UKIP

Express
UKIP will help Britons “get back control” of their communities after Brexit, leader Paul Nuttall vowed tonight. Launching the anti-EU party’s local election campaign, the MEP hit out at establishment politicians and council fat-cats. He said: “We will make sure residents get value for money from their councils, and the services that they deserve. “Ukip councillors are not whipped, like old party councillors. We tell our councillors to put community before party.” Mr Nuttall cited shocking research showing 539 council bosses have higher salaries than Theresa May. And some are even paid more than Donald Trump, according to figures released by the Taxpayers’ Alliance pressure group. The 40-year-old said: “The establishment parties have let this situation happen. It has been on their watch.”

BBC News
UK Independence Party leader Paul Nuttall has said that if people want their “country back… their community back” they should go out and vote UKIP. Mr Nuttall, speaking to UKIP councillors and supporters in Boston, said the party was the only one which never told its councillors how to vote. This meant they always put “their community before party”, he said. UKIP is defending more than 140 council seats won in 2013 in England, in 4 May’s local elections. The party does not have any councillors in Scotland and is defending just two council seats in Wales.

Russia

Times
Boris Johnson was left embarrassed last night after his demands for fresh sanctions against Russia over its backing for President Assad of Syria were publicly rebuffed by European allies. The final communiqué after a two-day meeting of G7 nations in Lucca, Italy, made no mention of the foreign secretary’s proposal to isolate Vladimir Putin and impose sanctions on Russian military figures. Italy and France rejected Mr Johnson’s position, and one senior Tory described the outcome as a humiliation for Britain. The comments came as Rex Tillerson, the US secretary of state, flew to Moscow to confront the Kremlin over its support for Assad after a gas attack last week that led the US to respond with missile strikes on a Syrian airbase.

Independent
Britain and America have failed to win immediate support from European allies for new sanctions on Russia following the chemical weapons attack in Syria. Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, spearheaded the drive at a G7 meeting of foreign ministers for punitive measures against Moscow, but could not win the full-throated backing he wanted from Germany, Italy or the wider European Union. British officials insisted that targeted sanctions are still on the table, but that moving forward with them would have to wait for a full investigation into the attack which killed scores in the rebel-held village of Khan Sheikhoun. Allies from the EU and Canada had also underlined the need for due process before moving on with any new programme of sanctions, the G7 did agree that no solution to the crisis in Syria was possible while Bashar al-Assad remained in power.

Mirror
Boris Johnson has been dealt a major blow after his bid for sanctions against Russia and Syria was rejected by fellow G7 foreign ministers. The Foreign Secretary had urged the world’s richest nations to take targeted action against individuals, such as those in the military, in response to last week’s chemical weapons attack. Arriving at a summit in Lucca, Italy, he branded Syrian President Assad a “tyrant” and said Russia’s backing of him must stop. But today G7 ministers said the chemical attack, which killed 87 in a rebel-held town, should be investigated before new measures could be adopted. Backing down today, Mr Johnson said sanctions should still be considered – but after a chemical weapons inspection and resolution in the UN Security Council. “What we’re doing now is tabling a resolution in the UN Security Council, there’s going to be a chemical weapons inspection group investigation into exactly what happened,” Mr Johnson told Sky News.

Telegraph
Boris Johnson has insisted Russia could still be hit with tough sanctions over its support for Syria after he was attacked by members of his own Government for failing to build an international coalition to take on Vladimir Putin. The Foreign Secretary left a G7 summit of foreign ministers without securing backing for his plans for sanctions after Italy, France and Germany publicly rebuffed him, saying Mr Putin must not be “pushed into a corner”. A communiqué issued by the G7 made no mention of sanctions but included a significant new agreement that Bashar al-Assad  cannot stay on as Syrian president.

Syria

Mail
Syrian president Bashar al-Assad should be put on trial for war crimes after tests revealed sarin gas was used in an attack which killed nearly 90 people, Turkey‘s health minister has said. Analysis of blood and urine samples from the attack in the northwestern Idlib province proved the use of the nerve agent, experts stated. 
Recep Akdag made the comments today after he announced that blood and urine tests on victims confirmed the presence of the lethal gas. Akdag, in comments reported by the state-run Anadolu agency, said that international organizations and United Nations, ‘should declare Assad as a war criminal and put him on trial.’ He said: ‘It has been identified that sarin gas was used.’

Express
JEREMY CORBYN today refused to answer a question on Syria as world leaders met to discuss what further action to take against the war-torn country’s regime. The Labour leader sparked a row with a BBC reporter as he insisted he would not offer his views on the growing crisis during a press conference this morning. Following a speech to the Federation of Small Businesses in London, Mr Corbyn angrily blocked a question on Syria as he demanded the reporter only ask about Labour’s business policies. At the same time, foreign ministers from the G7 nations were meeting in Italy to discuss whether to place fresh sanctions on Syrian officials and their Russian backers. It follows a recent horror chemical weapons attack on civilians, including many children, which has been blamed on Syria’s brutal dictator Bashar al-Assad.

Electoral fraud

Mirror
Potential voters have until tomorrow to register for next month’s elections – the last major polls before some voters will be asked to show ID before casting their ballot. A pilot project for the May 2018 polls will require certain electors to prove who they are before having their say, in the latest crackdown on voter fraud. They might need to show a passport, driving licence or utility bill before being handed a ballot paper to cross. But Labour fears the move will leave the elderly, ethnic minorities and less well-off citizens less likely to take part. Shadow Minister for Voter Engagement and Youth Affairs Cat Smith said: “Labour takes allegations of electoral fraud very seriously and condemns any action that seeks to undermine our democracy or weaken our tradition of free and fair elections.

Brexit

Independent
Highly skilled British people could work in the European Union after Brexit under an expanded visa scheme, a new report claims. According to the new analysis by Migration Watch, the right-wing think thank that campaigns for more stringent immigration controls, the proposed expansion of the “Blue Card” scheme could “provide opportunities for British nationals to work in the EU even without any special agreement following the Brexit negotiations”. The scheme, which is modelled on the United States’ green card programme, aims to give highly qualified workers from outside the EU the right to live and work in a member state provided they meet specific conditions.

EU

Westmonster
If anyone was under any illusions that the EU is not a totally rigged system, the unfolding story of the EU’s draft Brexit guidelines will surely eradicate them. The guidelines, published 48 hours after the Prime Minister’s EU withdrawal letter at the end of last month were put together by uber-establishment figure and European Council President Donald Tusk and his team of highly-paid bureaucrats. Ludicrously, the guidelines give Spain a possible Brexit-deal over Gibraltar. Under any normal democratic exercise, the guidelines would then go through a political grinder, coming out the other end a totally different shape. The EU27 were supposed to be that grinder, but early indications are that they will be left untouched. “I have not heard any rumbles of any bit of the guidelines being out of kilter with the general view,” said a senior diplomat.

Reuters
The European Union should tell London to cut red tape that makes it hard for EU expats to confirm their residence in Britain, senior EU officials said after a meeting in Brussels on Tuesday to prepare for Brexit talks. Advisers to the 27 other EU government leaders broadly endorsed draft guidelines for negotiations with Britain on its withdrawal. In a mark of fireworks to come when talks get under way in early June, some pressed for clearer, tougher wording on how much Britain must pay to cover its commitments to the Union. And, in highlighting their priority to ease uncertainty for some 3 million EU citizens there, many voiced concern that British administrative rules were adding to people’s worries.

Breitbart
The European People’s Party, which includes European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker as a member, has called for a ban on the Islamic face veil in the whole of the European Union. The group, which is the largest in the European Parliament, passed a resolution at its annual congress calling for the ban, saying it would be beneficial for integration and security. The resolution, named “For a cohesive society: Countering Islamic extremism”, also opposed housing thousands of “third country nationals” in one place and said migrants should be expected to integrate into wider society if they are to continue receiving benefits, the 
Daily Mail reports.

Foreign aid

Express
NEW international analysis has revealed that Britain is paying more than three times its fair share of foreign aid compared to the rest of the world. One in every eight pounds spent in handouts to poor countries around the world is funded by the British taxpayer, the latest figures by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) have revealed. While Britain had a major funding crisis in schools and hospitals the Government was still able to spend more than £13billion on foreign countries in 2016. This was from a total worldwide aid budget of £100 billion. Ukip international aid spokeswoman Lisa Duffy pointed out that the UK’s share of world GDP is 3.5 per cent but it is paying 12.5 per cent of the world’s aid budget. She said: “It is an outrage that UK taxpayers are forking out more than three times what any man or woman regard as fair.

Westmonster
It has been confirmed that the government are now giving away over £13 billion of British taxpayers’ money each year in foreign aid. The UK accounted for nearly 1 in every 8 pounds given away, coughing up over £13 billion to be wasted in an increasingly dodgy foreign aid industry. At least £300 million was recently lost to fraud and the likes of India have even said that they don’t need the UK’s hand outs. Some of the money Britain has given away has been spent on malls and retail stories, not exactly a humanitarian crisis. Whilst the country faces an NHS crisis, housing crisis and school place shortage, the Tory government are going on with the Labour policy of handing away billions each year. Just as the political class took a while to catch up on public opinion when it came to EU membership and border controls, this cannot last. Handing over some money to genuine causes is fine, but this colossal giveaway simply cannot be justified.

Sun
BRITAIN gives an eighth of all the foreign aid donated by 29 richest nations, figures reveal. We paid £13.5billion of a record £105.6billion handed over by the top countries, dwarfing all those but the US and Germany. It works out at £203 per person in the UK – more than three times as much as Italian and Spaniards pay. MPs said our contribution, up 8.4 per cent on 2015, made Britain look like a “soft touch” and demanded an immediate rethink. Britain is now one of just six countries that meet the UN’s target of donating 0.7 per cent of national income to foreign aid, sparked fresh demands for Theresa May to follow in the other nation’s footsteps and ditch the “arbitrary” target. Our foreign aid budget has shot up at the same time as domestic spending on social care and education has fallen. 
And recent scandals have seen our foreign aid wasted on failed green energy projects and a £5.2million fund to help a pop group dubbed the Ethiopian Spice Girls.

North Korea

Mail
President Donald Trump said repeatedly that North Korea’s president Kim Jong-un is doing the ‘wrong thing’ as he talked up the power of the U.S. ‘armada’ heading toward the tense Korean peninsula. Asked whether he considers Kim mentally fit, Trump told Fox News: ‘I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know him. But he’s doing the wrong thing.’ He held back from interviewer Maria Bartiromo what his plans might be – as he stated the immense capabilities of the naval strike group that is en route.  ‘We are sending an armada. Very powerful,’ Trump said. ‘We have submarines. Very powerful. Far more powerful than the aircraft carrier, that I can tell you. And we have the best military people on earth. And I will say this: He is doing the wrong thing.’ 

Sun
NORTH Korea has threatened to nuke the US after Donald Trump said despot Kim Jong-un was “looking for trouble” in a series of provocative tweets. Kim’s army is understood to have its “nuclear sights” on the US mainland as well as US bases in South Korea and the Pacific. North Korea’s state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper said the country was prepared to hit back at any US aggression. “Our revolutionary strong army is keenly watching every move by enemy elements with our nuclear sight,” the paper said. “We are focused on the U.S. invasionary bases not only in South Korea and the Pacific operation theatre but also in the U.S. mainland.”

Star
THE US naval fleet sent to deal with Kim Jong-un will be joined by Japanese warships as the ruthless leader faces annihilation. North Korea has enemies surrounding its borders after causing global terror with its nuclear weapons programme. Kim Jong-un has threatened to nuke many of his neighbours and the US as the dastardly dictator flexes his muscles. In response, Donald Trump has sent its naval fleet to the Korean peninsula over fears of North Korea’s ICBM development. And it has now been revealed that Japanese warships will be joining the Carl Vinson as Kim’s reign of terror faces collapse. A military source said: “Japan wants to dispatch several destroyers as the Carl Vinson enters the East China Sea.”

NHS

Mail
Two in five GPs are planning to quit their jobs within five years in an exodus that could cripple the NHS, research published today suggests. A Government-funded study of the problem warned health bosses that the ability of the NHS to provide effective care was at risk. ‘Acknowledgement of the magnitude of the problems is urgently required,’ the researchers said in the BMJ Open medical journal.  ‘Failure to do so will risk serious adverse effects on the capacity and ability of the NHS to provide effective primary care.’ They added that rock-bottom morale was contributing to the crisis – despite GPs still benefiting from an extraordinarily generous contract introduced barely a decade ago that saw their pay rocket and working hours plummet.

Education

Morning Star
TEACHERS should be paid for time spent marking, conducting detentions and phoning parents, a teaching union said yesterday. Amid warnings of an ongoing crisis in teacher workload, delegates at the Association of Teachers and Lecturers conference called for “directed time” to be redefined as including all tasks necessary for the job. A motion overwhelmingly passed at the conference said there was huge variation in whether schools allowed teachers time for such duties. But it said such lenience was “on the fast-track road to extinction.” The conference also heard stories of part-time teachers performing such tasks on their days off, and having to attend staff training days without pay. “Life is for living,” Somerset delegate Emma Weetch told the hall. “Do not let your work consume it.”

Carswell

Independent
Ukip should “disband” and “go home” after achieving its primary objective of taking Britain out of the EU, the party’s former MP has said. Douglas Carswell was the only Ukip MP to be elected at the 2015 general election but he quit at the end of March after a long-running feud with other elements within the party. Asked what he thought should happen to Ukip now, Mr Carswell joked about Nigel Farage’s reported wish to be knighted and said that “if you’ve won a battle or a war you disband and you go home”.

Express
DOUGLAS CARSWELL has sparked a fresh row with his former party by suggesting Ukip should “disband” and “go home” following last summer’s Brexit vote. The Clacton MP recently quit Ukip claiming it was “job done” now the UK had chosen to quit the EU. The one-time Tory defector has now advised Ukip as a whole to follow his example in the wake of the Prime Minister’s triggering of Article 50 to formally notify Brussels of the UK’s departure. Asked what should happen to his old party now that the Brexit process had officially begun, Mr Carswell told an Institute for Government event: “Job done. It’s one of those really weird things … anyone who stuck a microphone under my chin for the last ten years will have heard me say we’ve got to leave the EU. “Theresa May then triggers Article 50 and I say ‘job done’ and everyone says ‘what did you mean by that?’.

Prince Charles

Star
PRINCE Charles has been offered a royal title in another country after it was revealed he is related to its former ruler. Charles has been waiting for a few decades to become the king in Britain but he might be tempted to take up a new offer to become a Prince of Transylvania. A Romanian mayor offered the 68-year-old an honorary title because of the heir’s love of the area. The Prince is also descended from Vlad The Impaler, the local ruler who put his enemies on wooden spikes and became the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Charles owns two 400-year-old holiday homes in the area and is said to be “bewitched” by Transylvania, its countryside and environment. The Mayor of the city of Alba Iulia, the former capital of Transylvania, has now extended a formal invitation to the Prince of Wales to receive the honorific title of Prince of Transylvania. 
In a letter to Prince Charles Mayor Mircea Hava, said: “We know how much you love Transylvania. “It has become your second home and you have been the region’s most valuable ambassador.

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