UK News

Rwanda vote not about his leadership says Rishi Sunak – as he dodges election question | Politics News

Rishi Sunak has dodged questions over whether he will call a general election if he loses a crunch vote on his Rwanda bill next week – which he insisted was not a vote of confidence in his leadership.

Mr Sunak convened the news conference just hours after Robert Jenrick quit his post as immigration minister over the Rwanda bill, which he said “doesn’t go far enough” and was a “triumph of hope over experience”.

The government published its long-awaited Rwanda bill just a day after Home Secretary James Cleverly visited Rwanda to sign a new treaty that was aimed at reviving the government’s troubled plan to send asylum seekers to the African country.

The bill compels UK judges to treat the east African nation as a safe country for asylum seekers after the Supreme Court ruled the scheme unlawful on the grounds people could be returned to their home countries and face harm, under a process known as refoulement.

The bill was designed to appease both wings of the Conservative Party – the right wing and the more moderate One Nation group – by allowing the UK to disapply aspects of the Human Rights Act but not the legislation in its entirety.

The Tory right, including Mr Jenrick and former home secretary Suella Braverman, wanted the bill to disregard the entire Human Rights Act with regard to asylum cases as well as include extra powers to dismiss challenges under the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR).

Mr Sunak made clear in his response to Mr Jenrick’s resignation later that Rwanda was at risk of walking away from the agreement if the bill ignored the European Court of Human Rights in its entirety.

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This notice was published: 2023-12-07 10:21:00

UK News

Suella Braverman urges Rishi Sunak to ‘change course’ over Rwanda bill following Jenrick resignation | Politics News

Suella Braverman has said she “very much hopes the prime minister changes course” with his efforts to tackle illegal migration after his plan to send asylum seekers to Rwanda was dealt a blow with the resignation of Robert Jenrick.

The former home secretary, who was sacked by Rishi Sunak last month, said she wanted the prime minister to “succeed in stopping the boats” but that he would have to “change course” and “take on observations” from critics to do that.

Ms Braverman, who warned in the Commons on Wednesday that the Conservatives faced “electoral oblivion in a matter of months” over the issue, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I want the prime minister to succeed in stopping the boats.

“He said he would do whatever it takes. I’m telling him there is a way to succeed in stopping the boats and fulfilling that promise.

“If we do it, if he does it as prime minister, he will be able to lead us into the next election telling the people we have succeeded on this very important pledge.”

Ms Braverman is the latest senior Conservative to pour scorn on the prime minister’s emergency Rwanda bill, published last night, which compels UK judges to treat the African nation as a safe country and gives ministers powers to disregard sections of the Human Rights Act.

Politics latest: Robert Jenrick quits over Rwanda bill as Sunak takes ‘gamble of his political life’

Last night, Mr Sunak suffered the resignation of Mr Jenrick over the bill, which he said “does not go far enough” and represented a “triumph of hope over experience”.

On Thursday morning Mr Jenrick was replaced with two individuals after the government carved the role into Minister for Illegal Migration and Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery.

Michael Tomlinson was appointed Minister for Illegal Migration while Tom Pursglove was moved into the post of Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery.

Robert Courts is now the new solicitor general after Mr Tomlinson was moved from the…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-07 08:53:00

UK News

Cash use grows for first time in 10 years as people pay closer attention to household budgets | UK News

Cash usage has grown for the first time in a decade as households look to balance their budgets amid the cost-of-living squeeze.

Across the UK, coins and banknotes accounted for nearly a fifth (19%) of transactions in 2022, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) annual Payments Survey.

Its report said: “This year’s Payments Survey shows an increase in cash usage for the first time in a decade, up from 15% (in 2021) to just under 19% of transactions (in 2022).

“Faced with rising living costs, cash was a useful tool for some people to manage their finances and track their day-to-day spending.”

The increase also reflects a natural return to cash following the contactless switch during the COVID pandemic, the report said.

The BRC said it is the first time since its reports started in 2013 that year-on-year cash usage has increased.

“However, the recovery in cash use in retail is fairly minimal, with only a relatively small increase as a share of total sales by value, up from 8.2% in 2021 to 11% in 2022,” the report stated.

“It appears that whilst a small percentage of people have returned to pre-pandemic habits, for a large portion of the population, the pandemic has had a lasting impact on how much we transact in cash.”

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Cost of living: Shoppers ‘overcharged’ for branded goods

One in four adults to use buy-now-pay-later schemes this Christmas

Card payments were used for 76% of transactions in 2022, with debit cards accounting for around four in five of these transactions.

Retailers spent £1.26bn on card processing fees in 2022, the BRC said.

Alternative payment methods, such as buy now, pay later, increased in popularity in 2022, from 2% of transactions in 2021 to 5% in 2022.

People have also been making smaller but more frequent payments as they manage their budgets.

The number of transactions increased from 17.2 billion in 2021 (47.2 million per day) to 19.6 billion in 2022 (53.7 million per day) and the average transaction…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-07 04:22:00

UK News

China warns of firm response after UK sanctions Chinese firms ‘supplying Russia’s war effort’ | UK News

China has accused Britain of violating international law after the UK announced new sanctions targeting “individuals and groups supporting and funding Putin’s war machine”.

China’s embassy said it firmly opposes the sanctions and has warned any action harming China’s interests “will be met with a firm response”.

In a statement, the embassy insisted Beijing had remained objective and fair on the war in Ukraine and urged the UK to “correct its mistakes and withdraw the sanctions on Chinese firms”.

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August: Putin lashes out at grain sanctions

Forty-six new sanctions were announced by the UK, and the list of targets includes businesses in China, as well as firms in Belarus, Serbia, Turkey, the UAE and Uzbekistan, which the government said “continue to support Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine”.

The UK’s sanctions targeted 31 people and entities it said were linked to the design and manufacture of drones and missile parts and the importing of electronic components.

Three Chinese entities, Asia Pacific Links Limited, Sinno Electronics Co., Limited, and Xinghua Co., Limited, were targeted for supplying sanctioned goods.

Read more from Sky News:
EU tariff U-turn to spare consumers extra bill
China backs coal plants despite carbon neutral promises

FILE PHOTO: A security surveillance camera overlooking a street is pictured next to a nearby fluttering flag of China in Beijing, China November 25, 2021. Picture taken November 25, 2021. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins/File Photo
Three Chinese entities were targeted for supplying sanctioned goods

Four UAE-based entities it said were involved in trading Russian oil were also affected, as well as others linked to the Wagner mercenary group.

A Belarusian defence organisation the UK said had manufactured military technology used by Minsk to support Russia’s war effort was also sanctioned.

“We will continue to ratchet up pressure on Putin and…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-06 14:01:00

UK News

UK citizens ‘will have fewer rights than migrants’ under new family visa rules, researchers say | Business News

New family visa rules could leave British citizens with a foreign partner facing greater restrictions on who they can live with than migrant workers, according to leading immigration researchers.

Under new rules announced by Home Secretary James Cleverly, the minimum income for British citizens who want to live with family members in the UK is up to £38,700, an increase of more than £20,000 from the previous figure of £18,000.

The change has been met with dismay and anger by many of those affected, who now face being unable to live with partners or children in the UK.

Politics live: Johnson’s evidence to UK pandemic inquiry as it happened

The new threshold is above the average salary earned by 70% of UK workers and has been characterised as allowing only the richest Britons to choose who they can marry.

The Migration Observatory at Oxford University said it is not clear why the new earnings threshold was chosen, and concluded the rules will leave migrant workers employed in the NHS or other public service roles with more rights than British employees doing the same job.

It said: “Counterintuitively, the package taken together means that, in some circumstances, British workers would face more restrictive rules on family than migrant workers in the same job.”

“For example, health professionals in the NHS who come to the UK on skilled work visas would be able to bring their non-UK citizen partners with them.

“A new restriction on dependants applies to care and senior workers, but not to other health jobs.

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Boris Johnson apology was ’empty’

“However, the majority of British nurses working in the NHS earn less than £38,700 per year and so would not have the same rights.”

Their analysis also concludes…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-06 15:59:00

UK News

Robert Jenrick resigns as immigration minister over government’s Rwanda plan – Home Office minister | Politics News

Robert Jenrick has resigned from his post as immigration minister over the government’s Rwanda plan, according to a Home Office minister.

Mr Jenrick was missing from the frontbench as Home Secretary James Cleverly gave a statement to the Commons on the government’s bid to rescue the deal to fly migrants who arrive illegally in the UK to Rwanda.

Reaction to Jenrick ‘resignation’: Follow live

Friends of Mr Jenrick have told Sky News he has resigned.

When asked by LBC if Mr Jenrick has resigned, Home Office minister Laura Farris said: “I understand that he has.”

His departure comes after emergency legislation aimed at reviving the stalled Rwanda asylum policy avoided the most hard-line option to leave the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

This is something many on the right of the Tory party have called for, including former home secretary Suella Braverman.

Earlier she warned the Tories face “electoral oblivion in a matter of months” if the legislation introduced is “destined to fail”.

Mr Jenrick is said to have pushed Mr Sunak for the toughest version of the legislation. But complying with those demands would have left Mr Sunak facing an outcry from his MPs from the more centrist One Nation faction.

Mr Sunak promised the emergency legislation after the Supreme Court ruled the plan to deport asylum seekers to Rwanda was unlawful. The draft bill, published on Wednesday, compels judges to treat the East African nation as a safe country and gives ministers powers to disregard sections of the Human Rights Act.

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This notice was published: 2023-12-06 17:09:00

UK News

<a href=''>Why today's political events could determine when the next election takes place | Sophy Ridge</a>

<a href=''>Why today's political events could determine when the next election takes place | Sophy Ridge</a>

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This notice was published: 2023-12-06 17:21:00

UK News

TUI shareholders may get vote on end to London listing | Business News

Europe’s biggest travel operator has revealed that it may seek to pull out of the London Stock Exchange amid continuing questions over the City’s post Brexit future.

TUI said that it could put the idea to a shareholder vote at its AGM next February.

The German-based company revealed that it could seek to upgrade its listing in Frankfurt, where most of its investors are based, following an approach by a number of shareholders on the matter.

Its current dual listing is the result of the 2007 tie-up with First Choice, which later resulted in a full merger.

TUI said it did not believe that cancelling its London listing, which would mean an exit from the FTSE 100, would have an adverse effect on its image among UK consumers.

While its current market value would see TUI enter the second tier on the Frankfurt exchange, the company said such a move would cut costs and help it meet European Union airline ownership and control requirements.

At least 75% of investors would need to support the motion for it to pass.

A London exit would represent a blow to London, with firms including CRH and plumbing equipment company Ferguson shifting their main listings to the United States.

Chip designer ARM floated in New York this year in a snub to the City.

Shares in TUI rose by more than 8% in both Frankfurt and London on Wednesday.

Financial analysts credited the company’s forecast for a 25% jump in operating profits in its new financial year.

TUI reported that a surge in demand for travel over its previous 12 months had helped the figure reach €977m – up from €409m in 2022.

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This notice was published: 2023-12-06 10:11:00

UK News

Asylum seekers jailed in Rwanda could be sent back to UK under deal, minister admits | Politics News

Rwanda will be able to send asylum seekers who have committed a crime back to the UK under the terms of a new treaty, a minister has admitted.

Policing minister Chris Philp said the conditions of the deal mean that those convicted of a serious offence – who had previously been sent from the UK to Rwanda under the government’s plan to tackle immigration – could be sent back to the UK after they have served their sentence.

Mr Philp told Sky News a provision in the treaty that “respects items in Rwandan law” means a “small number might be eligible to return to the UK”.

But he said those who could be returned to the UK “are all people that would have been in the UK anyway, because by definition they’ve come to the UK, then we’ve sent them to Rwanda”.

“So it will be people that, absent this deal, would have been here anyway.”

Yesterday, Home Secretary James Cleverly visited Kigali to sign the new treaty in a bid to revive the government’s stalled plan to send asylum seekers to Rwanda.

Politics latest: Johnson at COVID inquiry

Under the Rwanda plan, people who arrive in the UK by unauthorised means, including in many cases by small boat across the Channel, would be sent to the African country while their asylum claim is processed.

On arrival in Rwanda, people could be granted refugee status and allowed to stay, or apply for sanctuary in another “safe third country”.

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UK and Rwanda sign asylum treaty

The policy has formed a core part of the UK government’s strategy to tackle small boat crossings in the Channel in the hope it will act as a deterrent.

However, the government was forced to sign a new treaty after the Supreme Court ruled the policy was “unlawful” because there was a chance people sent to…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-06 08:11:00

UK News

NHS to put warnings about cancer symptoms on urinal mats in pubs and football grounds | UK News

The NHS is putting warnings about cancer symptoms on urinal mats in pubs, restaurants and football grounds to help increase early detection.

The health service in England is putting the message “Blood in your pee? Contact your GP practice” on mats as a way of urging men to seek help for the major symptom of bladder, kidney and prostate cancer.

Pubs, restaurants, shops, hotels and sports stadiums will be among the public places using the mats, and men’s workplaces will also be targeted.

The NHS has joined forces with P-Wave, a urinal products brand, to deliver the message.

Professor Peter Johnson, NHS England national clinical director for cancer, said: “Having blood in your pee – even just once – shouldn’t be ignored because it can be a sign of cancer, so it needs to be checked out by your GP team.

“Cancer survival is at an all-time high, and we’re seeing more cancers than ever before being picked up at an early stage – and this partnership with P-wave is just one of the many ways we are helping people to be aware of possible cancer symptoms.

“While this initiative is about helping men to spot the signs of cancer, everyone needs to be more aware.

“Please look for any changes that may be unusual for you and get checked out early. It could save your life.”

Other common symptoms of bladder, kidney and prostate cancer include peeing very often, sudden need to pee or a burning sensation when peeing.

People should also seek help if they have difficulty peeing, a lump or swelling in the back, under the ribs, in the neck, or pain at the side between the ribs and the hip.

A poll of 2,000 men by Censuswide to support the campaign found that nearly half (46%) thought blood in pee was not a symptom of cancer, while 39% would wait to see blood multiple times before seeing a GP.

More than half of men in England use a public urinal at least once a week, the poll found, while 71% said they would be more likely to contact their GP practice if they saw…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-05 16:49:00