Brexit

Express
DAVID Davis has declared MPs and Lords in Parliament will not be able to stop Brexit, as he spoke with the European Scrutiny Committee today in a major blow to Remainers hoping to overrule the EU referendum David Davis said MPs would not get a veto on Brexit, adding: “I don’t believe in the meaningful vote overruling the referendum.” The Brexit Secretary referred to his earlier comments made in the House of Commons last November, where he announced Parliament would have a vote on the agreement but would not be able to reverse the decision. Mr Davis was also asked by Marcus Fish of the European Scrutiny Committee if he could “guarantee” if a political Withdrawal Agreement was reached by the end March it would be ratified and adopted.

Independent
David Davis says Britain and the EU still disagree on so many aspects of the planned Brexit transition deal that he cannot remember them all. There are “about 11 areas of difference” with a crucial EU summit intended to seal the deal only just over two weeks away, the Brexit Secretary said before an inquiry by MPs. “I can’t list them all from memory, but I could send you a list if you want,” he told the Commons European Scrutiny Committee. It came as Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament’s Brexit spokesman, said he hopes the issue of citizens’ rights during the transition can be concluded in the coming weeks.  Mr Davis said the Irish border was the “biggest and most obvious issue”, but also pointed to the UK’s demand to be able to challenge new EU laws and the rights of EU citizens as other hurdles.

BBC News
Chancellor Philip Hammond will tell European leaders that it is in the “mutual interest” of both the UK and the EU to include financial services in a free trade agreement. In a speech, Mr Hammond will set out his argument against “sceptics”, saying it is possible to reach a deal. The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, has argued that such a deal had never been done before. But Mr Hammond will say the EU has in the past attempted similar agreements. In December, Mr Barnier said: “There is not a single trade agreement that is open to financial services. It doesn’t exist.”

Telegraph
Philip Hammond will warn the EU that it will be harming its own interests if it refuses to include financial services in a Brexit deal with the UK. The Chancellor will challenge Brussels’ insistence that financial services – which make up £96 billion of British exports to the EU – cannot be part of a future free trade agreement between the UK and the EU in a major speech on Brexit on Wednesday. Prices for financial services will go up on both sides of the Channel if a deal does not include loans, car finance and other everyday transactions, Mr Hammond will say. He insists that every trade deal the EU has ever done has been unique.

Guardian
Philip Hammond will insist on Wednesday that Britain can overcome EU opposition and include financial services in a post-Brexit free trade deal. The chancellor is expected to use a speech in the City to challenge the idea – voiced strongly by France’s finance minister on Tuesday – that financial services have never been included in trade deals because of their complexity and the risks to stability. Hammond will argue that every trade deal the EU has concluded in the past has been unique and that is “time to address the sceptics who say a trade deal including financial services cannot be done because it has never been done before”.

Express
TRADE with 70 countries risks annihilation come next March’s Brexit Day unless ministers secure legal guarantees to roll over existing agreements, a report warns today. More than 10 per cent of UK exports would face an immediate hike in tariffs on B-Day, according to the Commons International Trade committee. MPs have chosen to call on Trade Secretary Liam Fox to secure a “legally watertight” deal to make sure current free trade agreements which we have as a member of the EU will continue after Brexit. The 40 trade deals cover 70 countries and include 10 of the UK’s top 50 export markets. As the EU has trade-related agreements with a total of 168 countries, the committee has warned of poignant potential threats otherwise.

Mail
Ryanair’s chief executive has threatened to ground planes after Brexit  in a bid to force Britain to ‘rethink’ its decision to leave the EU. Michael O’Leary – a  vocal Remainer – said he is considering carrying out the stunt to show voters they were ‘lied to’ during the 2016 campaign. He said the tactic would hammer home to Britons that cheap holidays will become more expensive after Britain quits the Brussels club. But Tory MP and Brexiteer Peter Bone slammed the ‘politically motivated’ threat and told Mail Online it would not succeed in blackmailing Britons and just harm the air carrier’s profits.

Star
MAJOR airline Ryanair could ground all its planes when Britain officially leaves the EU and leave thousands of holidaymakers stranded. The Irish Dublin-based carrier is threatening to cancel all flights in the UK from Friday, March 29, 2019 to force Brits to have a second vote on Brexit. Its chief executive Michael O’Leary, a staunch Remain voter, wants to use it to make people realise they are “no longer going to have cheap holidays”. He told an audience of airline leaders in Brussels: “I think it’s in our interests – not for a long period of time – that the aircraft are grounded. “It’s only when you get to that stage where you’re going to persuade the average British voter that you were lied to in the entire Brexit debate.

Mirror
Ryanair is threatening to ground its planes to persuade voters to “rethink”  Brexit . Michael O’Leary, the budget airline’s chief executive, said he wants to “create an opportunity” by making people realise they are “no longer going to have cheap holidays.” He told an audience of airline leaders in Brussels: “I think it’s in our interests – not for a long period of time – that the aircraft are grounded. “It’s only when you get to that stage where you’re going to persuade the average British voter that you were lied to in the entire Brexit debate. “You were promised you could leave the EU and everything would stay the same. The reality is you can leave the EU, yes that’s your choice, but everything will fundamentally change.”

Mail
European consumers will pay dearly if Brussels tries to punish the City, Philip Hammond will warn today. In the last of the Government’s ‘Road to Brexit’ speeches, the Chancellor will tell the EU it is ‘very much in our mutual interest’ to strike a trade deal giving extensive rights to Britain’s financial services sector. Mr Hammond will point out the critical role played by the City as the cornerstone of Europe’s financial system. And he will warn that European consumers would face higher prices for a wide range of goods, including cars, loans and fuel, if the City is cut out.

EU

Guardian
The EU has dismissed Theresa May’s Brexit speech as being more about Conservative party management than putting forward sensible solutions on trade, according to an internal document leaked to the Guardian. The Brussels analysis of the prime minister’s address, issued to representatives of all 27 member states, described her intervention as “a change in tone, but not in substance”, warning that all the UK’s red lines remained. And while it said the prime minister had promised clarity on Britain’s hopes for a future trading relationship, it described the model she proposed as unworkable and “double cherry-picking”. It also claimed there had been “zero progress” when it came to ideas for customs cooperation.

Sky News
The EU has criticised Theresa May’s latest speech on Brexit, describing it as “long on aspirations” but “short on workable solutions”. It also claims she addressed her comments mainly at a “domestic audience, trying to bridge the gaps between the two poles of the debate on Brexit in the UK”. In a document drawn up by the Council of the EU General Secretariat, seen by Sky News, the Prime Minister’s
speech on Friday is described as containing “a change in tone, but not in substance”. On “options for customs co-operation”, it says the address “only rehashed the Lancaster House speech of January 2017”. It describes the PM’s comments as being “highly ambiguous on the nature of the future economic partnership”.

Express
THERESA May’s Brexit stance has been slammed by top European Union officials, who claim the Prime Minister has “no solution” to avoid a hard Irish border. A leaked Brussels document takes aim at Mrs May following her Mansion House speech last week, laying out the UK’s position on Brexit. The internal memo from Jean-Claude Juncker‘s European Commission claims her address was more about “keeping the unity in her Cabinet” than putting forward “workable solutions” on trade with the EU. In another dig at the Prime Minister, it adds: “Her speech was more a domestic communication battle than proposing real substance and ways forward.” Although it admitted her speech was “positive and measured”, the European Commission document is largely scathing.

Mirror
The EU branded Theresa May’s approach to Brexit ‘double cherry picking’ in an internal document, it emerged last night. The Brussels analysis of the Prime Minister’s Mansion House speech on Friday, said it had been more about managing Tory backbenchers than proposing sensible solutions on trade. The paper, circulated to representatives of all 27 member states, appears to be a ‘lines to take’ document intended to coordinate a response to Mrs May’s speech. 
It claimed there had been “zero progress” in coming up with ideas for co-operation on customs arrangements. And it dismissed the PM’s model for a future trade arrangement “double cherry-picking: taking in selective elements of EU membership and of third country trade agreements”.

BBC News
Home Office officials have been asked to convince the European Parliament the system for EU citizens in the UK will not become a “bureaucratic nightmare”. The parliament’s Brexit chief Guy Verhofstadt said he had invited the officials to Brussels, after meetings with David Davis and other ministers. Mr Verhofstadt said he wanted to ensure the rights of UK citizens in the EU as well as EU citizens in the UK. The European Parliament has a veto on any eventual UK-EU Brexit deal. Mr Verhofstadt met Brexit Secretary David Davis in 9 Downing Street, before moving to 10 Downing Street for meetings with Cabinet Office minister David Lidington and Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

Northern Ireland

Express
IRELAND has outright rejected a possible solution to the Brexit border puzzle just hours after a proposal was put forward by Theresa May. The Republic of Ireland  said it would “definitely not” entertain a US-Canada style arrangement after Brexit, something the Prime Minister suggested this afternoon. Mrs May told MPs yesterday she was considering all manner of solutions to the problem – including adopting a similar situation as the one on the border between Canada and the USA. Her comment was jeered by Remain-supporting MPs, with Labour’s Jenny Chapman shouting out across the House of Commons the US-Canada border was protected by armed guards.

Independent
The EU’s proposals to solve the Brexit Irish border issue are not “fair” and actually backtrack on what was agreed with the UK in December, the DUP have told the bloc’s chief negotiator in a face-to-face meeting in Brussels. Senior figures from the Northern Irish unionist party including leader Arlene Foster met with Michel Barnier on Tuesday to raise their concerns about the Brexit process, following his meeting with Sinn Fein on Monday. Speaking at a news conference following the meeting Ms Foster said that she had told Mr Barnier that “the draft EU legal text was not a faithful or indeed fair legal interpretation of the joint report from December”. Though she described the meeting as “a good and very open meeting”, she said that “the current draft legal text has omissions in it, it also overreaches in other areas”.

Guardian
The leader of the Democratic Unionist party, Arlene Foster, has warned the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator that he had no right to produce his “utterly unacceptable” solution to avoiding a hard border on the island of Ireland. Michel Barnier had “overreached” in suggesting that Northern Ireland could effectively stay in the customs union and single market after Brexit, Foster told the commission official during a meeting in Brussels. The legal text unveiled last week did not fairly reflect a joint report agreed between the European commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, and Theresa May last December, it was claimed. The draft withdrawal treaty was instead said to amount to an unjustified attempt by Brussels to revise the terms of the Good Friday agreement, which has kept the peace since 1998.

Sun
ARLENE Foster has vowed to torpedo any Brexit deal that splits Northern Ireland from the rest of Britain. The furious DUP leader took aim at EU’s chief Brexit negotiator today and insisted his current proposals to avoid a hard border are “utterly unacceptable” and would be “economically catastrophic” for the province. In a ratcheting up of rhetoric she accused Brussels of violating the Good Friday Agreement by trying to impose a solution without Belfast’s consent. She told a press conference alongside Mr Barnier: “He has put forward an EU draft text that not only we find unacceptable, the British government finds unacceptable, the Labour party finds it unacceptable, so there will be a need to negotiate from that. 
That is his interpretation, we don’t think it’s a fair interpretation of the joint report from December and therefore work needs to be done on this now.” The head of the Democratic Unionist Party, whose 10 MPs prop up Mrs May’s Government, said her party could never support such a plan, which would effectively put a customs border in the Irish Sea.

Bolton

Guido
Pub quiz answer Henry Bolton has set up a new political party called 
“One Nation”, but Guido can reveal he has forgotten to register it with the Electoral Commission. A spokesman for the Electoral Commission says: “We are not currently in receipt of an application to register a party in the name of ‘One Nation’.” Bolton says of his new venture: “OneNation’s approach reflects Disraeli’s One Nation social conservatism and the Party’s structures and management mirror some of the changes that I sought to bring to UKIP when its leader. Policies are being drafted, a variety of campaigns and events are in the planning, membership will be open soon and more details will emerge over the coming days and weeks.”

Times
The ousted leader of Ukip has launched his own political party. Henry Bolton said yesterday that he had set up OneNation, a “100 per cent Leave” party, to try to unite the UK after a “highly divisive Brexit debate”, and to secure independence for Britain in all areas of law, government and public administration. Last month Ukip members backed a motion of no confidence in him at an emergency meeting, ending his stint at the helm after less than six months. Mr Bolton, 55, was criticised by senior party figures after he left his third wife and began a relationship with Jo Marney, 25, a model. She was accused of making racist remarks about Meghan Markle, Prince Harry’s fiancée.

Flu

Sun
A KILLER flu pandemic could be poised to sweep the globe “tomorrow”, killing 33 million people in its first 200 days. Conditions are ripe and the world is overdue a catastrophic shift in the flu virus, which could wipe out 300 million people, a leading flu expert has warned. Dr Jonathan Quick, chair of the Global Health Council, said the flu virus is “the most diabolical, hardest-to-control, and fastest-spreading potential viral killer known to humankind”. Describing what sounds like scenes from a horror film, Dr Quick warned in The Daily Mail of starvation, medicine supplies running low, energy systems crippling under the pressure and the collapse of the global economy. And what’s could cause such devastation, on a global scale? “The most likely culprit will be a new and unprecedentedly deadly mutation of the influenza virus. The conditions are right, it could happen tomorrow.”

Star
A DEADLY flu pandemic could wipe out 300 million people at any time, a scientist has warned. The world is due for a horrific flu virus to hit – with the most likely type being bird flu. This comes as the number of Brits killed from flu this winter was the highest in decades – over 200. Tragic boy, nine-year-old Coby Simons, is believed to have become the youngest to die from the latest terrifying outbreak. Dr Jonathan Quick, chair of the Global Health Council, said the flu virus is potentially destructive. He described it “the most diabolical, hardest-to-control, and fastest-spreading potential viral killer known to humankind”. Dr Quick warned that vital infrastructure including hospitals, and the global economy could all collapse if a flu pandemic struck. And he said it could happen as soon as tomorrow. One of the most deadly pandemics, the Spanish flu outbreak of 1918, claimed up to 100 million lives.

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