UK to act with 'urgency' over Syrian refugees says PM

 

David Cameron and Ed Miliband on UK helping Syrian refugees

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The UK will act "with the greatest urgency" in offering the "most needy people" in Syrian refugee camps a "home in our country", says David Cameron.

The prime minister told MPs he wanted to "particularly help those who have been victims of sexual violence".

Deputy PM Nick Clegg said on Tuesday torture victims, elderly and disabled people would also get priority.

The government expects the number of refugees accepted to be in the hundreds but has not set a specific target.

Syria refugee camp Germany is taking 11,000 refugees

The UK's resettlement programme is to be separate from the ongoing UN High Commissioner for Refugees scheme which has seen Germany commit to admitting more than 10,000 Syrian refugees and France take 500.

The government has been reluctant to admit any Syrian refugees to the UK, preferring to focus its humanitarian aid on refugees in the region.

But a fear of looking hard hearted and the threat of parliamentary defeat on Wednesday changed minds in Downing Street.

The deputy prime minister Nick Clegg said Britain had a moral responsibility to help and several hundred refugees would now be able to come.

It is not clear where the refugees will go or how long they will stay but it is expected they will get temporary visas that will be reviewed after three years.

The government is still refusing to take part in a resettlement scheme run by the UN high commissioner for refugees.

But the agency welcomed the government's offer and said it would help officials identify the most vulnerable people.

Home Secretary Theresa May told MPs the UK's goal was a political settlement that would "bring an end to the violence in Syria", allowing Syrians to "return to their homes and livelihoods in peace".

But the UK had agreed with the UNHCR office in London to set up a "vulnerable person relocation scheme", which will run in parallel to the agency's own refugee scheme, with the aim of resettling those at the "greatest risk" in the UK.

The programme will focus on individual cases "where evacuation from the region is the only option", said the home secretary, and will "prioritise help for survivors of torture and women and children in need of medical care", as recommended by the UNHCR. There would also be a focus on rescuing the victims of sexual violence, Mrs May told MPs.

"This is in the spirit of the UNHCR programme but it is not technically part of it," she added, saying it would provide "greater flexibility".

She said 3,500 Syrian refugee asylum seekers were already in the UK.

Ahead of that statement Labour leader Ed Miliband welcomed the move to take refugees and urged the PM to act with urgency.

Mr Cameron replied: "We will act with the greatest urgency because, when it comes to Syria, we have acted with the greatest urgency throughout.

"We have made available £600m, which makes us the second largest humanitarian donor, we provided food for 188,000 people, clean water for almost a million and medical consultations for almost a quarter of a million.

"We will be coming forward with a scheme to help the most needy people in those refugee camps and offer them a home in our country."

During exchanges in the Commons on Monday, the government faced criticism from MPs of all political parties for declining to participate in the UN-led scheme.

The deputy prime minister's announcement on Tuesday, and the PM's comments, pre-empted a Labour-led debate on the issue, where the government was facing the prospect of a Commons defeat over its refusal to sign up to the UNHCR initiative.

Syrian refugee children play at Al Zaatri refugee camp in the Jordanian city of Mafraq, near the border with Syria The UK says half of Syria's nine million population have been displaced

Mr Clegg said: "The coalition government wants to play our part in helping to alleviate the immense suffering in Syria. The £600m we have provided makes us the second largest bilateral donor of humanitarian aid in the world.

"But as the conflict continues to force millions of Syrians from their homes, we need to make sure we are doing everything we can.

"We are one of the most open-hearted countries in the world and I believe we have a moral responsibility to help.

Chart showing country pledges on Syrian refugees

"The UN High Commission for Refugees - which backs our new resettlement programme - has said the highest priority should go to women and girls who have experienced or are at risk of sexual violence; the elderly; survivors of torture and individuals with disabilities, so that's who we'll target.

"Sadly we cannot provide safety for everyone who needs it, but we can reach out to some of those who need it most."

The BBC understands the refugees will be given temporary visas allowing them to stay for at least three years.

The visas will then be reviewed on a case-by-case basis taking into account personal circumstances and the situation in Syria.

The UNHC's representative in the UK, Roland Schilling, said the government move was "an encouraging and important step, reaffirming the UK's commitment and contribution to international relief efforts".

Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper: ''It is a good thing that the government has completely reversed its position''

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said the government's move was a "big reversal" but that "compassion and common sense have won through".

"Vulnerable Syrian refugees, torture victims, abandoned children and those struggling to cope or survive in the camps desperately need sanctuary and Britain has a moral obligation to help," she said.

But she said the UK should be working with the UN to decide on numbers rather than setting up a "parallel programme" of its own.

Refugees fleeing Syria
Map showing the number of Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries

The move was welcomed by MPs from all sides of the Commons, former Lib Dem leader Sir Menzies Campbell saying it gave the UK flexibility to help those whose suffering had been the most "grievous".

But Conservative Brooks Newmark - an expert on Syria - said numbers should be limited and those countries not making such a big contribution to the aid effort should be taking in more refugees than the UK.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage also backed the move, saying a clear distinction must be made between genuine refugees from persecution and economic migrants.

The Refugee Council's Maurice Wren said the move had been a "long time coming" but the UK was standing up for an important principle.

And Amnesty International UK director Kate Allen said: "This move is long overdue but of course it's never too late to do the right thing."

 

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  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1396.

    @1378.Ph1

    I never gave any information as I asked a question and therefore do not need to state a source. If you require any other post to be explained to you please feel free to ask.

  • rate this
    +19

    Comment number 1395.

    Surely humanitarian efforts should be given to Syrians by Britain in countries that are close to Syria so when this conflict is resolved they can go back into Syria and rebuild it, rather than transport them thousands of miles away from their countrymen and culture that they are familiar with.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 1394.

    No matter how hard we try there is no way to fit millions of refugees into this small island. Imagine the misery of those on the housing list who will see themselves moved further and further down that list, their childrens' schools admitting more and more non-speakers of English and their benefits cut yet thrown at incomers left, right and centre. You can't give what you haven't got..

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 1393.

    Nick. Please explain why we have a moral obligation to help?

    Look at the list of refugee pledges by country and the very countries who are playing out their proxy factional war in Syria are conspicuous by their absence. So Lebanon by virtue of it's proximity to Syria gets 800,000+ while the gulf states who are arming the 'rebels' haven't given a bean in aid or taken any refugees.Splendid.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1392.

    1383. MassMediocrity

    'Ivory towered liberals, like you, .....I guess you'll be opening your home'

    Yes. Three spare bedrooms. Already begun to make enquiries.

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 1391.

    1368.Graham
    How long before the "needy" refugees take up Jehad against us, the decadent westerners
    ---
    Probably not long - about as long as it takes them to find out that we were arming the insurgents who are refusing to negotiate and are committing war crimes.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1390.

    How come the Government can act with urgency to help Syrians yet their own countrymen`s plight in the floods is ignored for weeks.
    Any one know how much disaster relief has been received from abroad or whether the Red Cross and British based charities are helping the people of Somerset?

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1389.

    1366.marge
    'So you want Israel to take in thousands of people..a country the size of Wales which Europeans are at the forefront of trying to cut into even smaller pieces and handing them over to create a 22nd Arab nation.'

    The pieces are home to the Palestinian people. They have the same right to a homeland as the Israelis.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 1388.

    To see how out of touch the BBC and Establishment are with regard to public opinion just read the Editors picks.

    But hey who cares what the tax cattle think.

    2015 bring it on, then lets turn our attention to the fee, lets let Auntie swim with the sharks.

  • rate this
    -5

    Comment number 1387.

    I would rather my tax money go to help foreign refugees that British born scroungers. Go down your dole office and see who's claiming unemployment benefit. Quelle Surprise. BRITISH BORN people who can't wait for their benefits to arrive so they can waste it. My 3 months unemployment a few years ago was soul destroying because I was one of the only people there who seemed to be looking for a job.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1386.

    @1367 Conger
    "I guess men are not equal in this case"

    No,I'm afraid they're not. Was it women who started this war? Is it women committing the atrocities?
    Apart from the odd female suicide bomber,the violence is always perpetrated by men.

  • Comment number 1385.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 1384.

    There has been an active movement within politics and media to blur the traditional categories of imigration. We used to have:

    Refugees
    Economic Migrants
    Illegal Imigrants

    The first was always a yes, the second was likewise welcome with the third being resisted.

    Now we simply view 'imigrants', with no qualification or distinction.

    We should offer what help we can to these poor souls.

  • Comment number 1383.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 1382.

    To all you bleeding hearts out there who criticise the rest of us for not wanting this, urgently contact the government and offer a room in your houses to take these people in. But make sure that once peace breaks out in the Middle East (and that has not happened in my lifetime) you take the responsibility for driving them to the airport.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1381.

    This country is over a trillion in debt and continues to borrow hundreds of billions each year to pay day to day expenses.

    We don't earn enough to live at our current level, or to pay back what we have borrowed yet there are people who say we are rich!

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 1380.

    I wonder, if the roles were reversed - would these Arab/Islamic states give us refuge, ship us over to their countries, help us financially & medically...

    Judging by the total apathy and inaction of the UAE & other very rich middle eastern states - I somewhat doubt it.


    Feel free to rate this comment down.
    Like that actually means anything.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 1379.

    We will act 'with the greatest urgeny' or in otherwords only when forced to do so by the opposition and his own back-benchers

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1378.

    @ 1368.Graham

    Please give your source of this information. A study or report that you must have read that links every immigrant and muslim to extremism.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 1377.

    Can we please challenge at least one myth being propagated in this forum.

    It isn't just 'Champagne Socialists' that applaud the decision to accept our international responsibilities and take in a small number of abused, disabled and elderly Syrian refugees.

    I sincerely believe the majority of Conservatives (as opposed to the swivel-eyed rump mouthing off on here) will fully support the decision.

 

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    Tessa Jowell, the Labour MP for Dulwich and West Norwood, tells the BBC's Vicki Young: "People are more interested than we give them credit for. It depends how the campaign is conducted - the real campaign will be on the doorsteps, and church halls, and the villages and town centres of the country. That's where people do engage."

     
  56.  
    15:41: Party support in London

    The Evening Standard unveils a poll which shows Labour have a clear lead in London, with a number of coalition MPs in the capital facing a tough battle for their seats. Ed Miliband's party sits on 42%, with the Conservatives second on 32%. The Liberal Democrats have sunk to fifth-place with 7%, behind UKIP and the Greens.

     
  57.  
    @ftwestminster Financial Times Westminster

    tweets: Four themes that will decide the election on.ft.com/1Dad2gl

     
  58.  
    15:39: BBC/Populus issues poll

    Find out more about the results of the BBC's poll - which asked what people see as the most important issue to be covered by the news ahead of the election. The NHS came ahead of the economy, immigration, welfare and jobs.

     
  59.  
    15:35: Changing sides
    Douglas Carswell

    "What I do know is that it's incredibly difficult when someone changes side in politics."

    Douglas Carswell tells the Daily Politics show about the defection of UKIP MEP Amjad Bashir to the Conservatives, hours after he was suspended over various allegations by the party he was leaving.

    The Essex MP also speaks to Jo Coburn about his own defection in the opposite political direction last year.

     
  60.  
    15:24: Better than an empty chair?
    Champagne glasses

    Former SNP leader Alex Salmond tells the Aberdeen Press and Journal he thinks the broadcasters should put objects in place of any party leaders who don't show up for the TV debates. He suggested the following:

    David Cameron - a glass of champagne

    Ed Miliband - a bacon sandwich

    Nick Clegg - the pledge not to raise tuition fees he signed during the 2010 general election campaign

    Nigel Farage - a pint of beer

    Mr Salmond also said a debate between just David Cameron and Ed Miliband would be a simple re-run of PMQs, which has "turned off more television sets than the standby button".

     
  61.  
    15:17: Reality Check: Immigration
    Mark Easton

    In this video, the BBC's home editor Mark Easton reports on how immigration could factor as one of the big issues in the general election.

     
  62.  
    Tweet: @BBC_HaveYourSay Get involved

    @Liz_Hutchins tweets: 'We are addicted to the fag ends of fossil fuels' @julianhuppert tells rally #banfracking

     
  63.  
    15:05: Hoax call to No 10

    Deputy Prime Minster Nick Clegg says it is "quite right" that security is being reviewed after a hoax caller - posing as the head of government monitoring agency GCHQ - got to speak to the prime minister.

    Mr Clegg says: "Downing Street has been clear that this is being looked in to at the moment and when a hoax call like that take place, security arrangements are of course, quite rightly, reviewed."

     
  64.  
    14:59: Today in Parliament

    Work and Pensions questions kick off today's action in the House of Commons, with the controversial under-occupancy penalty - or what opponents label the "bedroom tax" - one of the topics set to be discussed.

    The House of Lords will consider the Counter-Terrorism and Security Bill. A number of peers, including former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lord Blair, are attempting to introduce an amendment to the bill, and have faced accusations they are effectively re-introducing the so-called "Snoopers Charter" after it was emphatically rejected by a joint parliamentary committee on the Communications Data Bill.

    You can follow the BBC's coverage of Parliament on Westminster Live.

     
  65.  
    14:58: 'We've stuck with it' BBC News Channel
    Liberal Democrat MP Ian Swales

    Liberal Democrat MP Ian Swales tells the BBC: "I think the fact that the coalition has been here five years proves that we can do business with people. We've had to react to the problems in the country, we knew that life would be difficult for us, both in government and as a party - but we've stuck at it, we've stuck together.

    "And I think we've made a huge difference that the public will come to recognise - maybe over the coming years when historians start to write this Parliament up they'll realise what a great job we've done."

     
  66.  
    14:48: 'Nasty' tag The Daily Mail

    A YouGov/Prospect poll for the Daily Mail says the Tories' lead Labour when voters are forced to choose between the two parties, but that 42% of voters still see the Conservatives as the "nasty party".

     
  67.  
    14:47: Election scenarios The Guardian

    The Guardian's Tom Clark looks at some of the potential outcomes of a hung parliament in May, and asks what kind of deals - if any - we might expect to see between the parties.

     
  68.  
    14:43: Fracking vote

    MPs will attempt to amend a government bill on infrastructure later on Monday - to bar the fracking of shale gas. The House of Commons debate on fracking should start just after 15:30 GMT - with voting starting at 17:30. You can watch proceedings on Democracy Live.

     
  69.  
    14:37: Three wise men BBC News Channel
    Sir Menzies Campbell, Jack Straw & Sir Richard Ottoway

    Biggest changes they've seen at Parliament? Sir Menzies Campbell, Jack Straw & Sir Richard Ottoway give their views - Watch their BBC News Channel interview on Twitter

     
  70.  
    The Daily Telegraph

    James Kirkup contrasts Ed Miliband's response to the Greek election result with David Cameron's, and says the Labour leader's "bland, faintly pious, and politically pointless" words leave him looking "like a bystander".

     
  71.  
    Isabel Hardman The Spectator

    writes: As coalition rows go, today's 'spat' over who is most supportive of aspirational voters really is the more boring for a while. Read more

     
  72.  
    14:25: Reality Check: Health & the NHS

    And in this report, the BBC's health editor Hugh Pym asks how the NHS will feature in the general election campaign.

     
  73.  
    14:15: Reality Check: Education
    gillian hargreaves

    Over the next three months, the BBC is going to look at the main party manifestos and 'reality check' the facts and figures that are presented.

    In this video, the BBC's education correspondent Gillian Hargreaves examines the issues that politicians will have to tackle affecting schools and universities in the run up to the general election.

     
  74.  
    14:11: Ask Nick Robinson

    More from BBC political editor Nick Robinson, who is doing a live Facebook Q&A until 1430:

    Facebook
     
  75.  
    14:03: Clegg on election debates

    Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg says he is "not completely happy" with the proposals for the televised election debates, but acknowledges that "everyone is going to have to compromise".

    He says: "I hope David Cameron takes part in those leaders' debates. I hope everyone does. I think, you know, you shouldn't be looking for excuses to wriggle out of them which appears to be the approach from the Conservative party so far."

     
  76.  
    13:56: Jagger on fracking BBC News Channel
     Bianca Jagger

    Former actress and human rights campaigner, Bianca Jagger, has joined the anti-fracking rally at Westminster. She tells BBC News: "What I hope to achieve is to convince MPs that what is at stake here is our way of life, our environment, our water sources, the air we breathe everyday - that this will be putting in danger even our commitment to reducing CO2 emissions."

     
  77.  
    13:50: Anti-fracking protest
    protesters at westminster

    Anti-fracking campaigners are protesting at Westminster where they will be handing in a petition to MPs later, signed by 300,000 people. They are opposing legislation that would allow companies to frack - or extract shale gas - from beneath people's land and home without landowners' permission.

    It comes as an influential committee of MPs has called for a moratorium on fracking on the grounds that it could derail efforts to tackle climate change.

     
  78.  
    13:47: Clegg on Greece

    Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has said that differences of opinion between Greece and other European countries must be "resolved quickly" to avoid "a long period of instability" in the eurozone.

    "Clearly the election results in Greece will now lead to a period of uncertainty in the eurozone. Any uncertainty is frankly unwelcome because what you need is stability and certainty for economic growth to really take root. And I think that one of the lessons that we can all draw looking at Greece is that we could have been Greece. As a country our deficit back in 2010 was very similar to the deficit that Greece had.

    "We took the difficult and frankly at times downright unpopular decisions to pull the country back from the brink and I hope that whatever the differences of opinion are between Greece and those other parts of the eurozone, that those differences can be resolved quickly because we can't afford a long period of instability."

     
  79.  
    13:45: Ask Nick Robinson

    BBC political editor Nick Robinson is on Facebook now, dispensing wisdom on your questions and comments in a live Q&A. Here's a sample:

    Facebook
     
  80.  
    13:39: 100 constituencies
    thurrock

    The BBC's Today programme is visiting 100 constituencies between now and polling day. The BBC's Matthew Price has been in Thurrock and finds that it is now a three-way battle.

    "The fracturing of the political landscape, which is happening across the country, makes this one of the least predictable general elections the UK has seen in recent memory," he says.

    As far as Harris, a 27-year-old scrap metal merchant from Grays in Essex, is concerned, the last five years have seen a shift in the political landscape of this country. "People's ideas of what they want have changed," he says.

     
  81.  
    Norman Smith BBC Assistant Political Editor

    tweets: Ed Miliband accuses PM of playing politics over reaction to Greek election result

     
  82.  
    13:29: Ask Nick Robinson

    BBC political editor Nick Robinson is at his keyboard, preparing to answer your questions on a live Facebook Q&A.

    Nick Robinson
     
  83.  
    Email: haveyoursay@bbc.co.uk Get involved

    Louis Lavery emails: Online voting, by mobile too, I assume? That'd likely encourage far more youngsters to vote. So long as it can be made secure. Someone give Dave a ring and see what he thinks.

     
  84.  
    Ross Hawkins Political correspondent, BBC News

    tweets: YouGov for Standard puts Lib Dems 5th in London, behind UKIP & Greens, Lab 10 ahead of Cons standard.co.uk/news/politics/… via @JoeMurphyLondon

     
  85.  
    13:01: How Parliament has changed BBC News Channel
    Sir Menzies Campbell, Jack Straw and Richard Ottoway

    The BBC's Norman Smith spoke to three eminent Parliamentarians planning to step down at the next election. Richard Ottoway, right, Jack Straw, centre, and Sir Menzies Campbell, who said the big changes he had seen was the pace of the news cycle and the lack of time to "sit, read and to think". He also said constituents were much more demanding than they used to be.

     
  86.  
    Tweet: @BBC_HaveYourSay Get involved

    @x00 tweets: Not sure I trust online voting enough. Or e-voting either >> Election should include online voting in 2020 - Bercow http://bbc.in/18hEQG1

     
  87.  
    12:45: Online voting plans

    Labour's Angela Eagle, Shadow Leader of the House of Commons, said the Speaker's Commission on Digital Democracy "suggests some interesting ways to improve our democracy and help us meet the challenges of our modern age".

    "Labour is committed to piloting online voting to see if it can be done securely and affordably. We will also create a new democracy portal to draw together in one place all of the things you need to know before you vote, we will make it easier to register to vote and we will reform the scrutiny of legislation to formalise a role for the public and give a greater role to backbench MPs."

     
  88.  
    12:34: Lib Dem tax plans
    Danny Alexander Danny Alexander, left, with Vince Cable earlier this month

    Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander hits back at Conservative claims that Lib Dem plans to raise taxes are the "enemy of aspiration".

    "The Tories seem to think that aspiration should be for the rich. The Lib Dems are delivering opportunity for everyone. We have been cutting taxes from millions of working people against the wishes of the Conservatives, eight million families over £1,300-a-year better off thanks to the Liberal Democrat tax cuts. The Tories need to recognise that everybody has the right to expect the government to be on their side, not just the wealthiest."

     
  89.  
    @estembassyuk Estonian Embassy UK

    tweets: John Bercow talks abt perks of e-voting http://ow.ly/HWeOu via @guardian. #Estonia has used e-voting since 2005 http://ow.ly/HWa1H

     
  90.  
    12:20: Greek election fallout Robin Brant Political Correspondent, BBC News

    The prime minister "respects the decision of the Greek people" but he believes that the new Greek government "need to meet their international commitments" to the IMF and other creditors, Downing Street says. Asked if David Cameron has spoken to either Germany's Angela Merkel or France's President Hollande since the election result, the PM's official spokesperson said "no".

     
  91.  
    12:09: Online voting plans BBC Radio 4 The World at One

    Professor Ian Brown, Associate Director of Oxford University's Cyber Security Centre, has told the BBC's World at One that a proposal to introduce online voting by 2020 is "really incredibly optimistic". Professor Brown, who contributed to the democracy commission set up by Commons Speaker John Bercow, said the proposal would not be deliverable in time.

    "For national elections you really want to be very sure indeed that people aren't able to break into voting systems and to affect people's opinion of the trustworthiness of the results, which I think unfortunately would be a very significant risk if we in the UK were to introduce online voting in the kind of time-frame that John Bercow has talked about," he has told the programme.

     
  92.  
    12:07: Daily Politics

    The Daily Politics with Jo Coburn is under way - today they are looking at Greece's election fallout, the row over fracking and whether the old-fashioned ballot box will be a thing of the past by 2020. You can watch it live via the Live Coverage tab on this page, or on a TV on BBC Two.

     
  93.  
    12:01: Cameron on TV debates

    The prime minister has suggested that he believes that the general election leaders' debates should also represent parties in Northern Ireland. The PM was asked if he would "turn up" for the proposed seven-way debates which would include the Green Party, the Scottish National Party and Plaid Cymru.

    He said: "We are making good progress. I was told that it was 'appalling' and 'outrageous' that I had suggested that you couldn't have one minor party without having the other minor party and I'm delighted the broadcasters have gone away and thought again. They've actually come up with rather more minor parties that I had in mind, but anyway, I'm sure they've thought it all through and they know what they are doing. Although I don't quite see why Northern Ireland seems to be missing out, because as far as I am concerned that's as important part of the United Kingdom as Wales or Scotland. But anyway, we are making good progress and I'm sure they know what they are doing.

    "I want to take part, they needed to do the minor party thing and they've certainly done that."

     
  94.  
    11:53: Coalition lessons from abroad Norman Smith BBC Assistant Political Editor

    The average time it takes continental governments to form a coalition is, on average, 30 days. "So after the election we could have a good few weeks of wrangling and manoeuvring as we try and cobble together a coalition."

     
  95.  
    11:53: Hung future?
    Nick Pearce

    Nick Pearce, director of the Institute for Public Policy Research, talks to the BBC about the possibility of a hung Parliament at the next election.

    He says coalition negotiations are often down to policy but the personal dynamics between leaders are very important too.

    "Britain is clearly evolving into a truly multi-party system," he says.

     
  96.  
    @Neil_FindlayMSP 11:53: Neil Findlay, Labour MSP

    tweets: Good to see the SNP do a U turn on the proposed women's super prison - public and Labour pressure making a real difference!

     
  97.  
    11:51: Downing Street latest Robin Brant Political Correspondent, BBC News

    Downing Street says an internal review is under way but the prime minister's official spokesman says the hoax call failings are not a disciplinary matter and they don't believe a crime was committed.

     
  98.  
    11:49: Downing Street latest Robin Brant Political Correspondent, BBC News

    The prime minister believes GCHQ should "learn what lessons to learn from this" as Downing Street confirmed an internal review was underway into how a hoax caller got through to the PM yesterday. The prime minister's official spokesman said it was not a disciplinary matter, although she admitted that parts of the protocol for putting calls through to the PM "were not followed". Asked if GCHQ's director Robert Hannigan had apologised to the PM she said that had not happened.

     
  99.  
    11:47: Osborne: Fishing & the risk from Greece

    George Osborne continues: "It is just a reminder to me - and I think a reminder to everyone here - of something very important, which is that we are linked to the fortunes of Europe. And so for everyone, today's result from the Greek election will increase economic risk for us in the European economy and I think it reinforces the need for us to go on working through an economic plan that is delivering economic security here at home."

     
  100.  
    11:45: Osborne: Fishing & the risk from Greece
    George Osborne

    UK Chancellor George Osborne, speaking in Plymouth, says: "This morning I was on a fishing boat in Newquay and the fisherman, Phil, who has fished for crabs and has done so for the last 40 years, was explaining to me how his business was being affected by the fact that spider crabs that he sells to Spain are not being sold in the same volumes - because the eurozone is not working, because jobs aren't there in Spain."

     

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