BRITAIN has taken a major step towards independence from the EU by formally circulating its tariff schedules at the World Trade Organisation (WTO). The move means that Britain is ready for a World Trade Deal where the UK relies on international rules instead of striking a formal trade deal with the EU and is free to make free trade agreements around the world as well as set its own regulations. And it is a signal to the EU that the UK will not be bullied and is ready even if obstinate negotiators in Brussels led by Michel Barnier refuse to strike a fair deal.
Britain today is taking back control of its representation at the World Trade Organisation from the EU. During the WTO’s 23 year history Britain has been forced to accept the EU as its representative, but today both the UK and EU have officially filed for divorce with separate draft membership agreements. The British Ambassador Julian Braithwaite hailed the occasion as “an important milestone as we prepare for our departure from the EU”. An independent UK trade policy was a major factor during the referendum campaign, with the Leave campaign arguing Britain could take back control from Brussels and sign its own trade deals.
The British public’s faith in Theresa May to deliver on Brexit is absolutely collapsing, as confirmed by yet another poll. In May 2017, ICM found that 47% of people trusted May to do the best job of negotiating Brexit. That number has now nosedived to 26% as the backlash against her Chequers plan continues. That isn’t an endorsement of Jeremy Corbyn by any stretch – he’s only backed by 18% of people when it comes to Brexit. As ICM’s Alex Turk makes clear: “We’ve seen those who trust neither May nor Corbyn to negotiate a good Brexit deal jump from 31% in January to 44% in this poll.”
Theresa May has suggested the public should take “comfort” from Government plans to stockpile medicines and food for a “no deal” Brexit as she said “we don’t know what the outcome is going to be”. Critics have accused ministers of trying to scare MPs into backing Mrs May’s Brexit vision with talk of hoarding essential supplies, but Mrs May said such precautions were only “responsible and sensible”. However, Ireland’s Deputy Prime Minister accused Mrs May of “bravado”, insisting Britain “cannot afford” to crash out of the EU.
Theresa May says the British public should take ‘reassurance and comfort’ in the Government’s plans to stockpile food and medicines for a no-deal Brexit . In an interview with 5 News on Wednesday, the Prime Minister did not deny stockpiling is happening, but said the Government is being “responsible and sensible” while still trying to get a good deal with the European Union. It came after Health Secretary Matt Hancock told MPs on Tuesday he had asked officials to “work up options for stockpiling” by the pharmaceutical industry, and Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab said the Government would also take steps to ensure an “adequate food supply”.
Theresa May last night faced claims she was plotting to ‘scare people witless’ with a summer of warnings about a ‘no-deal’ Brexit. Brexiteers complained that ministers were attempting to ‘weaponise’ preparations for leaving the EU without an agreement. The Prime Minister yesterday said the public should ‘take comfort’ that the Government was putting in place contingencies such as stockpiling medicine and food. But an ally of Mrs May claimed her plans to release 70 official documents in the coming weeks on how to prepare for the possibility of leaving the EU without a deal were aimed at building support for her beleaguered Brexit blueprint from Chequers.
Theresa May has urged voters not to worry about Brexit, despite her government setting out plans to stockpile food, blood and medicine in case it goes badly. he said people should take “reassurance and comfort” from news of the plans, to be implemented if the UK crashes out of the EU without an agreement in March next year. The scenario is looking increasingly likely given deep divisions in the Conservatives over Ms May’s approach, her wafer thin commons majority and the EU’s on-going resistance to what the prime minister is proposing.
The Independent’s petition calling for the British people to have a final say on the government’s Brexit deal has been signed by 100,000 people in just nine hours. The Final Say campaign demands the electorate is given a vote before the UK leaves the EU in 2019. Tens of thousands of people signed the petition within hours of its launch and the petition reached more than 100,000 signatures by Wednesday evening. The campaign has the backing of senior members of parliament, including ex-cabinet minister Dominic Grieve, who said it was a “sensible” way out of the UK’s current political crisis.
Darren Grimes, the BeLeave Brexit hero of the revolution who has been hit with a huge personal £20,000 fine by the Electoral Commission – for the crime of accidentally ticking the wrong box – is crowdfunding an appeal. Darren is raising £20,000 to fight the decision and expose the Electoral Commission’s shameless Remain bias. The Remainer-stuffed Electoral Commission has repeatedly refused to investigate the Remain campaign despite the huge evidence against them, setting a different standard for the Leave campaign and vindictively pursuing a 24 year-old Brexiteer with the maximum fine for the flimsiest of charges.
The Jewish community would face an ‘existential threat’ if Jeremy Corbyn became prime minister, the country’s three main Jewish newspapers warn today. In an unprecedented step, the Jewish News, Jewish Chronicle and Jewish Telegraph published a joint front page editorial voicing fears that power could be handed to a man who has ‘contempt for Jews and Israel‘. It highlighted how the ‘stain and shame of anti-Semitism’ had flourished in the Labour Party since Mr Corbyn became leader in 2015.
Jeremy Corbyn is facing a blistering new onslaught on anti-Semitism, with three Jewish newspapers declaring on their front pages: “United we stand.” The Jewish Chronicle, Jewish Telegraph and Jewish News all carry the same hard-hitting editorial claiming a Corbyn government would be a threat to Jewish life. The papers’ attack, following a clash between Mr Corbyn’s supporters and Labour MPs over the definition of anti-Semitism this week, is a declaration of war on the Labour leader.
Labour has instructed a top firm of lawyers to begin legally-proofing its programme for government so that it is “water tight” against future court challenge. Party chiefs believe radical policies being proposed by Jeremy Corbyn will make it one of the most targeted administrations in living history. Certain proposals in particular have been highlighted as likely to attract a particular backlash from vested interests, including Labour’s nationalisation programme and a planned crackdown on dirty money in the City of London.
The Irish government has dismissed Theresa May’s threat to crash out of the EU without a deal if necessary as “bravado”, insisting the damage to the UK would be too great. Simon Coveney, Dublin’s deputy prime minister, instead urged Britain to delay Brexit if the talks remain deadlocked – offering to press for an extension to the Article 50 deadline. The UK government has insisted its threat of no deal is genuine – even revealing plans for the stockpiling of food, medicines and blood ahead of exit day next March. But Mr Coveney said: “I have heard a lot of comment on this issue in recent weeks and, to be honest with you, I think some of it is bravado.
Britain could be trapped in the European Union (EU) for even longer than the four years and nine months since the vote to leave that has already been agreed, it has emerged Wednesday. The UK voted to leave the bloc in June 2016, but it took nine months to trigger Article 50, a two-year leaving process, which is then to be followed by a two-year “implementation period” agreed by the Prime Minister. And on Wednesday, the Irish deputy prime minister (pictured, left) suggested extending the Article 50 period past the eight months remaining.
Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney has warned that the UK “cannot afford” to leave the EU without a deal. Speaking to the Today programme Mr Coveney described talk of the UK “crashing out of the EU” as “bravado”. The UK is due to leave the EU on 29 March 2019 but has yet to agree how its final relationship with the bloc will work. Mr Coveney said the negative implications of a no deal Brexit are “very significant for Ireland and for the UK”. “I don’t believe Britain crashing out of the EU without any agreed process is likely to happen.
BREXIT negotiations should be paused for five years to resolve the deadlock between Brussels and the UK, a political expert has claimed. Prof Helmut K Anheier, a German-American academic, urged EU officials to delay Britain’s exit from the bloc until 2024. The UK is currently due to quit the EU on March 29 next year, under plans outlined in Theresa May‘s landmark Withdrawal Bill. But in shock remarks, Prof Anheier said a five-year break was needed to avert the impending “disaster” of Brexit. Raising concerns about the current state of negotiations, he said: “Since the ill-fated 2016 referendum, things have not gone well.
European leaders plan to let Theresa May sell her Brexit blueprint directly to member states in an effort to kickstart stalled talks on Britain’s departure. A meeting in Salzburg in September is being lined up as the venue where the prime minister can hold direct talks to avert a no-deal Brexit. The proposal emerged after the intervention of Angela Merkel, who is concerned at the apparent drift in the talks. A government source said last night that it could be “Britain’s last chance” to sell a compromise that would avoid a hard Brexit. Dominic Raab, the new Brexit secretary, is due to meet Michel Barnier, the European Commission’s chief negotiator, today for a second round of talks.
British people undermining the country through “extreme EU loyalty” must be tried for treason, a Tory MEP says. David Campbell Bannerman has been accused of “putting the knife into free speech” after demanding the revival of an archaic law to prosecute strong allegiance to the EU. “It is about time we brought the Treason Act up to date and made it apply to those seeking to destroy or undermine the British state,” he tweeted. “That means extreme jihadis. It also means those in future actively working undemocratically against U.K. through extreme EU loyalty.”
People who “undermine” the UK with “extreme EU loyalty” should be tried for treason, a Conservative MEP has said. David Bannerman, who represents the East of England in the European Parliament, took aim at all those “seeking to destroy or undermine the British state” and compared them to “jihadists”. The MEP was responding to calls for the UK’s treason laws to be updated to include two British-born IS terrorists – Alexanda Kotey and El Shafee Elsheikh, members of the cell called “the Beatles”. Mr Bannerman wrote on Twitter: “It is about time we brought the Treason Act (of 1372) up to date and made it apply to those seeking to destroy or undermine the British state.
The European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator has rebuked a British MEP after he suggested that Remainers who side with the EU over the UK should be tried for treason. Guy Verhofstadt said David Campbell Bannerman, a Tory, was trying to force his “narrow view” of national identity of the peoples of Europe and that the politician’s comments were “insane”. Mr Campbell Bannerman was accused by one MP of “putting the knife into free speech” after demanding the revival of an archaic law to prosecute strong allegiance to the EU.
The home secretary has ordered research into why men convicted of grooming-gang sex crimes are disproportionately of Pakistani origin. Sajid Javid, whose own family roots are in Pakistan, said that establishing the “particular characteristics” of the perpetrators was “critical to our understanding” of offending in places including Rotherham, Telford and Newcastle. He made the commitment in a letter to Sarah Champion, the Labour MP who was strongly criticised for stating that the country “has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls”.
Sajid Javid has ordered research into the ethnic origin of sexual grooming gangs, it was reported last night. The Home Secretary apparently wants to discover why men convicted of group sex crimes are disproportionately of Pakistani origin. Mr Javid, whose family roots are in Pakistan, said exploring the ‘particular characteristics’ of offenders was ‘critical to our understanding’ of what happened across the country, including in Newcastle, Telford and Rotherham. He revealed the plan in a letter to Sarah Champion, according to The Times. She is the Labour MP who has come under fire for highlighting the issues.
Donald Trump and the European Union struck an unexpected deal and averted an all-out trade war on Wednesday night. Following a meeting at the White House with Jean-Claude Juncker, the European Commission president, Mr Trump said there was a “new phase” in relations, and it was a “very big day for free and fair trade”. He said the US and the EU had agreed to work toward “zero tariffs” on industrial goods, apart from cars. The US president said: “We agreed today, first of all, to work together toward zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers and zero subsidies on non-auto industrial goods.
President Trump backed away from a trade war with the European Union last night, agreeing to work with the bloc on abolishing transatlantic tariffs. Mr Trump announced that negotiations would start immediately as he hailed “a new phase” in America’s relationship with the EU. In a statement at the White House alongside Jean-Claude Juncker, president of the European Commission, he said that both sides would “work together towards zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers and zero subsidies” on industrial goods. Mr Trump said that the negotiations would “resolve” the steep American tariffs on European steel and aluminium imposed by his administration this year, as well as the EU’s retaliatory duties.
Donald Trump has hailed a “very big day for free and fair trade” after reaching a deal to avert a full-blown trade war with the EU. Following talks with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at the White House, Mr Trump said the US and EU had agreed to work to resolve their current dispute. Last month, the US president slapped tariffs on steel and aluminium imports, prompting tit-for-tat measures by Brussels, including tariffs on bourbon whiskey, Levi’s jeans and Harley-Davidson motorbikes. Subsequently, Mr Trump had warned of retaliatory action on EU carmakers.
President Donald Trump and European Commissioner Jean-Claude Juncker gave a late-announced press conference in the White House Rose Garden Wednesday as they announced an agreement to work toward and operate in the spirit of a “zero tariffs, zero non-tariff barriers, zero subsidies on non-auto industrial goods” trade deal. The United States and the European Union together account for more than $830 million citizens and more than 50 percent of the global GDP,” said Trump, adding this means they make up more than 50 percent of trade. “If we team up, we can make our planet a better, more secure, and prosperous place.”
President Donald Trump sat down with European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker and kept the EU off the list of countries he said erected ‘massive barriers’ against U.S. trade. Trump made the statement amid tense talks with Europe, China, Mexico, and Canada amid multi-front trade wars kicked off by U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum. He called for an ideal scenario of having ‘no barriers,’ while his European counterpart pointed to huge trade ties across the Atlantic. Trump praised Juncker, who physically stumbled at this month’s NATO summit in Brussels, as a ‘very smart man and a tough man that represents his people well and the countries well,’ and touched Juncker on the leg at one point while seated next to him in the Oval Office.
There is at least one thing about this summer of 2018 on which we can all agree: the past months have unquestionably been swelteringly, abnormally hot. And not just here in Britain, but in many other countries right across the northern hemisphere. In the UK, our own heatwave began in May and has continued relentlessly ever since. In Japan, where one city claimed the highest temperature ever recorded in that country, topping 106 degrees Fahrenheit (41 degrees Centigrade), the heatwave has been declared ‘a natural disaster’. Meanwhile, wildfires in Greece have killed at least 80 people, leading to claims that this has been the worst disaster of its kind seen in Europe since World War II.
THE RISK of unusual heatwaves during summer and “natural catastrophes” is predicted to increase significantly as global warming produces “greater weather extremes”, climate experts have said.Britain and other countries across the world have been sweltering in some of the longest heatwaves and highest temperatures ever recorded this summer. A “remarkable” summer of prolonged heatwaves in the UK could prove to be the hottest since records began if average maximum daily temperatures creep above 21C, set in 1976. Searing hot weather between May and July has melted train tracks, warped roofs, sparked dangerous wildfires and left parts of Britain deprived of rain for months.
Scotland is bracing itself for a rush of gold prospectors after Britain’s largest nugget was discovered in a river. The 85.7g find, which has been dubbed the “Douglas Nugget”, is the width of golf ball and worth at least £50,000 — and potentially much more. The British precious metal collector who found it wishes to remain anonymous but has spoken of the moment that he made the discovery of a lifetime. The man, who is in his forties, said that he had been using a snorkel to search a riverbed — a technique known as “sniping”. He said: “I was following a crack in the bedrock and found around 2g in fine gold. This then led to a pocket where I uncovered the nugget.