David Johnson

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TransPennine Express's £230m north England and Scotland rail deal

<b>A £230m deal for 25 new trains to serve the north of England and Scotland has been announced by rail operator TransPennine Express (TPE).</b><p>It is part of a plan for two fleets, which will provide 125 carriages made up of electric and InterCity trains.<p>The carriages are being built in Spain after no UK …

Scotland

George Osborne Has To 'Uncork The Gauke' To Defend Treasury 'Propaganda' On 'Brexit'

Junior minister and cult figure David Gauke sent to pacify angry Tories<p>George Osborne has been criticised by Commons Speaker, John Bercow, for …

EU Facts: Would a vote to leave the EU really plunge Britain into a terrifying recession? 

David Cameron and George Osborne have published a Treasury report on the immediate economic impact of a vote to Leave the European Union in next month's referendum. We analyse the document's claims - and its omissions.<p>Is it really possible for the Treasury to state as facts what would happen to the …

EU suspends plans to extend visa-free travel to Turkey

An EU plan that would extend visa-free travel privileges to Turkey as of July 1 will be delayed over worries Ankara won't meet the key conditions on …

Netanyahu renews rejection of French peace initiative

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has renewed rejection of a French peace initiative, telling the visiting French prime minister that peace cannot be forged through international conferences but only through direct negotiations.<p>"Peace just does not get achieved through international …

Israel

Walsall terror gang jailed for assisting Islamists travel to Syria to fight for Isis

A terror gang from Walsall has been jailed for helping suspected Islamists travel to Syria to fight for Islamic State (Isis). Ringleader Ayman …

Human Activity May Wipe Out One-Third Of North American Birds

Climate change and other manmade problems are driving 37 percent of North American birds to extinction, report finds.<p>More than one-third of North America's 1,154 native bird species are at high risk of extinction due to climate change and other manmade factors, a new report found.<p>Thirty-seven …

Biodiversity

South Korea says more North Korean restaurant workers defect from third country | Reuters

SEOUL (Reuters) - Several more North Korean workers have fled their jobs in an overseas restaurant run by the isolated North, South Korea’s Unification Ministry said on Tuesday after a media report said three people had escaped from China and were claiming asylum.<p>North Korea's surveillance cameras …

North Korea

Wave of bomb threats plague dozens of schools in US and UK

Bomb threats prompted lockdowns and evacuations in dozens of elementary and high schools across the US and UK, leaving classes to be resumed only …

IMF report says Greece needs 'up-front' debt relief, lower fiscal target | Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Greece needs “up-front, unconditional” debt relief and a sharply lower budget surplus target to make its bailout viable and its debt sustainable over the long term, International Monetary Fund staff said on Monday.<p>Demonstrators display the Greek flag in front of parliament in …

Economics

Nicola Sturgeon Accuses Cameron And Osborne Of Running 'Fear-Based' Campaign To Stop 'Brexit'

Tory-led pro-EU campaign 'insults people's intelligence' says Scotland's First Minister<p>Nicola Sturgeon has accused David Cameron and George Osborne …

Jihadi John's fourth Beatle unmasked as refugee given shelter in UK

A refugee given shelter in Britain as a child has been unmasked as the fourth brutal member of Jihadi John’s “Beatles” execution squad who went to Syria after being radicalised in just 17 days.<p>Former fairground mechanic El Shafee Elsheikh is believed to be the fourth member of the all-British group …

US to maintain Russia sanctions, hopes EU will keep them too

WASHINGTON (AP) — Washington will maintain economic sanctions against Russia over its support of armed separatists in eastern Ukraine and its …

Russia

Illegal UK-made cluster bombs found in Yemeni village attacked by Saudis

Banned UK-manufactured cluster bombs have been found in a Yemeni village targeted in Saudi-led coalition airstrikes, leading to calls for the UK to come clean on its weapon sales and military support to Saudi Arabia.<p>The unexploded BL-755 cluster bomb is designed to be dropped from the UK-made …

'You can’t trust Cameron': Brexiteers back Army minister Mordaunt over Turkey EU claims

After Prime Minister David Cameron suggested Tory minister Penny Mordaunt was lying over Turkey’s prospects of joining the EU, pro-Brexit campaigners have rallied in her support.<p>In an interview with ITV over the weekend, Cameron maintained that Turkey joining the EU was not <i>“remotely on the cards”</i> …

Iraqi Forces Begin Massive Offensive to Retake Fallujah

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said Sunday that Iraqi forces had begun a military campaign to retake the ISIS stronghold of Fallujah.<p>The offensive against the strategic city 41 miles west of Baghdad promises "a moment of great victory," Abadi said on state TV.<p>Iraq's Joint Operation Command …

Sunni Islam

No, U.S. Ground Troops Aren’t Headed To Libya Anytime Soon

Despite reports suggesting an imminent deployment, Libya’s fractured politics likely mean there won’t be boots on the ground anytime soon.<p>ISTANBUL — Washington has yet to find viable partners for a robust military presence in Libya, contrary to some reports, U.S. officials and counterterrorism …

Africa

Dear Britain, don't leave the EU, we'd miss you

Writers from newspapers in Europe’s five big powers explain what their countries stand to lose if the UK votes for Brexit<p>Germany<p>Just weeks before the British vote, Angela Merkel must be feeling exasperated: it’s one of the biggest moments facing the European Union, which she has directed for years, …

Europe

Treasury 'Brexit' Dossier Of Doom Warns Of 820,000 Job Losses And Recession

Cameron and Osborne double down on economic warning dubbed 'bollocks' by one Tory MP<p>As many as 820,000 jobs could be lost if Britain votes to leave …

Bombs kill nearly 150 in Syrian government-held cities: monitor | Reuters

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Bombs killed nearly 150 people and wounded at least 200 in Jableh and Tartous on Syria’s Mediterranean coast on Monday in the government-controlled territory that hosts Russian military bases, monitors and state media said.<p>Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attacks in …

Middle East

Naked hotel guest found by police after sleepwalking into street asked for a selfie before being returned

A naked hotel guest had to be returned to their accommodation by police after sleepwalking into the street.<p>The individual, who has not been identified, was discovered by officers around 4.30am on Chorlton Street, Manchester, close to the city’s bus station and Metropolitan university.<p>Police …

Britain grants asylum to Mohamed Nasheed, ex-Maldives leader described as 'new best friend' by David Cameron

Britain has granted political refugee status to Mohamed Nasheed, the ousted former president of the Maldives whom David Cameron once described as his “new best friend”.<p>Mr Nasheed said last night that “given the slide towards authoritarianism” in his homeland, he and other opposition leaders “have …

Human Rights

British Muslims becoming a nation within a nation, Trevor Phillips warns

British Muslims are becoming a nation within a nation, the former chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission has warned.<p>Commenting on a ground-breaking survey, Trevor Phillips said we are “in danger of sacrificing a generation of young British people to values that are antithetical to the …

Greece's parliament approves new austerity bill

Lawmakers in Athens have passed a bill that will introduce further tax cuts, price hikes and a new privatisation fund. Greece has to save 5.4 billion …

Prince Andrew facing more questions about Kazakhstan links

Prince Andrew is facing more questions about his links to Kazakhstan after new claims emerged about the controversial sale of his marital home.<p>In 2007, the Duke of York sold Sunninghill Park in Ascot, Berkshire, to Kazakhstan oligarch Timur Kulibayev for £15 million – £3 million above the asking …

Buckingham Palace

‘Irrelevant and toxic’ Labour losing out to Ukip, inquiry finds

Report by former policy chief Jon Cruddas says party is alienating socially conservative voters on issues such as immigration and welfare<p>Labour is in danger of becoming “irrelevant to the majority of working people” because the party fails to represent their concerns about immigration, Europe, …

Elections

War on Isis: Raqqa residents told they can't flee after coalition drops leaflets saying 'leave'

Islamic State (Isis) enforcers have reportedly told residents of its stronghold Raqqa that they cannot flee the city after a militia coalition …

Only one in eight jihadists returning to UK is caught and convicted

Just one in eight of the 400 British foreign fighters who have travelled to Syria and since returned home has been successfully prosecuted.<p>Figures disclosed by the Home Office show that only 54 fighters from the UK suspected of having fought in Syria and Iraq have been convicted of an …

Vote Leave embroiled in race row over Turkey security threat claims

Brexit group ‘appealing to prejudice’ with argument that Turkey’s accession to EU would put Britons at greater risk of crime<p>The official campaign to leave the EU fronted by Michael Gove has been accused of “stoking the fires of prejudice” after it claimed that continued membership would put Britons …

United Kingdom