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No-deal Brexit during election ‘anti-democratic’ – Corbyn
Such is the uncertainty at Westminster that a little over a fortnight after a new prime minister took office, the leader of the opposition is demanding the UK’s top civil servant intervene in response to speculation over a no-deal Brexit during a hypothetical general election period. Jeremy Corbyn has written to Cabinet Secretary Sir Mark Sedwill over concerns PM Boris Johnson could call an election, then allow the UK to leave the EU on 31 October while Parliament is dissolved and there are no MPs around trying to prevent a no-deal scenario. This, the Labour leader argues, would be an “anti-democratic abuse of power”.
Mr Corbyn wants assurances that Sir Mark would advise ministers to observe “purdah” guidance, which states that policy decisions on which a new government might “take a different view” should be postponed until after the election. In other words, that they should seek another extension to the Brexit process. As MPs have, of course, already voted to leave the EU, the default is that Brexit will happen on 31 October. It raises questions about the timing of any bid to force an election by tabling a vote of no confidence in the prime minister, which Mr Corbyn has said his party will do at an “appropriate” time after the Commons returns from its summer recess on 5 September.
Find out the rules on confidence votes in our quick guide, and then check out our assessment of how else ministers and MPs might clash over no deal.
Asthma deaths ‘highest in a decade’
Could a lack of basic care, such as inhaler checks, be causing more people to die “needlessly” from asthma attacks? That’s what the charity Asthma UK claims as analysis shows more than 1,400 adults and children in England and Wales died from asthma attacks in 2018 – the highest number for more than a decade. “How many more lives have to be cut short before people realise how serious asthma can be?” asks Nicki Davis, 49, from Cambridgeshire, who watched her eight-year-old son die after an attack.
Premier League clubs ‘should pay living wage’
Negotiations done, medicals complete, forms submitted and players unveiled… after another frenetic transfer deadline day for England’s top clubs, the collective bill for the annual summer frenzy is in at a staggering £1.41bn. That’s just shy of the record. Yet many of the cleaners, security guards, caterers and other staff who enable football clubs to operate do not earn enough to cover the cost of living, according to Citizens UK. Of the Premier League clubs, only four – Everton, Liverpool, Chelsea and West Ham – commit to paying the “living wage” of £9 an hour and £10.55 in London. That is simply “not right”, says the charity. “I struggle to put food on the table for my family and I often have to have cut-price meals,” says one cleaner who works at Manchester United’s Old Trafford stadium.
Rainbow Caravan: A long journey to LGBT freedom
By Vicky Baker, BBC News
Nogales, Mexico: 10 August 2017… “Are you ready?” says the voice behind the smartphone, which pans along a queue. Six gay men and 11 transgender women stand together in single file, clutching their papers. Just metres ahead are the revolving grilled gates of the US-Mexico border.
Together they have formed a caravan, an informal group of people, travelling together for safety as is common for people fleeing dangers across Central America. Theirs is the “first Rainbow Caravan”, as they branded it.
What the papers say
Boris Johnson’s plan for a fast-track visa scheme to attract the world’s top scientists to the UK leads the i. However, the Times quotes one Nobel Prize-winning physicist telling the prime minister “don’t take us for fools” over a no-deal Brexit which, he argues, would cause long-lasting damage to the UK’s status as a world leader in science. Another story to feature on front pages is the machete attack on a police officer described by the Sun as “Britain’s hardest copper” who managed to fend off his attacker by using his Taser. Read the full review for more.
Typhoon Lekima China on red alert
Police attack Man charged after officer stabbed in head
Summer weather Heavy rain and winds set to bring disruption
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09:30 Office for National Statistics releases its first estimate of the state of the UK economy for the three months from April to June.
20:00 Liverpool host promoted Norwich City in the opening game of English football’s Premier League season.
On this day
1971 The Prime Minister of Northern Ireland, Brian Faulkner, introduces a law giving the authorities the power to indefinitely detain suspected terrorists without trial in the wake of escalating violence and increased bombings.