UK

Newspaper review: Lawrence smear claims reported

  • 24 June 2013
  • From the section UK
Papers

The family of murdered black teenager Stephen Lawrence express their shock at allegations by an undercover police officer that he took part in a covert operation to smear their reputation.

"Of all the things I've found out over the years, this certainly has topped it," Stephen's mother Doreen tells the Guardian.

According to the Daily Telegraph, the undercover officer has also claimed that his role in spying on friends and relatives of the Lawrence family was deliberately kept from Sir William Macpherson, who headed a public inquiry into the botched murder investigation.

In a statement carried by the Guardian, the Metropolitan Police says the focus must first be on getting to the truth, but at some point "it will fall upon this generation of police leaders to account for the activities of our predecessors".

The Independent says millions of South Africans have been left "fearing the worst" following news that Nelson Mandela is in a critical condition in hospital.

The Daily Mirror reports that the former South African president has not opened his eyes in days and has become unresponsive.

According to the Daily Mail, Mr Mandela's two grand-daughters have urged well-wishers to pray.

Spending deal

There is widespread coverage of what the Guardian describes as the "audacious escape" from Hong Kong by fugitive whistleblower Edward Snowden.

The paper says diplomats in Washington had been hoping the net was tightening around him and his unimpeded departure from the Chinese territory has left the White House "bewildered".

An espionage expert in the Daily Mirror warns that Mr Snowden will pay a high price for his protection from countries such as Russia and Cuba. "Each will expect him to sing for his supper," the paper says.

The Daily Telegraph is pleased the chancellor has reached a deal with all government departments on cutting spending.

It says spending reviews are normally "fraught affairs" that continue until minutes before the deadline, but on this occasion politicians appear to have focused on the right issue - what exactly the state can afford.

The Financial Times describes the spending negotiations as "bruising" but says the most surprising aspect is the extent to which ministers have been able to absorb a sixth year of cuts.

"The cuts aren't that big, it's entirely manageable", an aide to the chancellor tells the paper.

Supermarket sign

The Daily Mail reports that coffee chain Starbucks has now handed over £5m to the Treasury after being criticised for paying hardly any corporation tax in Britain

The Guardian says this first payment has gone some way towards placating the company's critics, although some still insist that that such firms should not be able to "pick and choose" how much tax they want to pay.

Finally, the Daily Telegraph is among a number of papers to report Andy Murray's assertion that he may never win Wimbledon because of the exceptional quality of the other players around him.

But, as Wimbledon fortnight dawns, Murray's supporters are undaunted.

The Sun and the Daily Express both report that a supermarket in Wimbledon has changed its name, in a show of cheer for the British number one.

For the duration of the tournament the local branch of Morrisons will be adorned with a new sign bearing the name Murrisons.

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