Brexit

The Sun reports on the latest Brexit negotiations.

DOWNING Street is under internal pressure to make big concessions to the EU to get a Brexit deal, it has emerged.
However, pro-Brexit ministers fear giving too much away to Brussels.
One warned that too many concessions could see “the bottom fall out of the bucket” and the Government risking collapse.
Ministers urged Theresa May to appoint a “no deal” Secretary of State to show the EU we are prepared to go it alone.
Yet Brussels officials have briefed that they have little faith in Mrs May’s ability to get MPs to approve a final deal. This would heighten the need to plan for a no-agreement scenario.

And the Times claims our Brexit minister has ‘lost control’.

David Davis has been outflanked by Whitehall and has lost direct political control over the officials negotiating Brexit, it was claimed yesterday.
The Brexit secretary last month asked for Oliver Robbins to be moved from his job as permanent secretary in the Department for Exiting the European Union, which he combined with his role as the prime minister’s chief Europe adviser.
His request followed disagreements with Mr Robbins about the government’s approach to the talks and the decision to publish detailed position papers on its strategy.
At the time, the Brexit department said that it remained responsible for the UK’s overall negotiating strategy. They said that Mr Robbins would have a “small team” of staff to support him.

The Express claims Davis will not agree a ‘divorce bill’ payment until trade talks start.

BRITAIN’S negotiators will refuse to reveal how much they are willing to pay to settle the Brexit divorce bill when they meet their EU counterparts next week, prompting fears the negotiating deadlock has not been broken.
David Davis and his team will keep their cards close to their chest by not disclosing which financial “commitments” the UK will honour, according to senior Whitehall sources.
The UK’s new hardline stance was agreed after EU negotiators made it clear that they have no plans to discuss a transitional deal and trade talks at this month’s October European Council summit, despite Mrs May’s generous offer to pay €20billion during a transitional period.
The source told the Telegraph: “There won’t be any political movement from the British side on the bill until the EU broadens its package to discuss transition and the future relationship”, but said Britain would still look to hold “technical talks” on the bill.”

EU

Meanwhile, Juncker is getting out of his pram again, says the Express.

JEAN-CLAUDE Juncker today fired a broadside at Theresa May’s plans for a new ‘Global Britain’ by insisting the EU27 will remain a trading superpower even after Brexit.
The EU Commission chief said the bloc will still be the globe’s second biggest economy, behind the US, even once its second largest powerhouse has gone independent.
He made the remarks at a meeting with the Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, at which the pair agreed to kickstart work on a new trade deal “once the conditions are right”. 

The Telegraph is one of the media reporting talks between the EU and Jeremy Corbyn.

EU negotiators have “significantly” stepped up back-room talks with Labour because they are increasingly concerned Theresa May’s government  will collapse before Brexit is complete.
Brussels is seeking assurances from Jeremy Corbyn that he will honour agreements reached with the Conservatives if he comes to power.
Sources have told The Telegraph there has been “a significant change in tone” from Brussels towards Labour since the general election and meetings since then have been at a higher level and more frequent.
Both Mr Corbyn and Sir Keir Starmer, the shadow Brexit secretary, have held meetings with the European Union’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier, the First Vice President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans and others, including members of the Brexit negotiating teams.

The Sun claims the Tory government could ‘collapse’.

EU chiefs have stepped up Brexit talks with Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party amid fears Theresa May’s government will collapse before March 2019, it emerged last night.
Brussels has sought reassurances from Mr Corbyn that Labour would stick to the agreements already made by the Tory government if it got into power before Britain leaves.
Sources told the Daily Telegraph that there has been “a significant change in tone” from the EU since the   General Election.
Meetings have been held at a higher level between the two parties – and more frequently.

And Sky News also reports the talks.

EU negotiators have reportedly stepped up backroom Brexit talks with Labour amid concerns over Theresa May’s future.
The Prime Minister has faced repeated calls to resign since losing the Conservative majority in June, with fresh claims this week that more than 
30 Tory MPs want her to stand down.
Uncertainty over Mrs May’s premiership has seen EU negotiators “significantly” increase the amount of talks held with Labour since the election, according to The Daily Telegraph.
The discussions have marked “a significant change in tone” towards Labour, and Brussels is seeking assurances from Jeremy Corbyn that he would honour agreements made with the Conservatives if he comes to power, the paper added.

But Breitbart claims businesses could open trade talks.

Rumours are swirling that EU leaders may overrule the obstructionist stance of the European Commission and European Parliament on opening trade talks with the United Kingdom at their next Council meeting.
According to the 
Daily Express, a “top official” has told the AFP that there is an “outside chance” member-state leaders may choose to disagree with Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker, chief negotiator Michel Barnier, and parliamentary Brexit representative Guy Verhofstadt that Britain has yet to make “sufficient progress” on various demands — fearful that waiting too long to begin trade talks could mean no agreement is in place in time for Brexit.
Concerns are particularly acute in Germany, which runs a huge trade surplus with the United Kingdom. The Federation of German Industries already warning members to prepare for a “very hard Brexit” given the lack of progress.

And the Express says Barnier could be ‘overruled’.

EUROPEAN nations could choose to overrule their chief negotiator Michel Barnier and trigger trade talks with Britain next month, a senior EU diplomat said today.
A top official told the AFP there was an outside chance that EU leaders may decide to make “history” and agree sufficient progress has been achieved in the Brexit negotiations.
Such a move would be a massive shock, given the repeated insistence by a wide range of senior EU figures that there is still more work to do before the second phase can begin.
Eurocrats are also becoming increasingly concerned by the instability of Theresa May and have voiced fears that “hardline” Boris Johnson could take her place, scuppering any ground made so far.  

And Reuters claims the EU’s business are getting ready for a ‘no deal’.

As in-fighting consumes the British government, Europeans have stepped up quiet preparations for a possible collapse of Brexit talks that could see Britain crash out of the EU without a deal 18 months from now.
Prime Minister Theresa May’s EU counterparts still see the “no-deal scenario” she threatened them with as most unlikely, as they think it would hurt Britain much more than the continent.
But after her faltering party conference this week and ahead of important meetings in Brussels over the next fortnight, diplomats and officials there and in big member states said they have been putting renewed focus on contingency planning for a legal limbo in March 2019 and urging businesses to do the same.

Theresa May

The Conservative Party is in trouble, says the Telegraph.

A Cabinet minister encouraged a plot by up to 30 Tory MPs to oust Theresa May by the end of the year, a former Conservative Party chairman has claimed.
Grant Shapps was named by Government whips as the leader of a group that wants to pressure the Prime Minister into resigning after her disastrous election performance.
Tory MPs today lined up to criticise Mr Shapps, telling him that he should “shut up” and saying that his “botched” coup was doomed to failure.
However Mr Shapps accused Tory MPs of “burying their heads in the sand” and told The Telegraph that the revolt over Mrs May’s leadership “will not go away”.
He said that the group had been backed in the month after the General Election by a Cabinet minister who wants the Prime Minister to step aside. 

The Mirror has a similar story.

The former Chairman of the Conservative Party has admitted to masterminding a plot to oust Theresa May.
Ex-minister Grant Shapps , who outed himself as the ringleader of the backroom rebellion, claims around 30 Tory MPs have privately told him they would back a move to force Mrs May to step down and call a leadership election.
And the gang of 30 reportedly includes five former Cabinet ministers.
It’s short of the 48 needed to force a leadership election.
“They are Remainers, they are  Brexiteers,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

The Times claims the government is in a mess.

Theresa May presides over a government in a “monumental mess” and could yet be forced out at the end of the year, senior colleagues said yesterday.
The prime minister appears to have seen off the immediate threat of a coup attempt led by Grant Shapps, a former party chairman.
However, relations at the top of government remain fractious. Senior allies of Mrs May suggested that Mr Shapps was working on behalf of Boris Johnson. The foreign secretary is understood to have reacted angrily to the claim, which he completely rejects and regards as a smear.
There were further tensions as David Davis, the Brexit secretary, faced accusations that he has been “outmanoeuvred” by Whitehall.

The Independent calls the chief plotter ‘divisive’.

The MP leading the plot to oust  Theresa May as Prime Minister has a colourful past making him an extremely divisive figure among Conservatives. One Tory colleague, Michael Fabricant, said he would not “buy a used car” from Grant Shapps.
Mr Shapps has emerged from the shadows after keeping a low profile for a few years, but once made headlines for the wrong reasons. The former Tory Party Chairman was forced to stand down from a ministerial post following allegations of bullying and was found to have lied when he claimed to have never taken a second job.
He made front page news when it emerged he had a dual identity. Before becoming an MP, Mr Shapps founded HowToCorp, a web marketing firm offering books on how to get “stinking rich” very quickly using the pseudonym Michael Green.

And the Sun claims the rebels are out to destroy Brexit.

FURIOUS Tory MPs today accused plotting rebels of conspiring to “destroy Brexit” with their attempt to overthrow Theresa May.
After pro-Remain ex-minister Grant Shapps was outed as the leader of the would-be coup last night, his colleagues quickly turned on him.
Several MPs pointed out that all those who have openly opposed Mrs May  were pro-EU – while others warned the chaos could threaten the Brexit process.
Leading backbencher Nadine Dorries said today: “The plot is by Remain MPs to topple the PM, destroy Boris and put a Remain leader in place to delay and possibly destroy Brexit. It won’t work.”

Breitbart reports that a party donor has joined the rebellion.

A major Conservative Party donor is calling on the prime minister to step down as a former party chairman reveals himself as the leader of a rebellious group of MPs advocating for a new leader.
Charlie Mullins, the founder of Pimlico Plumbers, who has donated £50,000 to the Tories, said Theresa May is being undermined and “bullied” by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. He told 
The Guardian: “She has got to go for her own sake. It is getting embarrassing. If this was a boxing match, the fight would have been stopped.
“She has been put in a position where she is being bullied, she is being intimidated, they are making her life hell. These are Conservative people who are destroying this woman and it needs to stop.”

And the Guardian claims Mrs May should sack her foreign secretary.

Theresa May must sack Boris Johnson and shake up her cabinet if she is to reassert her authority and silence talk of a leadership plot in the wake of this week’s calamitous party conference, Conservative MPs will tell her.
Few backbenchers were willing to give their public backing on Friday to Grant Shapps, the former party chairman who emerged as the prime mover behind a bid to gather enough MPs to convince the prime minister to step down.
But many remain furious about the foreign secretary’s recent behaviour and want May to show that she is willing to exert discipline. Younger backbenchers are also anxious to see a new generation of talent brought into government.
The issue is set to be raised at next Wednesday’s meeting of the executive of the party’s powerful 1922 Committee.

Migration

A new launch point on the Continent for migrants hoping to get to the UK has been identified says the Times.

Britain is to fund tighter security at Ouistreham port in Normandy after an influx of migrants fuelled concern that it could become a second Calais.
The French Interior Ministry said the British authorities had been asked to contribute to the cost of improved security at the small Channel port and added that “an agreement is in the process of being concluded”.
Officials refused to divulge the bill for British taxpayers but said the aim was to “prevent intrusions [into the port] in order to dissuade the migrants from attempting a clandestine journey to the UK”.
Britain has already spent more than €100 million on security in Calais over the past three years, according to the French authorities.

And ITV News claims migrants heading to Calais all want to get to the UK.

The majority of migrants in Calais  head to the French port city hoping to make it across the Channel to Britain, according to a new survey.
The survey by Auberge des Migrants, found 92.5 % of Calais migrants want to apply for asylum in the UK.
Of those who seek to come to Britain, 62% want to come because they have relatives or friends in the UK.
The charity found 15% want to come to Britain to study while a further 10% seek refuge in the UK as they believe the Dublin regulation does not apply, although UK is one of the 32 ‘Dublin states’.

Defence cuts

The Times reports the resignation of a top sailor worried about cuts to the Royal Navy.

A senior Royal Navy officer has decided to resign as his service considers axing two beach-assaulting warships and 1,000 Royal Marines to save money.
Rear-Admiral Alex Burton, commander of UK maritime forces, who would lead a naval task group into war, handed in his notice three or four weeks ago, according to two defence sources. A third source confirmed that he was quitting. The sources did not give a reason and a spokesman for the navy said it was “a private matter for the individual”.
Rear-Admiral Burton remarked on his public Twitter feed over the summer about the importance of HMS Bulwark and HMS Albion, the landing assault ships that could go as part of a defence review.

But the Mail claims he was ‘slapped down’.

A senior Royal Navy officer was today slapped down after he publicly waded into a row about defence cuts.
Rear Admiral Alex Burton, commander of UK maritime forces, took to Twitter to vent his frustration about possible plans to take two of the Navy’s specialist landing ships out of service.
He also complained about cuts to the Royal Marines before deleting the post within minutes.
On Thursday it emerged that the Ministry of Defence is considering axing amphibious assault ships HMS Albion and HMS Bulwark as part of cost-cutting measures.

North Korea

The problems of North Korea are not going away, says the Sun.

NORTH Korea is preparing to test a long-range missile which it believes can reach the west coast of the United States, it’s claimed.
An influential Russian politician Anton Morozov made the warning after visiting Pyongyang this week, RIA news agency reports.
Mr Morozov said: “They are preparing for new tests of a long-range missile.
“They even gave us mathematical calculations that they believe prove that their missile can hit the west coast of the United States.
“As far as we understand, they intend to launch one more long-range missile in the near future.
“And in general, their mood is rather belligerent.”

Scotland

The Scottish first minister could be about to be thwarted in her push for another independence referendum says the Times.

Nicola Sturgeon may be on course to lose her pro-independence majority in the Scottish parliament.
A poll by YouGov for The Times still shows that the SNP is likely to win the next Scottish election, but suggests that the first minister would have to try to run a minority government with even fewer MSPs than she does now.
Crucially, the poll reveals that the Greens, who support independence, are also likely to lose seats. The combined effect of SNP and Green losses would leave Ms Sturgeon unable to call a second referendum, which she has said she wants to do after the Brexit outcome becomes clear.

Grenfell

The aftermath of the terrible tower block fire is still reverberating, reports the Guardian.

Councils have said the government is failing to release funds to improve the fire safety of dozens of tower blocks following the Grenfell Tower disaster despite promising that a lack of financial resources should not stand in the way of essential works.
Ministers have said building owners are responsible for funding safety measures, but town hall leaders complain that they are “washing their hands of their responsibilities” and are being “dismissive”, four months after the blaze at the Kensington tower block, which claimed about 80 lives.
The government has said it will consider help “where works are essential”, but has so far resisted bids for support to retrofit sprinklers in towers despite the London fire brigade (LFB) saying this must happen.

Meteor shower

And for a natural fireworks display over the weekend, look up, says the Sun.

KEEP your eyes on the sky this weekend because you could be in for a treat.
The Draconid meteor shower is set to hit its peak this weekend, offering stargazers the opportunity to see dozens of shooting stars blazing across the sky.
This stunning celestial display, which is also known as the Giacobinids, takes place every year and is one of the two meteor showers to light up the skies in October.
The streaks spawn from the comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner, which orbits around the Sun for six-and-a-half years.
Over the weekend, the Earth will pass through a swarm of debris left in the comet’s wake, leading to meteors which appear as bright shooting stars when they enter the atmosphere and burn up.
According to the Royal Observatory astronomer Affelia Wibisono, the shower is expected to peak on Sunday.
She added: “The best time to see them is in the early evening on that day, but they are visible all through the night, weather depending of course.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email