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Boris Johnson: Pressure mounts on PM to explain flat refit


Liz Truss insists Boris Johnson ‘met the prices of the refurbishment of the flat’

A minister has dodged questions on whether or not Boris Johnson obtained a mortgage from a Tory donor to pay for the refurbishment of his Downing Street flat.

Liz Truss, the worldwide commerce secretary, mentioned the prime minister had personally met the prices of the work and she or he dismissed claims by his former high aide Dominic Cummings as “tittle tattle”.

The questions got here after Mr Cummings accused his former boss of plotting an “unethical, silly, presumably unlawful” plan to get Tory donors to secretly fund the lavish work carried out on his No 10 residence.

Labour mentioned that Mr Johnson wanted to explain how he obtained the cash within the first place to pay for the work overseen by his fiancee Carrie Symonds. The shadow communities secretary, Steve Reed, mentioned the federal government should publish any correspondence relating to funds or donations across the refurbishment.

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MI6 displays international locations’ local weather pledges

The Secret Intelligence Service, in any other case referred to as MI6, is enterprise work to monitor international locations stick to their local weather pledges, the pinnacle of the company has mentioned.

Richard Moore, who took cost in October, mentioned MI6 had to play a task in relation to the “local weather emergency”, describing it as “the foremost worldwide overseas coverage agenda merchandise” for the UK.

In an interview with Times Radio, Mr Moore, identified in Whitehall as C, mentioned: “My service’s job I assume is to assist with the managing of the risk facet and ensuring that we defend and shield our pursuits.

“And it’s, in the event you like, a form of assurance, placing an assurance wrapper across the constructive facet of it.

“Climate change is an effective instance, the place folks enroll to commitments on local weather change and it’s maybe our job to make it possible for when folks enroll to them, that truly what they’re actually doing displays what they’ve signed up to.”

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 14:23


MPs out campaigning – and voting – this weekend

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 14:10


What are the completely different strands to the cronyism scandal engulfing No 10?

From Greensill to Dyson, Downing Street and the federal government normally has been engulfed by allegations of cronyism in current weeks.

But there are lots of completely different strands to the story, a few of which solely tangentially overlap.

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 13:56


Government devolution unit ‘a chaos of stroll outs and throw outs’

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 13:30


Scottish independence wouldn’t imply a tough border, says Sturgeon

Nicola Sturgeon has insisted Scottish independence wouldn’t imply a tough border with England.

Asked in regards to the potential for disruption within the occasion of Scotland breaking away from the UK, as has been seen on the island of Ireland after Brexit, the primary minister instructed the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show: “We will put in place preparations and we’ll negotiate these preparations with the UK that implies that companies don’t in a sensible sense, endure from any of that.

“Of course earlier than we get to some extent the place we’re asking folks to select whether or not or not they need Scotland to turn out to be unbiased, which is the selection of the Scottish folks, we’ll set out to the entire implications of independence, the entire benefits of independence, and the entire sensible points that folks have to think about so that folks make an knowledgeable alternative.

“But the distinction between that and what we’re struggling proper now in Scotland is that Brexit has occurred to us.”

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 13:00


Expanding London’s ultra-low emission zone important to enhance air high quality, says mayor

London mayor Sadiq Khan’s has mentioned plans to increase the ultra-low emission zone are important to bettering the capital’s air high quality at a time when increasingly individuals are driving as lockdowns ease.

Around a 3rd of automotive journeys in London are below 2km – a distance that for many could possibly be simply achieved by bicycle or on foot.

Responding to assaults from his Tory rival, who has vowed to rip up schemes aimed toward making environmentally pleasant technique of transport simpler and safer within the capital, Mr Khan instructed The Sunday Times: “It’s the poorest Londoners, who’re least seemingly to personal vehicles, who are suffering the worst penalties of bad-quality of air.

“It’s youngsters dwelling within the poorest elements of London who could have stunted lungs for ever due to the bad-quality air, and adults who don’t personal vehicles who’ve coronary heart circumstances and most cancers due to poor-quality air.

“I introduced my plans in 2017 to give folks time to transition away from the previous non-compliant automobiles in the event that they don’t need to stroll, cycle or use public transport.”

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 12:30


Government to buy tens of millions extra vaccine doses

The authorities is shut to signing a deal for round 40 million extra Pfizer vaccines in time for a booster shot marketing campaign within the autumn, in accordance to a report.

The Sunday Times mentioned ministers hoped to double the UK’s authentic order of 40 million doses and that they might be used on youthful recipients as an alternative of the AstraZeneca jab.

As of Saturday, 33.5 million folks within the UK had obtained at the very least one dose, and simply over 12 million had been given each doses – a complete of 45.5 million vaccines administered since December.

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 12:02


Cummings ‘getting ready file to blame PM for Covid deaths’

According to The Sunday Times, the PM’s former adviser, Dominic Cummings, is getting ready a file of proof which could possibly be utilized in a forthcoming session earlier than MPs to blame him for tens of 1000’s of deaths through the pandemic.

“He was pushing the prime minister arduous to lock down sooner within the autumn and he has plenty of proof that reveals that his determination to delay led to devastating penalties,” an ally instructed the paper.

The UK’s second lockdown started at 00.01 on Thursday 5 November and completed at 00.01 on Wednesday 2 December and noticed pubs, eating places and non-essential retailers shut together with leisure and leisure venues – together with gyms – in addition to hairdressers and wonder salons.

Labour chief Sir Keir Starmer mentioned on the time it was a choice the federal government “ought to have taken weeks” earlier.

Because of the delay “the lockdown will probably be longer, it’ll be more durable and there’s a human price which will probably be very, very actual,” he mentioned in October.

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 11:48


‘You don’t get very far lobbying the Bank of England,’ says former governor

Mark Carney has mentioned efforts to foyer the Bank of England “wouldn’t get very far” when requested if politicians had his personal phone quantity and if he was lobbied by them when he was governor from 2013 to 2020.

He instructed BBC One’s Andrew Marr Show: “Did some former (politicians) – I imagine a few of them would have.

“I’m attempting to suppose off the highest of my head. Lobbies, no is the brief reply by way of you don’t get very far lobbying the Bank of England.

“The Bank of England is unbiased, it’s very clear what our duties are and we take these very severely, and I believe the document speaks for itself.” 

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 11:31


Sturgeon to mannequin financial influence of Scottish independence in run up to referendum

Nicola Sturgeon has mentioned the SNP authorities has not but modelled the financial influence of Scottish indepedence, saying that can solely occur within the interval instantly earlier than a referendum to guarantee the information is up to date.

The Scottish first minister instructed Andrew Marr “we’ll do this once we get to the purpose the place we ask folks to select independence”.

Scottish Labour chief Anas Sarwar, showing on Sky News, mentioned it was a “pandemic election, not a standard election” and that recovering from Covid was the principle precedence over independence.

He mentioned: “Of course Scotland has the suitable to select its personal future … however our manifesto makes clear we don’t help independence, we don’t help a referendum.

“We imagine the following parliament ought to be targeted totally on delivering a nationwide restoration and constructing our nation again collectively.

“Not going again to these previous arguments, not going again to the previous divisions, and that may be a case solely Labour is making in a severe means.”

Tom Batchelor25 April 2021 11:06