At least 11 people have died after an amphibious “duck boat” carrying tourists sank in stormy weather in the US state of Missouri, police say.
The vessel was carrying about 30 people on Table Rock Lake, a popular tourist attraction near the town of Branson, when it capsized, local media say.
Divers have been searching the lake for about five others who are missing.
Seven people were taken to hospital, two of whom were seriously injured, police said.
Emergency crews said they responded to the incident shortly after 19:00 (00:00 GMT) on Thursday.
Skip Twitter post by @StoneCountyFire
Crews from multiple agencies are on scene of an MCI “Mass Casualty Incident” “tourist type boat involved” this is on Table Rock Lake, Stone County, Branson Missouri. Taney County assisting. Several patients transported… https://t.co/Yzp0KUgqT9
— SouthernStoneFire (@StoneCountyFire) July 20, 2018
End of Twitter post by @StoneCountyFire
A spokeswoman for the Cox Medical Center in Branson, Brandei Clifton, said that four adults and three children had arrived at the hospital shortly after the incident.
It happened as a line of powerful thunderstorms rolled through the American Midwest uprooting trees and downing power lines, resulting in a weather warning.
Video footage shot by a witness on shore showed two duck boats struggling through choppy waters and spray.
One of the boats made it to shore but the other was driven back by the wind and gradually swamped.
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Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said one of his deputies was on board at the time and had helped to rescue some of the passengers.
Amphibious vehicles are popular with tourists but have been involved in a number of fatal accidents.
In 2016, a woman died when her motorcycle was struck by a duck boat in Boston, leading to a review of the safety laws around amphibious vehicles.
A year earlier, five students were killed and dozens injured when an amphibious vehicle collided with a bus in Seattle.
In 2013, a tour operator in the UK had its tours suspended after one of its amphibious vessels caught fire.
What is a duck boat?
The vehicles used for sightseeing tours, such as the duck boat that sank in Branson, Missouri, are based on a design used during World War Two to transport personnel and supplies over land and water -known as the DUKW.
The DUKW, a six-wheel-drive amphibious truck, was first made in the US in the mid-1940s to deliver people and materials ashore where no port facilities existed.
Some 21,000 DUKWs were produced for use during World War Two. Many served on D-Day and in the Normandy landings, where 40% of supplies that landed on the beaches were carried by DUKWs.
DUKWs remained in service with the British and other armies into the 1970s, and were later adapted for use by tour operators.
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The UK’s new Brexit plan agreed at Chequers will deliver for Northern Ireland, the prime minister is expected to say in a speech on Friday.
Theresa May will give the address at Belfast’s Waterfront Hall on Friday morning.
It forms part of a two-day visit to Northern Ireland focussing on Brexit and the stalemate at Stormont.
The Brexit negotiations are at a crucial stage, with the Irish border being a key sticking point.
The UK and EU have both agreed that there should be no hard border in Ireland after Brexit, but are at odds on how to achieve it.
Skip Twitter post by @simoncoveney
If UK Govt don’t support current EU wording on Backstop in draft Withdrawal Agreement, then obligation is on them to propose a viable and legally operable alternative wording that delivers same result: no border infrastructure. Clear UK commitments were made on this in Dec+March.
— Simon Coveney (@simoncoveney) July 19, 2018
End of Twitter post by @simoncoveney
The EU has proposed a backstop that would mean Northern Ireland staying in the EU customs union, large parts of the single market and the EU VAT system.
However, the UK said that would effectively create a border down the Irish Sea.
Mrs May has repeatedly voiced her opposition and on Friday is due to do so again, saying: “The economic and constitutional dislocation of a formal ‘third country’ customs border within our own country is something I will never accept and I believe no British prime minister could ever accept.”
‘Do not accept that legal text’
Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley told BBC’s Good Morning Ulster programme the government was committed to getting a legal text for a backstop.
Earlier the Irish Tánaiste (deputy prime minister) Simon Coveney had tweeted that if the UK did not accept the EU wording on a backstop in the draft withdrawal agreement, they would have to propose an alternative that would deliver the same result.
Reacting to his comments, Mrs Bradley said while the EU had put forward a legal text, “we do not accept it”.
“We’ve put forward a counter proposal and we’re now working on how we get a backstop that we are committed to delivering but it has to be a backstop that respects the integrity of the whole UK and does not put a border in the Irish sea.”
“We are committed to getting a legal text for a backstop, if you want to call it that, that we can all agree with, but this is the insurance policy.
“What we really want to focus on is the overall relationship, the deep and special partnership we want to see with the EU in the future, which is set out in the White Paper following the Chequers agreement.”
Earlier this week, the government backed an amendment to its Customs Bill that would make it illegal for Northern Ireland to be outside the UK’s customs territory.
EU and UK negotiators have been meeting in Brussels this week to discuss the border issue.
On Thursday, the UK’s new Brexit secretary Dominic Raab had his first meeting with the EU’s chief negotiator in Brussels.
He described the meeting as “constructive” and offered to meet Michel Barnier throughout August to “intensify” talks and “get some energy” into them.
In her speech in Belfast, Mrs May will say now it is for the EU to respond and not fall back on proposals that are unworkable.
She is expected to say the EU needs to “evolve its position in kind,” adding that “on that basis, I look forward to resuming constructive discussions”.
Mrs May is also likely to reiterate that it is the government’s duty to ensure that the outcome of Brexit works for the whole of the UK, including Northern Ireland.
“For all of us who care about our country, for all of us who want this union of nations to thrive, that duty goes to the heart of what it means to be a United Kingdom and what it means to be a government,” she will say.
“Our job is not to deal with Brexit in theory, but to make a success of it in practice for all of our people.”
Mrs May has also been meeting the five main Stormont party leaders during her visit to Northern Ireland to discuss Brexit and the political deadlock at Stormont.
Northern Ireland has been without a government for 18 months, after power-sharing between the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and Sinn Féin collapsed.
The prime minister met DUP leader Arlene Foster in Fermanagh on Thursday evening, as well as the deputy leader of the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP), Nichola Mallon.
Mrs May will talk to political representatives from Sinn Féin, the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) and Alliance on Friday morning, before meeting young people to hear their views on Northern Ireland’s future.
She will then give her speech on Brexit at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast.
Friday’s speech in Northern Ireland marks the prime minister’s first major attempt to sell the Chequers agreement since it was reached by her cabinet earlier this month.
She is due to tour other parts of the UK over the summer in an attempt to persuade businesses and citizens of its benefits.
Mrs May’s speech comes as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that some EU countries will suffer significant economic damage if the UK leaves without a trade deal.
Both the UK and EU are stepping up preparations for a “no deal” Brexit.
The two sides insist it is not what they want – and that reaching a deal by the autumn is still very much on the cards.
But they have yet to agree how their final relationship will work, with key issues around cross-border trade unresolved, and the UK’s official departure date of 29 March 2019 fast approaching.
The Republic of Ireland will remain within the EU and Taoiseach (Irish prime minister) Leo Varadkar has said his government is making contingency plans for “the unlikely event of a no-deal hard Brexit”.
Spending time with nature offers a respite from the modern life, Sir David Attenborough has said, as he called on the the public to take part in the world’s biggest butterfly count.
The naturalist says watching butterflies in his garden “never fails to bring me great pleasure”.
The exercise involves spending 15 minutes counting butterflies and submitting the sightings online.
The majority of butterfly species have been in decline for the past 40 years.
However, this year, weather conditions in the UK – a cold winter followed by settled weather during a late spring and summer – have created the right conditions for butterflies to flourish.
Species expected to do particularly well include the holly blue, common white, common blue and red admirals.
However if the hot conditions create a drought, the results could be “catastrophic” as plants wither and insects die through lack of food, said the charity Butterfly Conservation, which organises the count.
This happened in 1976 when the butterfly population collapsed after the hot summer.
As part of the Big Butterfly Count, Butterfly Conservation is asking the public to spot and record 17 species of butterfly for the next three weeks.
In addition to contributing to conservation knowledge, mental health charity Mind says spending time in nature can help alleviate problems such as depression and anxiety.
Sir David said: “Spending time with nature offers us all precious breathing space away from the stresses and strains of modern life, it enables us to experience joy and wonder, to slow down and to appreciate the wildlife that lives side by side with us.
“I have been privileged to have witnessed some truly breath-taking wildlife spectacles in far-flung locations but some of my most memorable experiences have happened when I’ve been simply sitting and watching the wildlife that lives where I do.”
Last year’s big butterfly count was the largest ever with a record number of people submitting sightings.
But despite this, the average number of butterflies seen per 15 minute count was the lowest recorded since the survey started in 2010.
The reduced numbers of butterflies was partly due to “topsy-turvy” weather last summer, which was one of the wettest summers for 100 years.
Are butterflies in the UK under threat?
According to Butterfly Conservation, three-quarters of British butterflies are in decline.
Five species of butterfly have become extinct in the past 150 years.
The charity says that habitats being destroyed or deteriorating are the prime causes of long-term decline.
A growing taste for al fresco dining is driving record charcoal sales in the UK but is it also fuelling global deforestation and climate change?
Last year Britain last year imported nearly 90,000 tonnes of charcoal.
It’s much cheaper than sourcing it from within the UK but where is it coming from and at what cost to the environment?
The BBC took a random selection of charcoal bags from supermarkets and shops to be tested.
The testing was carried out at a specialist laboratory by experts in Hamburg, Germany.
Volker Haag is a scientist at Thünen-Institut of Wood Research. He carried out the independent tests to ascertain exactly which species were in the bags.
Mr Haag told us: “Within the investigation of the four assortments that you brought to us, we found mixture of timbers which naturally originate in tropical and sub-tropical areas.
“For example, we discovered Eucalypt which we find in Australia, also Fabaceae and Acacia, which could be from South America, from Asia or from Africa.”
Forests in tropical and sub-tropical regions are home to many endangered species which need to be protected for the health of the embattled planet and the fight against climate change.
Whilst it is not illegal to source charcoal from tropical forests, most retailers do claim their supply chains originate in sustainable woodlands.
The majority of the bags, though, have no information about the country of origin, let alone specific forests. But most do carry the FSC logo.
The Forest Stewardship Council is the world’s biggest certification scheme of wood products.
Its stamp should be an assurance that the charcoal is sourced from well-managed forests but the head of the organisation Kim Carstensen, told us mistakes have been made.
“I am sure there has been tropical charcoal coming into the UK market. I am sure most of these would have been without the FSC logo but I cannot guarantee that there hasn’t been any problem with some of the FSC certified materials.
“Since last year, we have been looking into the charcoal business as a high risk area. We have found charcoal where we were uncertain about where it came from. We thought ‘hmmm, this looks different from what we had expected’.”
Mr Carstensen said that the charcoal business is considered “high risk”.
The supply chains are complex and, as a result, in the last year, the FSC has retracted certificates from 21 companies which were found to be selling unsustainable products.
The FSC has more than 200 million hectares of forests, across the globe as what it calls certified forests but not all of them are mapped.
According to UN figures, the UK imported nearly 90,000 tonnes of charcoal last year, up from around 70,000 tonnes in 2016.
The charcoal came from different places, including Nigeria and Paraguay where deforestation is a major issue.
Last year, the two countries supplied 10,000 tonnes of charcoal each to the UK.
Conservationists in Nigeria, which has one of the highest deforestation rates in the world, are quite worried.
“Deforestation in the country is alarming and disheartening for some of us who work in the conservation sector,” says Stephen Aina, a conservation officer with the Nigerian Conservation Foundation.
“Due to the proximity to the Lagos port, forests in Oyo State and in areas sharing a boundary with Benin Republic have been largely destroyed.
“Kwara State is now one of the major hotspots of charcoal production in the country.”
Greenpeace International recently disassociated itself from the FSC, asking the organisation “to act with urgency to improve the transparency”.
The FSC’s Kim Carstensen said mixing of the wood from different locations by suppliers was a major challenge in terms of providing information on the source.
He said “It’s more complicated. Once it gets mixed, you cannot say it is from one place, it will be from several places … then what is the information you are going to get (from the label)?”
Studies have shown that the mixing up of charcoal by suppliers is a major threat to tropical forests.
Research by WWF Germany has found Poland imports charcoal from risk-prone countries, particularly from Ukraine and Nigeria – which are then repackaged before being sent to Germany.
Poland is also one of the main suppliers to the UK.
“In the whole of Europe I would say the risk is really high,” says Johannes Zahnen of WWF, Germany.
“The (source) countries we are talking about like Paraguay and Nigeria and also Ukraine – all you can think of, it’s corruption, illegal logging, destructive logging, forest destruction,” he says.
“And it’s definitely not sustainable what is happening there. And if you are buying from there, it’s a high risk, that you are linked to these criminal things and to this really destructive thing.”
The global deforestation picture
About half the wood extracted worldwide from forests is used to produce energy, mostly for cooking and heating, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization.
Of all the wood used as fuel worldwide, about 17 % is converted to charcoal.
The UN body expects global charcoal production to continue to increase in coming decades.
Suppliers and supermarkets
Marks and Spencer
• At M&S, we have a comprehensive sustainable wood policy.
• We work with the FSC
• We are aware where the product is sourced from, but it’s commercially sensitive information and therefore not something we can share.
Big K (supplies Marks and Spencer and local petrol stations across the country)
• Big K places huge importance on the sourcing of all our charcoal products.
• Since 1999, we have been a certified supplier of FSC goods.
• In addition, we also conduct our own due diligence on the products we supply.
• Co-op packaging now states that the product is produced and packed in Namibia.
• Our product is made from Acacia which is an invasive bush species.
• All Co-op Fair Trade charcoal is from one of four agricultural farms in Namibia.
• The pack also carries the FSC mark
Tesco sells both “FSC certified” and non-certified brands.
Coverage: Live coverage on BBC One and BBC Two, with text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app. Full details
The 2018 edition is a very different Greg Rutherford.
Compared to the Olympic gold medal winner, he is six years older and several pounds heavier, with a few more creases round the eyes, plenty more creaks in the joints and lower expectations in mind.
He returns to London Stadium on Sunday for the Anniversary Games in search of memories rather than medals.
“I am just a bit broken,” the 31-year-old British long jumper told BBC Sport.
“I am not coming in to win because I just don’t really have that in my body. I just want to go out and enjoy.
“In 2012 the whole aim was to try and win the Olympic title. This time I am going to try and give back to the crowd, take as many selfies as I can and sign as many autographs as I can.”
Right ankle, left ankle, groin, abdominal muscles, hamstrings – over the years, all have failed as Rutherford flung himself eight metres plus and to long jump titles at world, Olympic, Commonwealth and European levels.
It will take an amputation to fix his most recent problem. Fortunately, it is only a troublesome appendix which kept him out of the British Championships earlier this summer.
The operation is booked for the end of the year, after his retirement from the sport.
Barring a dramatic improvement in his form to force his way in the European Championship team, the Anniversary Games is Rutherford’s first stop on a farewell tour that will also take in Birmingham’s Diamond League meeting and the Great North CityGames in Newcastle.
It will not be goodbye to the public eye, though.
Two days after he clambers out of the pit for the final time on Tyneside, he starts filming on a yet-to-be-revealed television project.
It is seamless transition at a life stage that many athletes find to be more like an elephant trap.
Earlier this month, American Tianna Bartoletta, who won Olympic long jump gold at Rio 2016, revealed her own stark situation.
“If I left the sport today, I’d be leaving with six gold medals, three bronze medals and a world record – but I’d also be leaving with barely a nickel to my name to help propel me to my ‘next thing’,” she wrote on her blog.
Rutherford has been planning for his retirement since he was a teenager.
“The first ever time I was interviewed by the BBC was as a European silver medallist in 2006,” he remembers.
“I wanted the interview to go well because I knew that television and broadcasting was what I wanted to get into.
“I was berated after the Olympics for appearing here, there and everywhere – but I had to. There were 29 British gold medallists at London 2012.
“I was astute enough to realise that not many of those were going to become names that people remember.
“Jess Ennis-Hill and Mo Farah were always going to be the superstars, I had to hang onto their coat-tails as much as I could.
“I had my moment and I had to capitalise to create a life for myself and my family.”
Rutherford’s IMDB entry lists 30 television credits, with only London 2012 and Rio 2016 – listed as ‘mini-series’ – involving his day job of athletics.
Appearances on Strictly Come Dancing, The Crystal Maze, Battlechefs, Time Crashers, The Cube, Celebrity Juice, 8 Out Of 10 Cats and many, many more have given him the mainstream recognition for which athletics itself has struggled in recent years.
Last weekend’s Athletics World Cup at the London Stadium, last year’s Nitro Athletics event in Australia and various city-centre street stunts have attempted to capture new fans.
But Rutherford thinks the problem starts at the top.
“Athletics is a professional sport run by amateurs,” he adds.
“You could take most athletics competitions, show them to a fan from a century ago and they would completely recognise the sport. We need to open up and change. Everything is commercialised and athletics doesn’t do that.
“We need to look at other sports. If a sport like darts can become as exciting and big as it has, then we know athletics can.”
Allowing sponsors more space on the sport’s stars is one of his suggestions. The possibility of Indian Premier League cricket-style city franchises is another.
And if you build it, Rutherford believes that they will come.
“Events like this weekend are incredible. We have a field on par with any World or Olympic final,” he said.
“When people see it in real life, guys leaping out over eight metres, the sheer speed of the sprinters, the drama of the distance events – they understand that our sport is really, really special.”
Donald Trump wants Russian President Vladimir Putin to visit the US this autumn. The two men met at the beginning of this week in Finland, and despite some significant fall-out, planning is under way for a second get-together. Moscow hasn’t reacted publicly yet to the invitation.
“OK… that’s going to be special,” laughed US Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats when told about it. Why that reaction? Well, the US intelligence services were at the centre of the aforementioned fall-out, after the president seemed to reject their view on Russian meddling in the 2016 US election and side with Moscow instead. Mr Trump said later he’d fluffed his lines and had meant the opposite. Our Trump-Putin toolkit helps explain it all.
Only the two men and their interpreters were present for the Helsinki meeting – a state of affairs Democrats are very unhappy about. They want Mr Trump’s interpreter to testify before Congress, and insist no more meetings between the two leaders should take place until the details of what was discussed are revealed.
HIV/Aids effort ‘stagnating’
“Dangerous complacency” about the ongoing threat of HIV and Aids threatens to bring about a resurgence in the spread of the disease. That’s the warning from experts in the Lancet. The number of new cases has been falling and life expectancy for those diagnosed has improved significantly due to better medication. But the experts say a stalling of HIV funding in recent years is endangering efforts to end the pandemic and there must be urgent changes in how the disease is treated and controlled.
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Chief whip criticised
On Friday, Theresa May visits Belfast on a mission to reassure people there about Brexit, while leaders from the other 27 EU nations will meet to consider her proposed deal. But back in Westminster, there’s anger about the conduct of her chief whip during a crucial Brexit vote.
MPs from different parties due to vote on different sides can have “pairing” deals to cancel each other out if they cannot take part, and Conservative Brandon Lewis has one with Lib Dem Jo Swinson while she’s on maternity leave. However, with the trade bill vote on Wednesday on a knife-edge, BBC sources say Chief Whip Julian Smith told Mr Lewis to break the pact “by accident”. Mr Lewis insists it was “an honest mistake”, but the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg says “a lot of people” are “very very cross”, with one insider describing Mr Smith’s explanation of what happened as “dog ate my homework”.
The people with dragon legs and electric fingers
By Daniel Gordon, BBC Ouch
Viktorija Radvila’s custom-made prosthetic leg cover is adorned with sculpted dragons and crystal beads. She describes it as a “Sunday best” item. “I put this on instead of a necklace or rings if I’m going out and I want to look smart,” the 34-year-old Lithuanian, who now lives near London, says. “I don’t wear it round the house because my dogs might chew it.” The cover was printed using 3D technology and is attached to her prosthetic limb with magnets.
Read the full article
What the papers say
The latest figures for England and Wales showing big rises in violent crime are widely reported. The Daily Express says they’re evidence of a runaway crime wave. Its headline: “Lawless Britain”. For the Daily Mail, they reveal the bleak truth about “Wild West Britain”. The Daily Telegraph says they coincide with a call by Justice Secretary David Gauke for prison to “change the lives” of criminals instead of being used solely as a tool for “punishment”. Elsewhere, according to the Times, Theresa May is to put the country on a no-deal Brexit footing this summer as she prepares a series of public warnings about the impact of leaving the EU without an agreement. And for its lead, the Sun brands Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar an “air head” over his latest Brexit remarks.
‘Duck boat’ capsizes At least eight dead on US lake
Disclosure MPs criticise rape case failures
‘Dr Bumbum’ Celebrity surgeon arrested after patient death
‘Big O’ reunion? Liam Gallagher extends olive branch to Noel
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How to invent (and be world champion of) your own sport
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If you read one thing today
The occult theory behind India’s house of ‘mass hangings’
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Today Khalid Ali, who was found guilty of plotting a knife attack on MPs and police in Westminster, due to be sentenced
Today Irish Ryanair pilots stage a 24-hour strike, forcing the cancellation of more than 20 flights between the UK and Ireland
On this day
1960 Ceylon – later renamed Sri Lanka – makes history by choosing the world’s first female head of government, Sirimavo Bandaranaike
How do you pay for childcare in the summer holidays? (Huffington Post)
Here’s how Europe is preparing for a messy Brexit: Dogs, drones, do nothing (Bloomberg)
How learning to navigate London on crutches revealed a new side to the city (City Metric)
Ruined villages and failed utopias: The fascinating stories behind 10 company towns (Daily Telegraph)
The runway at Gatwick Airport had to be closed and flights were diverted after an inbound airliner requested an emergency landing.
The British Airways Airbus from Naples landed shortly after midnight on Friday after reporting a technical fault.
The A320 remained on the runway while an inspection took place. The main runway was closed but reopened at 04:58 BST.
A handful of flights had to be diverted before the standby runway was opened.
No-one was injured in the emergency landing and passengers were able to disembark the aircraft a short time later.
British Airways said: “Our flight landed safely after our pilots requested a priority landing as a precaution after a technical fault.
“Our engineers are currently conducting a thorough check of the aircraft.”
Michael Edwards who was on a school trip returning to Gatwick from Naples on the affected flight, tweeted: “What a top bunch of students! Stayed mature and calm through a difficult situation! All smiles as we head for the bus!”
An EasyJet service from Paphos and a TUI flight from Lanarca flew to Birmingham before the standby runway opened.
A spokesman for Gatwick Airport said the passengers from the two diverted flights were returned to Gatwick by coach.
The latest crime figures for England and Wales, showing big rises for knife attacks, robbery and homicides, are widely reported and make the lead for the Daily Telegraph and the Daily Express.
The Express describes the figures as a runaway crime wave. Its headline: “Lawless Britain”. For the Daily Mail, they reveal the bleak truth about “Wild West Britain”.
Some of the papers challenge the Conservatives’ claim to be the party of law and order.
In the Telegraph’s view, no government can preside over rising levels of serious crime and fail to be punished by the electorate – and the figures “should sound the alarm bells”.
The Mail accepts that police budgets have been cut, but says a more likely explanation for the rise is that criminals are emboldened by the abject failure of forces to bring them to heel.
The Express says every crime, no matter how trivial, must be investigated. Wrongdoers should know that they will be punished and tracked down, it adds.
For the Sun, cash is not the only answer.
It says many forces are “appallingly led” and “obsessed with their image” – with investigations “driven by political correctness – all while ignoring the basics of keeping the public and their property safe”.
The Telegraph says the figures coincide with a call by Justice Secretary David Gauke for prison to “change the lives” of criminals instead of being used solely as a tool for “punishment”.
In an interview for the paper, he says inmates should be given “hope” to help rehabilitate them and stop the cycle of re-offending.
The Mail’s lead is a vote by MPs to grant themselves anonymity in cases where they are accused of sexual harassment or expenses fraud.
“What a cosy cover-up!” is the headline.
Its leader column complains that after the expenses scandal of 2009, MPs on all sides promised there would be a new spirit of openness about misdemeanours of all kinds.
Yesterday, the paper declares, that promise was “left in tatters”.
According to the Times’ main story, Theresa May is to put the country on a no-deal Brexit footing this summer as she prepares a series of public warnings about the impact of leaving the EU without an agreement.
It says consumers and companies will be given detailed advice on a weekly basis on how to prepare for “a disorderly Brexit”.
As part of the campaign, it adds, up to 250,000 small businesses will be asked to start preparing to make customs declarations for the first time.
The European Commission’s call on countries across the EU to step up preparations for a no-deal Brexit is widely reflected upon, but a number of papers think the risk of chaos is being overstated.
The Financial Times says senior EU officials accept that EU governments will not blindly enforce laws that threaten financial stability, ground all air traffic or halt production at car factories as would in theory happen if no deals were made.
Simon Jenkins in the Guardian agrees. Nothing will change, he predicts – orders will go out to keep moving and await further instructions.
For its lead, the Sun reports a threat by the Irish Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, to ban British planes from flying over the Republic if the UK cuts access to its waters for his country’s fishermen after Brexit.
But the paper says the move would spectacularly backfire if Britain chose to retaliate because hundreds of thousands of Irish flights cross the UK every year.
The Mail – which also has the story – dismisses the threat. “Who does he think he’s kidding?”, it asks.
The Tory chief whip, Julian Smith, gets a strong rebuke from the Conservative Home website following the row over a “pairing” arrangement in one of the close Brexit votes this week.
He has apologised after the party chairman, Brandon Lewis, broke an agreement to abstain because he had been “paired” with the Liberal Democrat deputy leader, Jo Swinson, who’s on maternity leave.
Conservative Home says the chief whip must command the trust and respect of both his own MPs and his opposite numbers – and at this point, “that looks a tall order.”
It says Mr Smith now “lacks credibility”.
Will Julian Smith survive as Tory chief whip? the Spectator website asks.
It says the problem Mr Smith faces is that this is a Brexit story with “a human interest element and the optics are just awful: He’s accused of deceiving a new mother in order to advance his party’s Brexit plans.”
Buzzfeed News says there is no formal maternity leave for MPs, so this is the only way new mothers are able to make sure the vote is fair.
Finally, images of parched open spaces and landmarks in the Mirror – the result of the drought – contrast sharply with pictures in the Mail of the Georgian-walled garden at Hopton Hall in Derbyshire.
There, the 2,000 bushes are thriving in the heatwave and have exploded into an array of dazzling colours.
The paper explains that well-established roses do not require watering in hot, dry weather because they have taproots reaching down two or three feet to get all the moisture they need.
The garden’s owner tells the paper the roses are the best they have ever been.
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