weekly-news-3-sept

MICHEL BARNIER SUGGESTS UK MUST CHOOSE BETWEEN A CANADA-STYLE DEAL OR STAYING IN EU

Europe’s chief Brexit negotiator has dismissed Theresa May’s Chequers proposals and criticised her plan to avoid a hard border in Northern Ireland as “an invitation to fraud”. Michel Barnier said that the UK would not be granted any special economic relationship with the EU as it would unravel the single market and the entire “European project”. The remarks amount to an ultimatum that Britain must either choose a Canadian-style free trade agreement or remain in the customs union or common market, which would mean being tightly bound by European regulation. – The Times (£)

REJECTS CALL FOR A SECOND BREXIT REFERENDUM AS A ‘BETRAYAL OF TRUST’

Theresa May has said that “giving in” to calls for a second referendum on the final terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU would be “a gross betrayal of our democracy”.The Prime Minister dismissed calls from the People’s Vote, a cross-party group that includes several high-profile figures and MPs, for a second Brexit vote.Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, Mrs May said: “In the summer of 2016, millions came out to have their say. In many cases, for the first time in decades they trusted that their vote would count; that after years of feeling ignored by politics, their voices would be heard. “To ask the question all over again would be a gross betrayal of our democracy – and a betrayal of trust.” – Sky News

alexanderplatz_c_wolfgang_scholvienBRUSSELS COULD SCRAP DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME AS COUNTRIES WANT RELIEF FROM LONG WINTERS, SURVEY CLAIMS

Brussels looks set to scrap daylight saving time in a controversial move that could deeply divide the EU. Eurocrats are likely to do away with the annual clock change following a huge call from European voters for it to end. More than 80 per cent of respondents to the bloc’s largest ever survey said the tradition should now be axed, according to German media. More than 4.6million people responded to the massive consultation, which was instigated by MEPs. However, it was reported that around two-thirds of the respondents came from Germany, potentially vastly skewing the results. Countries including Finland, Lithuania, Sweden and Poland are pushing for daylight saving time to be dropped due to their long, dark winters. They point to evidence it can cause short-term sleeping disorders, reduced performance at work and even serious health problems. – The Sun

EUROPEAN HEALTH TOURISM SCAM RIPPING NHS OFF BY £200 MILLION STILL GOING EIGHT MONTHS AFTER EXPOSÉ

Cabinet ministers have broken a pledge to close a £200 million a year health tourism scam exposed by The Sun eight months ago. Today we reveal a fresh batch of fake European Health Insurance Cards (EHIC) we have obtained in the name of Cabinet ministers – including Theresa May. The Prime Minister herself vowed in January to close the unacceptable loophole that allows fraudsters to exploit British taxpayers by obtaining EHIC cards with false details. She and the then Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt ordered NHS bosses to put new checks in place after The Sun obtained 13 fake cards issued in the names of Cabinet ministers and even US President Donald Trump. Since 2006 UK taxpayers have paid out an estimated £200 million to European hospitals for treating people who have obtained an EHIC card with false details. – The Sun

boris-johnson

BORIS JOHNSON SAYS THERESA MAY’S CHEQUERS DEAL WILL ONLY LEAD TO VICTORY FOR BRUSSELS

Theresa May’s Chequers deal is a fix that will only lead to “victory” for the European Union while the UK is left “lying flat on the canvas”, Boris Johnson warns today. The former Foreign Secretary says that the Brexit negotiations are “about as pre-ordained as a bout between Giant Haystacks and Big Daddy” and will leave Britain paying “£40bn of taxpayers’ money for two-thirds of diddly squat”. Writing for The Telegraph, Mr Johnson accuses “some members” of the Government of deliberately using the Irish border issue to “stop a proper Brexit” and effectively keep Britain in the EU. – Telegraph (£)

BREXIT DEAL TO KEEP CLOSE SECURITY LINKS WITH THE EU IS ‘ALL BUT DONE’ — BUT EU STILL WANTS BILLIONS A YEAR FOR TRADE

A Brexit deal to keep close security links with the EU is all but done, negotiators declared. But after intensive talks, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab and EU chief Michel Barnier admitted there were still major “bones of contention” about the far trickier future trade deal. At the same time, France sent a strong hint to Theresa May that she will need to stump up billions of pounds in annual cash payments to win the broad trade deal she wants. Mr Raab and Mr Barnier negotiated for six hours after agreeing to intensify talks to win the race against time for a final deal by a new November hard deadline. – The Sun

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