BBC News

Newspaper headlines: Suspect in police shooting 'on counter-terror radar'

By BBC News

image copyrightNeil Donohue
image captionSgt Ratana, 54, was a keen rugby union coach as well as being a fan of performance motorcycles and weight-training

The police officer who was shot dead inside a custody centre in south London, Sgt Matt Ratana, is pictured on most of the front pages.

A friendly bear of a man who loved rugby is how Sgt Ratana is described in many of them. The Daily Mirror says he was coaching at East Grinstead Rugby Club in West Sussex just hours before he was shot in a custody suite in south London.

A close family friend tells the Times she simply cannot believe what happened, asking: "How could someone bring a gun into a police station?"

The Daily Express describes Sgt Ratana as an "inspirational officer" who was shot moments before a metal detector would have discovered the weapon.

The suspect, the Daily Mail says, produced a revolver from down his trousers and fired several shots, wounding himself in the ensuing chaos.

The Daily Telegraph says an investigation by the police watchdog is expected to centre on how the arresting officers failed to find the gun when the suspect was stopped and searched earlier, while the Sun bemoans a "monumental and terrible security lapse".

All of the papers - with the exception of the Financial Times - carry front and back page advertisements for the government's Covid-19 app, urging people to take part in a "big download weekend".

As ubiquitous on the inside pages are pictures of city streets left deserted by the 22:00 BST hospitality curfew in England.

One striking image shows blue-jacketed council inspectors, peering through a letterbox in London's normally busy Soho district, checking for speakeasies. "Look what we've become" is the Daily Mail's caption.

Alongside that picture, the Mail has a report warning that 75,000 people could die from non-Covid causes as a result of lockdown.

The figures - presented to the government's scientific advisers in July - reportedly include deaths in care homes and hospitals in March and April, as well as projections of what may happen if people continue to miss operations and cancer diagnoses.

The paper also points out a finding that if hospitals had been overrun with coronavirus cases, the number of those who would have died due to the virus could have reached 1.4 million.

Nonetheless the Mail believes the document will further increase pressure on Boris Johnson, not to introduce further restrictions.

Plan for Christmas

The government is planning to deliver three million coronavirus tests a day by December as part of efforts to "save Christmas", according to the Daily Telegraph.

Ministers are said to be willing to do "whatever it takes" to ensure families can meet over the festive period.

If the testing target is missed and there's no vaccine, the Telegraph says families may be able to isolate for two weeks before Christmas, to enable groups larger than six to meet safely.

Department of Health sources, however, urge a note of caution, saying nothing can be guaranteed at this stage.

The Telegraph also reports that MPs are to be given a vote on the "rule of six" next month.

The paper says it's the start of a climbdown by No 10 in its row with Tory backbenchers over whether coronavirus restrictions can be introduced without the consent of Parliament.

image copyrightPA Media
image captionStudents in Scotland have been told not to go to pubs, parties or restaurants

Meanwhile, there's a call in the Guardian for universities to drop all face-to-face teaching, and potentially allow students to return home, until problems with the government's test and trace system are fixed.

In an interview with the paper, the head of the University and College Union urges vice-chancellors to act now or - with infection rates rising - there won't be enough staff left to teach.

Jobs warning

The Financial Times leads with a warning that one million people are set to lose their jobs by the end of the year - with the young and the low-skilled hit the hardest.

Economists tell the paper the chancellor's new jobs support scheme is "not a game-changer" and unlikely to persuade firms to keep on staff over the winter.

The FT explains that many firms simply cannot afford to bring back furloughed workers, even part time.

Meanwhile, the Telegraph - among other papers - says Boris Johnson's popularity in the party is fading while the chancellor's star is rising.

A poll by Ipsos Mori is widely reported, suggesting the public rates Rishi Sunak above the prime minister, for qualities including leadership, judgement and ability to cope in a crisis.

Some of the broadsheet editorials fly the flag for the humble cardigan, after a leading divorce lawyer gave her staff a "dressing down for dressing down".

Ayesha Vardag reportedly issued an edict to lawyers at her firm calling for a return to discreet tailoring.

She is said to have branded cardies "almost never OK" and more suited to cosying up by the fire.

The Times says the beauty of the cardigan is its adaptability - and this is one verdict that must not be delivered in Ms Vardag's favour. With all due respect, the paper says, she needs to button it.