspaper reported. The newspaper did not reveal how it obtained the information. The Sunday Telegraph said the briefing of business leaders by a senior May aide took place after last month’s general election and the person has since left in the recent overhaul at the top of government. May’s office did not immediately to a request for comment.
British officials have accepted there will have to be a trade-off between access to the single market and political control during the Brexit negotiations, it has been reported. The government had previously promised a deal where Britain could have both but it appears this idea is now being softened as the fallout after the general election continues. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson had previously claimed Britain could “have its cake and eat it” suggesting there would no need to make any concession over immigration or court jurisdiction to get full trade access. Civil servants are now reportedly saying this is not possible and are providing ministers with a choice between accepting political compromises on issues such as freedom of movement or settling for a trade deal which is considerably more limited.
ITALY’S EU Minister Sandro Gozi has confirmed that the major countries in the bloc are preparing for a shock reversal decision on Brexit. Italy’s Minister for the EU has confirmed that talks are ongoing between EU countries to prepare for a shock political scenario – a Brexit reversal from Britain. Sandro Gozi said the British people will soon discover that it doesn’t matter if the country gets a hard or soft Brexit, because any Brexit deal will leave the country “very weak”. Speaking to Matt Frei on LBC, Mr Gozi said that Rome is “not ruling out” Britain changing its mind on the EU referendum later this year. This comes amid reports yesterday that ambassadors from larger EU states have been working to prepare the ground if the UK should have a change of heart about leaving the bloc.
Signing Britain up to a customs union with the European Union need not prevent it from striking important trade deals elsewhere, according to influential new thinking in Whitehall. Officials and business leaders are anxious to puncture what they see as myths about a customs union that have deterred ministers from considering it as a much-needed economic option after Brexit. While leaving the existing EU customs union is a direct consequence of Brexit, civil servants believe that agreeing a new customs union with the EU is not only possible but still compatible with key aims of Liam Fox’s Department for International Trade.
Italy will threaten to confiscate charity-run migrant rescue ships as she considers closing her seaports entirely to the mass influx of asylum seekers arriving via the Mediterranean route from Africa. The southern European nation is set to make the threat at an emergency European Union summit on Sunday after the country was overwhelmed last week by the arrival of 13,500 Africans in just two days, picked up off the coast of Libya, leaving asylum seeker welcome centres in a state of “collapse”. The proposed move comes less than a week after the country threatened to close seaports to rescue boats operated by Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).
LIBYAN coastguards who have been given millions of pounds from the European Union have been astonishingly accused of involvement in the selling of vulnerable refugees to vile people smugglers. The security situation in the hostile African nation is spiralling out of control with desperate migrants caught up in the chaos. Militia groups are attacking each other, as well as the so-called ”unity” government – the Presidency Council, headed by unity Prime Minister Fayez Sarraj. The internationally recognised government cannot control of large swathes of the nation where lawless militants run riot, selling men and raping women on a daily basis.
The European Union’s chief negotiator in the Brexit talks is insisting the European Court of Justice (ECJ) should not only continue to have jurisdiction over EU migrants in Brexit Britain but that it should also retain its current powers to fine the British government. Frenchman Michel Barnier believes the ECJ should be able to demand “a lump sum or a penalty payment” from Britain if it should break a yet-to-be-confirmed deal on EU nationals’ rights after Brexit. “The withdrawal agreement should provide for an effective mechanism to ensure compliance by the parties with judgments of the Court of Justice handed down in accordance with the withdrawal agreement,” reads a position paper seen by The Guardian newspaper.
A cabinet split emerged last night after Michael Gove claimed taxes should not have to rise to pay for an end to austerity despite the Chancellor’s warning that ordinary working people will foot bill. Faced with increasing calls to end the public sector pay cap and put more money into schools and hospitals Philip Hammond has cautioned that money will have to be raised to pay for the extra spending. But his remarks prompted Mr Gove to claim tax hikes are not necessary, putting the two senior cabinet colleagues in direct opposition. The row over whether austerity will be softened in the coming months and how it can be achieved were exposed following a number of hints by the Chancellor over recent weeks that tax rises cannot be ruled out.
The Government should take on board recommendations of independent review bodies regarding the public sector pay cap, Michael Gove has said. The Environment Secretary broke ranks as he piled pressure on Theresa May and Philip Hammond, both of whom have received increasing criticism after the Conservative Party and the Democratic Unionist Party came together to vote down Labour’s amendment to the Queen’s speech calling for the end of the public sector pay cap. Pay rises have been capped at one per cent since 2013 with a two-year freeze before that. Now Mr Gove has called on the Government to respect the “integrity” of the pay review process and take on any advice which is given.
Labour was in chaos on Sunday after the party’s chairman warned moderate MPs could be purged and that none “have a divine right” to serve under Jeremy Corbyn. Ian Lavery, who was in charge of Labour’s election campaign, hinted that MPs could be de-selected if they do not agree with Mr Corbyn’s plans as it emerged the move could accelerate plans for a new party. Rumours that senior Labour MPs are working behind the scenes to build a new movement which would be seen as a more centrist version of Labour were circulating amid the chaos.
Labour might have won last month’s general election had it chosen Owen Smith as leader, Owen Smith has said. The shadow Northern Ireland secretary, who lost to Jeremy Corbyn in a leadership contest last year, said it was impossible to know what would have happened but appeared confident in his own abilities. Asked on Sky News’s Sophy Ridge programme whether the party would have done as well under his leadership, Mr Smith said: “I don’t know. I hope so. I hope I might have even got us to win – but I can’t know that, Sophy.” The newly-returned shadow cabinet minister however said that his party leader’s position was not under threat and that he had been “clearly wrong” about Mr Corbyn’s abilities as a leader.
A key ally of Jeremy Corbyn has raised the prospect that local Labour members could deselect their MPs. Ian Lavery – who Mr Corbyn installed as party chairman last month – warned Labour “might be too broad a church” as a poll showed his party six points ahead of the Tories. Talk of deselections last year prompted fear among anti-Corbyn MPs as the Labour party more than doubled in size, mostly from a left-wing influx. Mr Lavery told the Huffington Post: “We are a broad church. Some might argue, and I would be one of them, that we might be too broad a church.
JEREMY Corbyn’s Labour party could permanently split in two as the Blairite faction is plotting to form a new centralist group, it has been revealed. Supporters of Tony Blair, 64, could leave Labour and set up their own more moderate party if Mr Corbyn’s allies start deselecting MPs, sources have said. Former party donors have been approached about backing a new party, according to The Sunday Times. The move comes after supporters of Jeremy Corbyn indicated that they wanted to purge critics of the leader and change the party’s rules in order to strengthen their position at the party’s conference in September.
The number of nurses has gone down for the first time in almost a decade after a record proportion quit last year. There has been a 50 per cent surge in people giving up the job in recent years, meaning thousands more are leaving the profession than joining. It has led to warnings of an escalating staffing crisis. Ministers will be under greater pressure to raise NHS salaries after a week of conflicting signals and reports of division in the cabinet over relaxing a cap on public sector pay. Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary, is seeking a meeting with the chancellor to press the case for a rise for nurses, who earn £31,000 on average.
Nurses and midwives are leaving the profession in their droves amid rising workloads and low pay, new figures have revealed. The number quitting before they reach retirement age has increased by more than half in just four years, according to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). For the first time in recent history, more midwives and nurses are leaving the register than are joining, with homegrown UK nurses leaving in the largest numbers. Between 2016 and 2017, a fifth more people left the register than joined it, and among those first registered in the UK, the figure was 45 per cent. The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) called on the Government to scrap the pay cap as a matter of urgency to stem the numbers going.
The number of nurses and midwives leaving the profession has risen 51 per cent in just four years, with those under the age of retirement citing low pay and poor working conditions. New figures from the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) show that for the first time in recent history more midwives and nurses are leaving the register than are joining, with homegrown UK nurses leaving in the largest numbers. Between 2016 and 2017, 20 per cent more people left the register than joined it, and among those first registered in the UK, the figure was 45 per cent. The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) called on the Government to scrap the pay cap as a matter of urgency to stem the numbers going.
More nurses and midwives are leaving the profession in the UK than joining it, for the first time since 2008, figures show. The number registered in the UK fell by 1,783 to 690,773, in the year to March. The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) said the downward trend had been most pronounced among British workers. Many leavers cited working conditions. But the government said there were now 13,000 more nurses working in England than in 2010. In April and May this year, there was a more dramatic fall in those leaving nursing and midwifery, with a further 3,264 workers going. Other than retirement, the main reasons given for leaving were working conditions – including staffing levels and workload – personal circumstances and disillusion with quality of care to patients, according to an NMC survey of more than 4,500 leavers.
BARGAIN-BASEMENT Britain has lost more than 10,000 nurses and midwives over the last four years, driven out by poverty pay and worsening working conditions. The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) said more nurses were leaving than joining the profession, with those from Britain leaving in the largest numbers. The latest stats add to mounting pressure on the Tories to end their hated public-sector pay cap. Alarmingly, the NMC study shows that workers below retirement age are leaving at over twice the rate than in 2012-13. Overall, the number of leavers — including workers from overseas — rose from 23,087 in that period to 34,941 in 2016-17. Those who first registered for the profession in Britain made up 85 per cent of the entire register.
Britons travelling to Calais could be allowed to drive on the left hand side of the road in a government initiative that aims to entice tourists back to the troubled coastal city. High ranking politicians in northern France are proposing the novel idea after seeing numbers of visitors crossing the English Channel dip due to safety fears. Calais was once considered the UK’s gateway to France however its image has been tarred by the thousands of migrants who have tried to use the city as a spring board to Britain. Britons travelling to Calais could be allowed to drive on the left hand side of the road in a government initiative that aims to entice tourists back to the troubled coastal city.
BRITS travelling to Calais will be allowed to drive on the left hand side of the road – to make them feel more at home. Top politicians in the northern French town are proposing the radical idea that would attract more tourists to the port. The town’s image has been blighted by thousands of migrants flocking there to try to cross the Channel to Britain. But authorities think it would be workable to allow Brits coming off the ferry or Channel Tunnel to drive around the town as if they were in Britain.Politician Xavier Bertrand, president of the Northern France region said he wanted to let Brits drive on the left in France to make them feel more welcome.
Authorities have described “escalating violence” in the transit city of Calais, France, following two days of fighting when over 100 Eritrean and Ethiopian migrants clashed, attacking one another with stones and sticks leaving over a dozen hospitalised. Le Figaro reports that following clashes late Friday evening, a second mass brawl broke out between groups of Eritrean and Ethiopian migrants who have travelled illegally from Africa in hopes of smuggling themselves to the UK. According to Philippe Mignonet, deputy mayor of Calais in charge of security, police intervened Friday night attending to four separate brawls, using tear gas to disperse the Africans.
Education Secretary Justine Greening is lobbying for more than £1billion to ease pressure on school budgets. Miss Greening is urging the Prime Minister to make the announcement as soon as possible, so schools can plan for the next academic year, which starts in September. ‘If there’s going to be a fix it’s a case of the sooner the better,’ the source said. She has told Theresa May more money is needed to reassure parents enraged at the prospect of cuts at their children’s schools. Backbench MPs have told Downing Street school funding was a major issue with voters during the election.
The Conservatives have been accused of failing to protect the countryside after research revealed that the number of new homes being planned on green belt in England had increased by over 50% since last year and the majority were not classed as affordable. Theresa May told parliament in February that the government was “very clear that the green belt must be protected”, but 425,000 new homes are currently planned for sites designated to protect against urban sprawl, up from 273,000 in March 2016, according to research by the Campaign to Protect Rural England. More than 70% of those are not classed as affordable, a category that includes social housing and homes rented by housing associations for up to 80% of market rent.
Ukip is facing potential takeover by far-right forces after a large number of new members joined in an apparent attempt to back a leadership candidate who has described Islam as “evil”, party sources have said. With the race to take over from Paul Nuttall wide open after Nigel Farage announced he would not stand again, sources say the arrival of about 1,000 new members in two weeks has sparked fears of “infiltration” by supporters of Anne Marie Waters. With little more than 15,000 votes in total cast when Nuttall won the leadership last November, some within Ukip fear it would not take many more new members to potentially push a tight race Waters’s way.