Monday, 09 September 2019: Farage seeks election pact with Conservatives, EU open to Brexit delay, Greece calls on EU to take in underage migrants, Putin and Macron talk about Ukraine summit


Farage seeks election pact with Conservatives: Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage has offered the Conservatives an electoral pact. He wrote in the “Sunday Telegraph” that if a general election was to result in a pro-Brexit outcome, Prime Minister and Conservative leader Boris Johnson should agree an electoral pact with the Brexit party. Johnson’s plans to hold a general election were thwarted earlier this week when the government proposed a snap poll but an insufficient number of MPs backed the move. Farage wants to see the Brexit party not face Tory opposition in seats such as Wansbeck, currently held by Labour chairman Ian Lavery, and West Bromwich East, held by the deputy leader Tom Watson. Chancellor Sajid Javid told the BBC that the Tories did not need an electoral alliance but did not categorically deny that they might need to work with Farage.,,

Johnson prepares plan to stop Brexit extension: Prime Minister Boris Johnson has prepared plans to legally stop a Brexit extension, the “Daily Telegraph” has reported. Johnson’s advisers held a meeting on Sunday to counter the strategy to prevent the parliament’s attempts at enforcing a three-month Brexit extension if no new deal is agreed. One plan under consideration would see Johnson send an accompanying letter alongside the request to extend Article 50 setting out that the Government does not want any delay after Oct 31. Johnson will fly to Dublin to meet Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar this Monday.,,,

Tories bid to depose Speaker Bercow after Commons revolt: The Conservative Party plans to stand a candidate against Speaker John Bercow at the next general election. Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom accused Bercow of breaking the rules of parliament by allowing MPs to take control of Commons business. She said by allowing the use of Standing Order Number 24 – a procedure normally used to trigger emergency debates – to take over the parliamentary timetable, Bercow had not just bent the rules, he had broken them. Her comments come days after MPs backed a motion to take control of the Commons timetable to pass legislation to block a no-deal Brexit.,

Parliamentary standards watchdog: MP Griffiths cleared over sex texts to two women
Controversial comments: Defence Secretary Wallace under fire for appearing to condone torture
Palace of Westminster: Anger over Westminster security pass for prime minister’s adviser Cummings


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EU open to Brexit delay: This Monday, British MPs vote again on whether to trigger an early election – the vote is expected to fail. Britain is speculating about a collapse of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s cabinet after the sudden resignation of Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd on Saturday. Rudd criticised Johnson’s Brexit plans and his decision to expel 21 MPs from the Conservative party, after her former colleagues rebelled last week over a bill designed to avoid a no-deal Brexit. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab praised his party’s whips for restoring discipline and said the 21 MPs had known the consequences when they voted against the government to hand control of parliament to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. The EU Parliament is open to a delay of the Brexit withdrawal date beyond 31 October, according to a draft resolution. France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has said if circumstances remained the same, the EU would not grant the UK a Brexit extension. (Rudd); (Raab); (EU Parliament); (Le Drian)

Greece calls on EU to take in underage migrants: The Greek government has called on the other EU states to take in underage migrants from overcrowded refugee camps on the Aegean islands. Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said it was unacceptable that countries refused to take in 50 or 100 children. He called on the EU to implement measures against states that refused to help with underage migrants. Mitsotakis also criticised Turkey for trying to coerce either Greece or Europe in its attempts to get support for a plan to resettle Syrian refugees in northern Syria. He said Europe had given six billion euros in recent years, within the framework of an agreement between Europe and Turkey. But a discussion at a European level with Turkey on how to extend the financial benefits of the 2016 deal could not happen while Greece was on the receiving end of threats and bullying behavior. The German rescue ship “Alan Kurdi” has reported a new suicide attempt by a minor. (Underage migrants); (Turkey); (Suicide attempt)

Putin and Macron talk about Ukraine summit: French President Emmanuel Macron and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin spoke by phone on Sunday. They discussed a recent prisoner swap between Ukraine and Russia, agreeing that it gave momentum for a summit of the so-called Normandy group – France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine – to discuss issues between Ukraine and Russia. After five years of conflict stoked by Russia in eastern Ukraine, the two estranged neighbours swapped dozens of prisoners on Saturday in a long-anticipated exchange that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky hailed as the first step to end the war. The swap included 24 sailors detained by Russia late last year and the Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov. The Netherlands criticised the release of Vladimir Tsemakh, a former commander of pro-Russian separatist forces in Ukraine’s east.,,,

Eurogroup head Centeno warns Italy over budget: The Italian government should not challenge EU fiscal rules when it submits its draft 2020 budget to Brussels next month, the head of eurozone finance ministers Mario Centeno has warned. Italy must continue in the difficult task of promoting growth with a fiscal policy that faced the restrictions which everyone faced. Centeno said existing rules were flexible enough and warned the government against using the 2020 budget as a pretext to push for changes.

Nuclear deal: EU failed to meet commitments of 2015 deal, says Iran’s nuclear chief
Afghanistan: US President Trump says he cancelled secret meetings with Taliban leaders, Afghan president


Former Lufthansa manager is Georgia’s new prime minister: The Georgian parliament on Sunday approved a new government led by former interior minister Giorgi Gakharia. He worked in Russia as a general manager of food company and regional director of the German aviation company Lufthansa and was a visiting lecturer at Moscow State University before returning to Georgia and giving up Russian citizenship in 2013. His popularity has sagged since the brutal dispersal of an anti-Russia protest in Tbilisi in June.

“Yellow Vest” protesters revive rallies across France: Thousands of “Yellow Vest” protesters rallied in French cities on Saturday after demonstrations had tapered off during the summer. Clashes between police and protesters marred the demonstration in Montpellier. Police reported that they detained seven and arrested nine protesters, mainly for throwing objects at officers. Smaller rallies were held in other cities around France. Heat waves in June and July caused about 1,500 more deaths than usual in France over that period, the country’s health minister Agnes Buzyn said on Sunday. (“Yellow Vests”); (Heat waves)

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First gay pride parade in Bosnia: Several thousand people marched in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo on Sunday to protest for equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Among the attendees was US ambassador to Bosnia and Herzegovnia Eric Gordon Nelson, who is gay, as well as ambassadors from other Western countries. More than 1,000 police officers secured the event. No violent incidents were reported connected with the march. Two queer events in Sarajevo have come under attack from extremists in the past. The march on Sunday was seen as a test of whether the country can embrace values that could enable the EU membership to which it aspires.,,

Greece: Prime Minister Mitsotakis calls on creditors to ease austerity measures
Poland: PiS promises voters even more cash ahead of October election
Spain: New election more likely
Austria: Parties campaign for elections
Norway: Dogs die in mystery illness

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Far-right extremist elected to local council: Politicians of Germany’s mainstream parties expressed their shock after it emerged that their representatives had elected a member of the far-right National Democratic Party (NPD) as a municipal administrator in the village of Altenstadt. According to regional public broadcaster hr, Altenstadt’s SPD leader Markus Brando said those at the meeting had been forced to elect Stefan Jagsch because there were no alternative candidates. CDU party leaders declared their shock and lack of understanding at Jagsch’s election. They added that this wrong decision had to be corrected.


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