Uk News & Politics

By Nick Mulvenney AL KHOR, Qatar - English hopes of a run deep into the World Cup took a bit of a bruising on Friday when a lively and high-pressing United States team reduced the youthful stars of their tournament opener to anonymity. Jude Bellingham, Bukayo Saka and Mason Mount dazzled in the 6-2 win over Iran on Monday and had England fans dreaming of a effervescent midfield that would take them through this World Cup and onto the next. They looked set to sustain that momentum when Bellingham and Saka combined well in a slick move down the right flank in the 10th minute on Friday that gave captain Harry Kane a good chance to open the scoring. A well-drilled American team had already showed that they were not going to give the England midfield the same space they enjoyed on Monday, however. Faced with the suffocating wall of blue shirts, England soon regressed to the lethargic, predictable passing game tha...
MADRID - Spain and the European Commision have sent Britain a proposal to keep the Gibraltar land border open as part of a definitive solution settling the post-Brexit status of the enclave, the Spanish foreign ministry said on Friday. Spain, Britain and the European Union agreed on Dec. 31, 2020, hours before Britain's full exit from the bloc, that Gibraltar would remain part of EU agreements such as the Schengen Area and Spain would police the port and the airport, pending a definitive solution. Spain's Foreign Affairs minister Jose Manuel Albares told Spanish local and regional authorities near Gibraltar on Friday both Spain and the European Commission had sent Britain "a proposal to make the area a zone of shared prosperity". The British ambassador in Madrid Hugh Elliott said on Thursday in an interview on Gibraltar TV GBC he was confident a deal can be reached this year. The Spanish-EU proposal includes removing the fe...
Sam Bright dissects the multi-billion-pound affair that saw lucrative public contracts awarded to Conservative donors
LONDON - The scope of an investigation into the behaviour of British Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab has been widened to include a third formal complaint, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's spokeswoman said on Friday. "I can confirm that the Prime Minister has now asked the investigator to add a further formal complaint relating to conduct at the Department for Exiting the European Union and to establish the facts in line with the existing terms of reference," the spokeswoman said. (Reporting by Alistair Smout; editing by William James)...
As football's record on LGBTIQ rights goes under the spotlight during the World Cup, Sian Norris reports on the Government's trading agreements with anti-LGBTIQ regimes
LONDON - Britain and Singapore have agreed a memorandum of understanding on financial technology to support continued growth, investment, and technological innovation in the sector, the UK's Treasury department said on Friday. (Reporting by William James, writing by Muvija M)...
We can’t seriously address the climate emergency until we admit that some of our hopes have died, writes Rupert Read
John Mitchinson explores how our brains reflect our lives not our genitals John Gray’s Men are from Mars, Women are From Venus was the highest-selling non-fiction title of the 1990s.  With sales of over 15 million copies across 40 languages, it created its own publishing ecosystem: Why Men Don’t Listen and Women Can’t Read Maps; […]
LONDON - British Health Secretary Steve Barclay said on Friday he was open to talks with nurses union RCN but highlighted the merits of a pay rise that was set out by the government in July. Responding to news that nurses are set to carry out their biggest ever strike action, Barclay emphasised that a previously announced pay rise of at least 1,400 pounds ($1,695.26) will mean a newly qualified nurse will typically earn over 31,000 pounds a year. "The NHS (National Health Service) has tried and tested plans in place to minimise disruption and ensure emergency services continue to operate but inevitably strike action will have an impact on services," he said on Twitter. ($1 = 0.8258 pounds) (Reporting by Muvija M; editing by William James)...
- British energy regulator Ofgem has launched new reform proposals to better protect consumers and to ensure energy suppliers are more resilient to market shocks, it said on Friday, a day after setting its latest price cap amid soaring energy bills. The watchdog's proposals include introducing capital adequacy requirements, with Ofgem seeking feedback on the proposals it hopes to publish in Spring 2023. (Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza)...
- Fast bowler Jofra Archer said he was "fully back" from his long injury lay-off after marking his return to an England shirt by bowling for the Lions in a three-day match against the test side in the United Arab Emirates. Archer, who has not played international cricket since March last year, was ruled out for the season in May due to a stress fracture in his back. Before that he had been sidelined by an elbow injury which required a second round of surgery in December 2021. Archer bowled nine overs on Wednesday, the opening day of the match, and was 39 not out at the end of the second day's play. "Yesterday was a really, really big day," the 27-year-old told reporters on Thursday. "A small day but still a big day. "I will say I'm fully back." Archer said his goal was to get back into the test side but would not rush things. "Obviously to get back to the first team is my number o...
By Tim Kelly and Kaori Kaneko TOKYO - Japan's ruling party is discussing whether to ease military equipment export rules, in part because without a change Britain would not be able to sell any jet fighters it builds with Japan, former defence minister Itsunori Onodera said. Japan and Britain hope to agree by the end of the year to merge their next-generation Tempest and F-X fighter programmes, sources said in July. Those talks, aimed at a joint project to field a plane in the mid-2030s, remain on track, according to four other people familiar with the discussions. "Japan could not oppose exports and neither could we insist that Japanese components be removed, so we are discussing what we can do about that," said Onodera, chairman of the Liberal Democratic Party's Research Commission on National Security. Japan ended a ban on military exports in 2014 in a bid to promote overseas sales. It hoped the change would allow its arme...
LONDON - British foreign minister James Cleverly will pledge millions of pounds in further support for Kyiv during a visit to Ukraine to ensure the country has the practical help it needs through the winter, his office said. Cleverly, who is set to meet President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on the trip, also condemned Russia for its "brutal attacks" on civilians, hospitals and energy infrastructure. A statement from his office issued early on Friday said Cleverly had travelled to Ukraine, which this week suffered the most devastating Russian air strikes on its energy infrastructure so far in the months-long war. "The UK stands shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine," said Cleverly, as he set out 3 million pounds to help rebuild vital infrastructure and committed another 5 million for a Ukraine-led initiative to ship grain to countries at risk of famine. "I've seen here first-hand how the UK's efforts a...
By Natalie Thomas and Alistair Smout GOSPORT, England/LONDON - Chukwudubem Ifeajuna, a nurse in the south of England, loves his job, but next month will walk out for two days as part of British nurses' biggest ever strike action, which he says is necessary for staff and patient welfare alike. The industrial action on Dec. 15 and Dec. 20 is unprecedented in the British nursing union's 106-year history, and comes as the state-run National Health Service (NHS) braces for one of its toughest winters ever. Ifeajuna has seen members of his team leave to work in supermarkets, where there is less stress and better pay, while he has had to cut back on spending. "I have a few staff who are using food banks at the moment. I've had to cut down on a lot of things with the kids which I can't afford to provide for them because of the high cost of living. So it's really really tough, for everyone, not just myself," he told . "...
LONDON - Thousands of British nurses will go on strike on Dec. 15 and 20 for more pay, their union said on Friday, adding to a winter of industrial action and putting further pressure on the state-run health system. The strikes are the first of possibly several walkouts by National Health Service (NHS) nurses, which come after the government refused to meet demands for pay rises of 5% above inflation. "Nursing staff have had enough of being taken for granted, enough of low pay and unsafe staffing levels, enough of not being able to give our patients the care they deserve," Royal College of Nursing (RCN) General Secretary Pat Cullen said. Cullen said the government had declined formal negotiations in the two weeks since the RCN announced nurses would go on strike for the first time in the union's 106-year history. British Health Secretary Steve Barclay said the nurses' demands would amount to a 19.2% pay rise costing 10 billi...
LONDON - Bank of England policymaker Catherine Mann said on Thursday that she expected inflation would be at the upper end of the range of forecasts published by the central bank earlier this month. Mann, who has voted for a faster pace of rate increases than most Monetary Policy Committee members this year, said that both wages and underlying prices were rising too fast at present for inflation to return to its 2% target, though not to the extent that there was a wage-price spiral. BoE forecasts on Nov. 3 showed that under the median path for inflation in the central bank's model, inflation in two years' time should be below its 2% target. But the BoE's 'fan chart' - which puts error bands around these inflation forecasts - showed a 28% chance that inflation would still be above 3% at that point. "I can tell you that I am in the upper part of that fan, by a lot," Mann said in a presentation at a central banking conference...
LONDON - Camilla, the wife of Britain's King Charles, personally delivered dozens of Paddington Bear toys to a children's charity on Thursday, giving a new home to the toys which had been left by well-wishers as a tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth. Mourners placed more than 1,000 Paddingtons and other teddy bears among the mass of floral tributes and messages which were left outside palaces and royal parks in London and Windsor in the days of mourning following Elizabeth's death in September. The stuffed bears have been professionally cleaned, and on Friday Camilla, the queen consort, visited a Barnardo's Nursery in east London for a 'teddy bears picnic' featuring marmalade sandwiches, and to hand out some of the Paddingtons to vulnerable young children there. She was joined by two of the cast from the recent Paddington films, Hugh Bonneville and Madeleine Harris, who played Mr Brown and Judy Brown in the movie adaptations of the childr...
- Liverpool sporting director Julian Ward has decided to leave the Premier League club at the end of the season, a year after he replaced Michael Edwards in the role, media reported on Thursday. Liverpool were said to be surprised and disappointed and would decide whether to continue with the sporting director model introduced in 2016. Manager Juergen Klopp will play a key role in the decision after extending his contract last April to 2026, assuring stability. The Liverpool Echo said Ward, who was previously at Manchester City, had no plans of immediately joining another club. Ward's decision to leave comes as Liverpool's U.S. owners Fenway Sports Group are considering a possible sale of the club. Liverpool were league champions in 2019-20 and have reached the Champions League final three times under Klopp, winning the title in 2019. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing b...
LONDON - Britain on Thursday instructed government departments to stop installing security cameras made by companies subject to Chinese security laws, disconnect such devices from core computer networks and to consider removing them altogether. The order, set out in a written statement to parliament by cabinet office minister Oliver Dowden, said the decision had been taken following a review of "current and future possible security risks associated with the installation of visual surveillance systems on the government estate". "The review has concluded that, in light of the threat to the UK and the increasing capability and connectivity of these systems, additional controls are required," Dowden said. "Departments have therefore been instructed to cease deployment of such equipment onto sensitive sites, where it is produced by companies subject to the National Intelligence Law of the People’s Republic of China. "Since securi...
Barrister Gareth Roberts sets out the options available to Nicola Sturgeon following the UK Supreme Court's decision that she cannot hold a second independence referendum without Westminster's approval