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Pro-Palestine mob brandish anti-Semitic banners comparing Israel to Nazis

Pro-Palestine mob brandish anti-Semitic banners comparing Israel to Nazis
Pro-Palestine mob brandish anti-Semitic banners comparing Israel to Nazis

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A pro-Palestine mob held antisemitic banners reading ‘all Jews support violence and imperialism’ and likening Israel to Nazi Germany during a march through central London on Saturday.

Thousands called for an end to ‘British complicity in Israel’s war crimes’ during the rally outside Downing Street – which was organised by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC).

One sign – which was misspelled – read: ‘What is antisemitic [in] saying that all Jews support violence and imperialism.’ 

Meanwhile, another brandished the words: ‘It wasn’t OK in South Africa, it wasn’t OK In Nazi Germany… So why is it OK in Palestine (it’s not!).’

The woman brandishing the sign said likening Israel to the Nazis – who murdered six million Jews during the Holocaust – is correct because of ‘Jewish supremacy’ and ‘apartheid’, Jewish News reports. 

Protesters across the world have been calling for an ‘urgent’ resolution to the Israeli-Palestine conflict. 

Shocking incidents of antisemitism have been reported during some protests, including cars bearing Palestinian flags which drove through a Jewish community in north London while the passengers screamed ‘f*** their mothers, f*** their daughters’.

Four men – who formed part of a convoy that travelled 200 miles from Bradford – were arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences over the incident. Police stepped up patrols at synagogues as a result – with Sadiq Khan saying there was ‘no excuse’ for racism.

And in May, MPs and campaigners condemned pro-Palestine protesters for waving signs referring to Adolf Hitler and the Holocaust, including: ‘Stop doing what Hitler did to you’ and ‘Israel, the new Nazi state’.

Pro-Palestine mob brandish anti-Semitic banners comparing Israel to Nazis

One sign - which was misspelled - read: 'What is antisemitic [in] saying that all Jews support violence and imperialism'

A pro-Palestine mob held antisemitic banners reading ‘all Jews support violence and imperialism’ (right) and likening Israel to Nazi Germany (left) during a march through central London on Saturday

Hundreds of people took to the streets in London on Saturday and staged a demonstration in support of Palestinians

Hundreds of people took to the streets in London on Saturday and staged a demonstration in support of Palestinians 

On Saturday, Jeremy Corbyn joined smoke grenade-touting pro-Palestine protestors outside Downing Street. 

The rally, organised by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), comes a month after another demonstration against the unrest in the Middle East descended into violence in London, with one activist even launching himself two-footed from a ledge into a man’s head. 

As the leaders of seven of the world’s most advanced economies meet in Cornwall, crowds made their way through the capital to demand Boris Johnson‘s intervention in Palestine.

The PSC is supported in the action by fellow pressure groups, Friends of Al-Aqsa, Palestinian Forum in Britain, Stop The War Coalition, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the Muslim Association of Britain. 

Photographs show hundreds of protestors holding placards reading ‘free Palestine’ and ‘sanctions on Israel’. Another read: ‘Peace to a land that was created for peace but never saw a peaceful day’.

A crowdfunder raising money to keep the protests ongoing had reached £695 just hours after it was set up on Saturday afternoon.

Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was always vocal about his pro-Palestine views during his time in opposition. He joined protests outside Downing Street on Saturday

Former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was always vocal about his pro-Palestine views during his time in opposition. He joined protests outside Downing Street on Saturday

A protestor carries a smoke flare during a pro-Palestine demonstration outside Downing Street

A protestor carries a smoke flare during a pro-Palestine demonstration outside Downing Street

Demonstrators waved flags and carried placards for the demonstrations in London on Saturday

Demonstrators waved flags and carried placards for the demonstrations in London on Saturday

Tributes are laid out on the grass as hundreds of demonstrators take to the street in support of Palestine

Tributes are laid out on the grass as hundreds of demonstrators take to the street in support of Palestine

Meanwhile, Mr Corbyn – who was vocal about his views on the conflict during his time as leader of the opposition – joined the demonstration in a strong show of support. 

Last month he spoke at a rally, saying: ‘Children should not grow up having seen their home demolished by a bomb dropped from the safety of thousands of feet above. The occupation is the issue, the occupation of the West Bank, the siege of Gaza, they are the issues.

‘While the ceasefire is a step forward, unless the fundamental issues are addressed, we will be here again. We will be here as long as is it takes until the Palestinian people are free.

‘We will never give up on the Palestinian people, we will never go away from the Palestinian people and their cause.’

Of Saturday’s demonstration, a PSC spokesman said the G7 included the ‘biggest suppliers of arms and military technology to the Israeli state, which are vital in enforcing Israel’s regime of oppression’.

Protesters carry placards reading 'free Palestine' as they take to the streets of London amid the crisis in Palestine

Protesters carry placards reading ‘free Palestine’ as they take to the streets of London amid the crisis in Palestine

Hundreds of demonstrators march through London as they stage a demonstration in support of Palestine

Hundreds of demonstrators march through London as they stage a demonstration in support of Palestine

A woman waves the Palestine flag as she joins hundreds of demonstrators across the Capital amid the crisis in Palestine

A woman waves the Palestine flag as she joins hundreds of demonstrators across the Capital amid the crisis in Palestine

A large flag was brought out and carried by protestors as they marched through central London

A large flag was brought out and carried by protestors as they marched through central London 

A woman waves the Palestinian flag as she's accompanied by children at the march through London

A woman waves the Palestinian flag as she’s accompanied by children at the march through London

Photographs show hundreds of protestors holding placards reading 'free Palestine' and 'sanctions on Israel'. Another read: 'Peace to a land that was created for peace but never saw a peaceful day'

Photographs show hundreds of protestors holding placards reading ‘free Palestine’ and ‘sanctions on Israel’. Another read: ‘Peace to a land that was created for peace but never saw a peaceful day’

Mr Corbyn stood up to give a speech at the event. Last month he spoke at a rally, saying: 'Children should not grow up having seen their home demolished by a bomb dropped from the safety of thousands of feet above'

Mr Corbyn stood up to give a speech at the event. Last month he spoke at a rally, saying: ‘Children should not grow up having seen their home demolished by a bomb dropped from the safety of thousands of feet above’

An interpreter offered a sign-language translation of Mr Corbyn's speech outside Number 10 earlier on Saturday

An interpreter offered a sign-language translation of Mr Corbyn’s speech outside Number 10 earlier on Saturday

An inflatable figure is pictured at a pro-Palestine demonstration outside Downing Street

An inflatable figure is pictured at a pro-Palestine demonstration outside Downing Street

It added: ‘The demonstration also follows a series of three emergency protests which took place in May in response to Israel’s escalation of its assaults against Palestinians across the region. 

‘These increased violations of Palestinian rights occurred in the context of more than 70 years of dispossession and ethnic cleansing, and the imposition of a system of rule that Human Rights Watch recently concurred amounts to the crime of apartheid.’ 

‘Convoy For Palestine‘ activists provided male and female segregated buses just weeks after a group bearing Palestinian flags drove through Finchley yelling ‘F*** the Jews, rape their daughters’. 

In a poster, the group told fellow activists they would be providing separate male and female coaches at £20 per person for the journey. 

The buses departed from Bradford and made stops in Sheffield and Leicester before arriving in the capital. Activists then joined forces to take part in the main protest outside Downing Street at 1pm.

The Metropolitan Police told MailOnline they were ‘aware of the planned convoy’ and added that they were currently ‘gathering intelligence’.

Mr Corbyn was pictured in a white shirt with a glasses case in his front pocket as he spoke to an organiser

Mr Corbyn was pictured in a white shirt with a glasses case in his front pocket as he spoke to an organiser

The former Labour leader was always vocal about his pro-Palestinian views while he was in opposition

The former Labour leader was always vocal about his pro-Palestinian views while he was in opposition

Mr Corbyn hugs a protestor despite coronavirus rules still enforcing social distancing

Mr Corbyn hugs a protestor despite coronavirus rules still enforcing social distancing 

Protestors chanted as they walked through the centre of London during the demonstration on Saturday

Protestors chanted as they walked through the centre of London during the demonstration on Saturday

It comes just weeks after four people were arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences after footage showed a pro-Palestinian group drive through a Jewish community in north London while the passengers screamed ‘f*** their mothers, f*** their daughters’. 

In a leaflet advertising the latest convoy, shared on Instagram, organisers said: ‘Join us on a convoy in support of standing up for the voiceless where we aim to bring every background, from every city within the UK together in solidarity for our brothers and sisters who have been oppressed for far too long.’    

Conservative MP for Finchley and Golders Green Mike Freer said the issue has been raised with the area’s Borough Commander, who will take ‘appropriate action’.

Mr Freer told the JC: ‘Reports of a planned repeat of last month’s convoy are extremely concerning.

‘The anti-Semitism on show that day was unacceptable. My constituents should not have to live in fear in their own homes and communities. Freedom of speech is not a freedom to intimidate.’  

Huge crowds gathered to protest in the capital last month, with a large police presence also enforced

Huge crowds gathered to protest in the capital last month, with a large police presence also enforced

At one point, footage appears to show a demonstrator seemingly deliberately landing on top of two counter-protestors

At one point, footage appears to show a demonstrator seemingly deliberately landing on top of two counter-protestors

Apparently jumping down from above the activist plants both feet on the back and neck of the two counter-protestors before being accosted by officers

Apparently jumping down from above the activist plants both feet on the back and neck of the two counter-protestors before being accosted by officers

Dave Rich, Director of Policy National at Community Security Trust, told MailOnline: ‘The practice of cars flying flags through Jewish neighbourhoods in London and elsewhere as a means of intimidation has become commonplace over the past month and it has to stop. 

‘The last time this particular convoy came to London it caused huge outrage and we have already received several calls about this weekend from Jewish people who are extremely alarmed and fearful. The impact on the Jewish community is enormously damaging and it would be better for all concerned if this convoy doesn’t happen.’ 

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police told MailOnline: ‘We are aware of the planned convoy and are gathering intelligence to ensure a proportionate policing plan is in place.’   

A Pro-Palestinian protestor holds a banner outside the Israeli Embassy in London as he awaits for a crowd of demonstrators to arrive

A Pro-Palestinian protestor holds a banner outside the Israeli Embassy in London as he awaits for a crowd of demonstrators to arrive

Last month, four men were arrested by on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences for shouting anti-Semitic abuse while driving through a Jewish community in Finchley, North London

Last month, four men were arrested by on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences for shouting anti-Semitic abuse while driving through a Jewish community in Finchley, North London

Last month, four men were arrested by on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences for shouting anti-Semitic abuse while driving through a Jewish community in Finchley, North London 

Police stepped up patrols at synagogues as a result of an incident last month, which saw four men arrested for shouting antisemitic abuse from a car – with Sadiq Khan saying there was ‘no excuse’ for racism. 

Onlookers were left horrified on May 16 after the passengers yelled: ‘F*** the Jews… F*** all of them. F*** their mothers, f*** their daughters and show your support for Palestine. 

‘Rape their daughters and we have to send a message like that. Please do it for the poor children in Gaza.’  

One of the men inside the car where the abuse was coming from had a shirt reading ‘Blackburn’. 

Mr Khan, who was recently re-elected as Mayor of London, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme at the time: ‘Many of us feel quite strongly about what’s happened in Israel and Gaza, what we can’t do is use that as an excuse for any kind of anti-Semitism or hate crime.’ 

The mayor said he has been in contact with the Metropolitan Police Commissioner and the Deputy Commissioner and there will be an increased police presence in Jewish communities, synagogues and schools with the aim of trying to make people feel safe, but also to alert ‘anybody who is involved in any race crimes that action will be taken’.

'Convoy For Palestine' activists planned a trip to London on Saturday in male and female segregated buses

‘Convoy For Palestine’ activists planned a trip to London on Saturday in male and female segregated buses 

He added: ‘It is important for us to realise the impact of this criminal behaviour has a ripple of fear effect on Jewish Londoners and those across the country. It is really important that we don’t bring conflicts 3,000 miles away to the capital city.’

The Community Security Trust, a charity that monitors the security of the Jewish community, said the car rally had travelled down to attend a protest about Israel’s ongoing military actions against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. 

In a separate demonstration last month, violence erupted when pro-Palestine activists clashed with police during a demonstration against the continued conflict in the Middle East.

Protestors waving flags, banners and placards, featuring messages including ‘Hands Off Jerusalem‘, took to the streets of the English capital to call for an end to the growing unrest.

Former Mr Corbyn was also in attendance, addressing thousands of demonstrators who gathered in the city.

But it is understood tensions flared when police attempted to escort away a small group of pro-Israel counter-protesters.

At one point, footage appeared to show a demonstrator seemingly deliberately landing on top of two counter-protesters.

Apparently jumping down from above the activist plants both feet on the back and neck of the two counter-protesters before being accosted by officers. 

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Tokyo Olympics: PM Boris Johnson rallies four Team GB athletes over video call

Tokyo Olympics: PM Boris Johnson rallies four Team GB athletes over video call
Tokyo Olympics: PM Boris Johnson rallies four Team GB athletes over video call

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Boris Johnson held a rousing video call with four of Team GB‘s athletes ahead of the start of the Olympics.

The Prime Minister spoke with gymnasts Max Whitlock and Joe Fraser, boxer Lauren Price and rower Karen Bennett from his Chequers residence.

Sources say the conversation was based around each athlete’s event and there was also talk of the success of the vaccination programme, and the assistance it has provided to Team GB’s travelling party.

Chef de Mission Mark England introduced the Thursday call, with the quartet talking to the Prime Minister from their 12-storey accommodation by the side of Tokyo Bay.

Mr Johnson was said to be in high spirits, and wished all of those about to represent the country well.

The Games start in earnest on Saturday, following Friday’s Opening Ceremony.

Tokyo Olympics: PM Boris Johnson rallies four Team GB athletes over video call

Prime Minister Boris Johnson looked to rally four Team GB athletes in Tokyo on a video call

Johnson (right) spoke to the four assembled Team GB athletes from his Chequers residence

Johnson (right) spoke to the four assembled Team GB athletes from his Chequers residence

Part of the conversation surrounded the success of the British vaccination programme

Part of the conversation surrounded the success of the British vaccination programme

Meanwhile, officials are growing increasingly concerned that Team GB’s ‘pinged’ athletes will have to remain in quarantine for 14 days.

The ‘Yokohama Six’ have been self-isolating since a passenger on their flight to Tokyo tested positive last week.

The group are permitted to train but have to lead a lonely existence in their hotel rooms, and steeplechaser Zak Seddon spoke out last week to say he was ‘struggling’ in isolation.

Despite producing more than 12 negative Covid tests, he has been largely confined to his room ‘bar a few socially-distanced hours a day’ while training.

Gymnastics medal hope Max Whitlock was among the four Team GB athletes on the call

Gymnastics medal hope Max Whitlock was among the four Team GB athletes on the call

Lauren Price is one of Team GB's boxing hopes at the Tokyo Games

Karen Bennett will compete in rowing for Team GB

Boxer Lauren Price (left) and rower Karen Bennett (right) were also on the PM’s video call

Exasperated British Olympic Association officials have been seeking urgent clarity from Tokyo 2020 bosses over when the group can return to a form of normality. And it is understood they remain frustrated and are facing the growing prospect that those affected – who can compete – will have to remain in isolation for 14 days.

BOA chairman Hugh Robertson acknowledged what is a tricky situation. ‘We’re working on it on an almost hourly basis,’ he said. 

‘To be completely honest, I’d be lying if I said we were making a whole lot of progress. 

‘I think where we have succeeded in the things we’ve managed to do – where some others haven’t – is to get a concession from the local authority in Yokohama that, even though they are in quarantine, they can actually train. 

‘There are athletes around the world who are just sitting in their hotel rooms. At least ours can get out. 

Six British athletes are in isolation after being 'pinged' due to being deemed a close contact

Six British athletes are in isolation after being ‘pinged’ due to being deemed a close contact

Steeplechaser Zak Seddon spoke out to say he was 'struggling' in quarantine and despite producing 11 negative Covid tests has been largely confined to isolation

Steeplechaser Zak Seddon spoke out to say he was ‘struggling’ in quarantine and despite producing 11 negative Covid tests has been largely confined to isolation

‘They can train. I know it’s rotten for them. It’s incredibly difficult, but at least they can get down to the stadium and train and spend a reasonable amount of the day down there.’

Robertson added that they were close to admitting defeat. 

‘In terms of getting the quarantine lifted, moving to a different system, we’re right up against it with that,’ he explained. 

‘We’ve tried the various committees, we’ve tried direct approaches, we’ve been at it through the International Olympic Committee. I’d be lying if I said at the moment that we’re very confident we’re gonna get a whole lot of movement. 

‘But at least they can train, and at least we have a roadmap to get them to the start line in order to compete at their events. It’s six of one, half a dozen the other. Some progress, but we’re not where we want them to be.’

Earlier this week, gold medal prospect Amber Hill suffered heartbreak when she tested positive ahead of her trip to Tokyo. And UK Sport chief executive Sally Munday said the devastated shooting favourite was being looked after.

British gold medal hope Amber Hill is out of the Olympics after a positive Covid test

British gold medal hope Amber Hill is out of the Olympics after a positive Covid test

She posted a black screen with word 'Broken' when she discovered her positive Covid-19 test

She posted a black screen with word ‘Broken’ when she discovered her positive Covid-19 test 

‘The number one priority for us is how we are taking care of Amber,’ she said. 

‘And how is the sport able to support her at what is absolutely a devastating time for her after the training that she’s done. The reaction for me, when I heard that news, it just kind of left me cold. 

‘The athletes have worked so hard for this, and the sports, the national governing bodies have done an incredible job over the last 18 months to enable the athletes to train. 

‘Our absolute number one priority, and all we’ve been thinking about to be honest, is how do we support her, to make sure that she’s okay? And how do we support them in making sure the wider team is not too negatively affected by that news, which must have been upsetting for everybody.’ 

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Top firms demand an end to pingdemic peril

Top firms demand an end to pingdemic peril
Top firms demand an end to pingdemic peril

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Business leaders today join the Mail’s rallying cry to Boris Johnson to save the UK from the paralysing effects of the pingdemic.

Companies and organisations representing thousands of businesses employing millions are demanding an end to the quarantine of the healthy.

They speak for hospitality, retail, food supplies, manufacturing and transport – the foundations of the economy.

The business leaders are getting behind the Mail’s letter to the Prime Minister, asking him urgently to bring forward plans to alter the rules on August 16, so those who are double-jabbed are exempt from quarantining as long as they take regular tests.

Ministers last night announced a move to keep the nation fed by setting up testing sites at 500 factories, warehouses and distribution centres so critical workers no longer need to isolate if they are pinged by the NHS Covid app.

But business leaders say the proposal won’t deal fully with the growing crisis, as Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng yesterday signalled the August 16 date could even be delayed.

Top firms demand an end to pingdemic peril

Business leaders today join the Mail’s rallying cry to Boris Johnson to save the UK from the paralysing effects of the pingdemic

Ministers last night announced a move to keep the nation fed by setting up testing sites at 500 factories, warehouses and distribution centres so critical workers no longer need to isolate if they are pinged by the NHS Covid app

Ministers last night announced a move to keep the nation fed by setting up testing sites at 500 factories, warehouses and distribution centres so critical workers no longer need to isolate if they are pinged by the NHS Covid app

More than 1.3million self-isolation alerts were sent last week. BLUE BARS show the number of 'pings' sent by the NHS app each week; RED BARS show the number of people contacted by Test and Trace call handlers; and YELLOW BARS show the number of people who tested positive for Covid

More than 1.3million self-isolation alerts were sent last week. BLUE BARS show the number of ‘pings’ sent by the NHS app each week; RED BARS show the number of people contacted by Test and Trace call handlers; and YELLOW BARS show the number of people who tested positive for Covid

New estimates suggest 2.1 million people could be forced into up to ten days of self-isolation by next week after being pinged by the app or contacted by NHS Test and Trace.

The vast majority have already been double-jabbed against the virus and will test negative for any infection.

This exodus of workers means there are gaps on supermarket shelves, particularly fresh produce, as an existing shortage of delivery drivers has been exacerbated by the impact of the app.

Food processors, car plants and other manufacturers are cutting production and shifts, threatening to paralyse the economy. Postal services are failing in many areas, while household bins are going uncollected, leaving rubbish to bake, creating a stink across our streets.

Police forces are taking longer to respond to 999 calls, while train services are suffering as staff are required to quarantine. There are also some concerns for petrol supplies.

Business leaders say it is bizarre to require healthy people who have been double-jabbed and tested negative to quarantine if identified as a Covid contact by the app or Test and Trace.

In other developments:

  • Ministers last night announced that employers in 16 sectors could apply for an exemption if a critical worker was pinged by the app;
  • The UK recorded 84 deaths and 39,906 cases of Covid-19, meaning cases are falling for the first time in two months;
  • More than a million alerts telling people to self-isolate were issued last week, including a record 618,903 ‘pings’ sent out via the Covid app;
  • Infections among those in their 20s soared to a record high, prompting calls for ministers to do more to get young adults jabbed;
  • Pregnant women were urged to get vaccinated as data showed just one in ten has come forward so far;
  • Tory MPs threatened to boycott the Conservative Party conference if they have to use vaccine passports to attend.

Signatories to the Mail’s letter include UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls, who said: ‘Hospitality is facing significant staffing challenges just as restrictions ease after 16 months, with as many as a fifth of staff in the sector isolating at any one time.

‘We urge the Government to move faster on this issue to reduce business disruption and prevent the summer being cancelled for our sector.’

There are increasing fears the app is losing public support, with one estimate suggesting usage is declining by 15 per cent a week.

Julian Metcalfe, founder of Itsu and Pret a Manger, said: ‘It’s almost impossible for anyone in business to navigate this chaos and confusion.

Data shows 600,000 alerts were sent by the NHS app in the week ending July 14, a 17 per cent rise increase on the previous seven days and another record high. The red line show the cumulative number of tracing alerts sent throughout the pandemic, while the blue bars represent the number each week

Data shows 600,000 alerts were sent by the NHS app in the week ending July 14, a 17 per cent rise increase on the previous seven days and another record high. The red line show the cumulative number of tracing alerts sent throughout the pandemic, while the blue bars represent the number each week

Infections were rising in England by about 67 per cent on June 30, for example, and at the same time the number of alerts sent to phones rose by 63 per cent. Even earlier this month ‘pings’ were rising in line with cases – infections rose by 48 per cent on July 7 while alerts jumped by 46 per cent. But by July 14, cases across England were rising at twice the rate of alerts – with a 34 per cent increase in infections compared to the 17 per cent rise in pings that reached phones

In total, when children sent home to isolate from school are included, there were up to 2.3million people told to quarantine last week - or 3 per cent of the entire population

 In total, when children sent home to isolate from school are included, there were up to 2.3million people told to quarantine last week – or 3 per cent of the entire population

‘I think the Mail’s campaign is a great idea: if you’re double-jabbed, let people use their common sense and make their own decisions.’

Wetherspoons founder Tim Martin said: ‘The vaccination programme has been a fantastic success. We now need pragmatic solutions, not indiscriminate pings from a failed IT system, which are rapidly driving the country into the rocks.’

Clive Watson, of the City Pub Group, said: ‘It’s one thing pubs not being able to open, but this is also affecting the haulage industry and supermarkets. If shops start running out of food, we’re all in the proverbial.’

Signatories from the transport sector include Karen Dee, chief executive of the Airport Operators Association, and John Holland-Kaye, the boss of Heathrow.

Rod McKenzie, of the Road Haulage Association, said: ‘The RHA strongly supports the lifting of the requirement for fully vaccinated lorry drivers to self-isolate if pinged.

‘The UK is facing a critical shortage of lorry drivers and the fact that many fit and healthy drivers are required to isolate is unfair and illogical.’

Bob Sanguinetti, chief executive of the UK Chamber of Shipping, said: ‘The pingdemic has caused issues for lifeline ferry services, offshore energy workers and others providing vital services.

‘Seafarers are key workers and it is paramount those that are double-vaccinated can continue doing their essential work without disruption.’

Dr Roger Barker, of the Institute of Directors, said: ‘The Government’s handling of the issue of self-isolation is in a complete mess.

‘The month-long disconnect between the lifting of restrictions and the ending of self-isolation is exacerbating existing staff shortages.’

FIRMS’ RALLYING CRY

‘Dear Prime Minister,

We believe the country’s current approach to self-isolation is closing down the economy rather than opening it up, and causing huge damage. Because of the “pingdemic”, businesses are at risk of grinding to a halt.

We believe people who have been double-vaccinated should be able to avoid having to self-isolate so they can carry on working. They would instead have regular tests.

The Government is already proposing this from August 16. We are simply asking them to bring forward the start date, with immediate effect.’

 

Signatories to the Mail’s campaign:

  • Association of Convenience Stores
  • British Beer & Pub Association
  • Federation of Wholesale Distributors
  • Tim Alderslade, CEO, Airlines UK
  • Steven Alton, chief executive, British Institute of Innkeeping
  • Richard Ballantyne, chief executive, British Ports Association
  • Roger Barker, policy director, Institute of Directors
  • Shane Brennan, chief executive, Cold Chain Federation
  • Charlie Cornish, chief executive, Manchester Airports Group
  • Karen Dee, chief executive, Airport Operators Association
  • Bernard Donoghue, director, Association of Leading Visitor Attractions
  • Andrew Flintham, managing director, Tui UK
  • Des Gunewardena, chairman and chief executive, D & D London
  • Jonathan Hinkles, chief executive, Loganair
  • John Holland-Kaye, chief executive, Heathrow Airport
  • Johan Lundgren, CEO, easyJet
  • Nick Mackenzie, chief executive, Greene King
  • Rod McKenzie, managing director of policy, Road Haulage Association
  • Tim Martin, founder and chairman, Wetherspoon
  • Julian Metcalfe, CEO of Itsu and founder of Pret a Manger
  • Charlie Mullins, founder and chief executive, Pimlico Plumbers
  • Kate Nicholls, CEO, UKHospitality
  • Bob Sanguinetti, chief executive, UK Chamber of Shipping
  • Sir Malcolm Walker, founder, Iceland
  • Richard Walker, managing director, Iceland
  • Clive Watson, executive chairman, City Pub Group
  • David Wells, chief executive, Logistics UK

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TOM UTLEY: PM’s touching letter to our old colleague

TOM UTLEY: PM’s touching letter to our old colleague
TOM UTLEY: PM’s touching letter to our old colleague

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As a victim of his own pingdemic, Boris Johnson was unable to join our small party of journalists, gathered on Monday to celebrate the 80th birthday of our revered former colleague, Simon Scott Plummer.

I’m not sure that he would have been able to come anyway, what with affairs of state pressing down on him from all sides.

But out of the goodness of his heart (a phrase not commonly applied to the Prime Minister, though I stand firmly by it), he did take the trouble to sit down and write a touching and very funny tribute to Simon, which was read out at the party.

I won’t quote it here, since it was full of office in-jokes, which only those of us who worked alongside Boris and Simon would fully understand.

But my point is that here was the busiest man in the country — with a pandemic on his plate, on top of all the usual cares of a head of government — still making the time to perform a small act of human kindness to an old workmate.

Extraordinary

As he surely realised, it’s one helluva thing to receive a message of friendship and praise from a Prime Minister on one’s 80th birthday — and that holds true, even if the PM in question is just good old Boris, who in the old days had something of a reputation as the office clown.

I’ll bet that Simon was extremely chuffed, as I certainly would have been were I in his shoes.

Indeed, Boris’s message put me in mind of Margaret Thatcher’s extraordinary thoughtfulness to my mother on the day that my father died.

As I’ve recounted here before, the Iron Lady was at a G7 summit in Toronto on that sad day, sorting out the woes of the world with the likes of Ronald Reagan of the U.S., Helmut Kohl of Germany, Francois Mitterrand of France, Jacques Delors of the European Commission and the then Japanese Prime Minister, Noboru Takeshita.

TOM UTLEY: PM’s touching letter to our old colleague

As a victim of his own pingdemic, Boris Johnson was unable to join our small party of journalists, gathered on Monday to celebrate the 80th birthday of our revered former colleague, Simon Scott Plummer

Yet before she went to bed that night, she sat down and hand-wrote a deeply moving, five-page letter to my mother — whom she had met only very occasionally — extolling my father’s genius and offering her sympathy and prayers.

It was delivered to our London flat the following morning in the diplomatic bag.

This was a huge consolation to my mother in her sudden widowhood.

We all knew, in our family and among his friends and colleagues, that my blind father was a great man. But to have it confirmed by the Prime Minister, in her own hand on the day of his death, was more comforting than I can express.

Her tribute showed that his life, as a profound Tory thinker and a strong influence on what came to be known as Thatcherism, really amounted to something in this world. It was to be celebrated to the skies, just as his early death at 67 was to be mourned.

It was not even as if my father, who had helped Mrs T with some of her speeches, was much of a celebrity. The bulk of his work as a journalist was written anonymously, and he exercised his political influence behind the scenes.

There were no votes to be had from writing so kindly to my mother. It was an act of goodness and fellow-feeling, pure and simple — one of a great many she performed on the quiet to even the lowliest people around her.

I certainly mean no disrespect to Simon Scott Plummer when I say that he is not very famous either (hands up who has heard of him? I thought not).

Like my late father, he has never courted the limelight, writing most of his work unsigned.

He has other qualities in common with my father, too.

As anyone who has met him will testify, he is the perfect gentleman — unfailingly civil and generous to everyone, high and low — a man of great erudition, modesty and wisdom and a truly breathtaking range of knowledge in his specialist field (foreign affairs).

Indeed, I would say that in some respects Simon is the polar opposite of the current Prime Minister — that consummate showman with the rackety private life, boundless ambition and, as many of us often feel, only a tenuous grasp of detail.

But though his enemies may disagree, I reckon it reflects enormous credit on Boris that he recognises the worth of a character so different from his own. Inside that blustering, facetious, bad-boy exterior, there’s a good man struggling to get out.

Cynicism

Yes, I know cynics will chorus that of course Boris showed kindness to Simon, since he knew that a whole lot of journalists would be at that birthday party, and there was a fair chance that his good deed would end up in the Press.

To them, I can reply only that his conduct towards Simon was consistent with so many other stories I’ve heard about Boris — many of which were highly unlikely to be reported. That they’re pushing cynicism too far.

Take the day when, as Mayor of London, he was driving through the capital with David Cameron, who was then Prime Minister, and saw a woman collapsing by the side of the road. It was he who asked the driver to stop and leapt out to offer what help he could.

As a Special Branch minder called an ambulance, the woman came round from her faint — only to see the Prime Minister and the Mayor of London leaning solicitously over her. As my informant puts it: ‘She almost had a heart attack!’

Or take the night he took the Jubilee Line home after appearing on Question Time, broadcast from Stratford, only to be accosted by a passenger who was clearly the worse for wear. Let’s call him Rob.

Boris¿s message to Simon put me in mind of Margaret Thatcher¿s extraordinary thoughtfulness to my mother on the day that my father died. As I¿ve recounted here before, the Iron Lady was at a G7 summit in Toronto on that sad day, yet before she went to bed that night, she sat down and hand-wrote a deeply moving, five-page letter to my mother

Boris’s message to Simon put me in mind of Margaret Thatcher’s extraordinary thoughtfulness to my mother on the day that my father died. As I’ve recounted here before, the Iron Lady was at a G7 summit in Toronto on that sad day, yet before she went to bed that night, she sat down and hand-wrote a deeply moving, five-page letter to my mother

‘Oi! Boris!’ said Rob. ‘Because of you, I’m about to get the sack! I’m always late for work because your bloody Jubilee Line never runs on time.’

Instead of fobbing him off, Boris borrowed his iPhone and recorded a video for his boss, saying: ‘I’m sitting here with Rob, who says you’re going to sack him because his train is always late.

‘Look, it’s true that we’ve been having trouble with the Jubilee Line, but I’m working hard to put it right. If I fail, you have my permission to sack Rob, but please give us both a chance!’ Pure goodness.

Of course, Boris himself is notorious for being late for meetings. But one of the reasons for this is that he seldom says no to bystanders’ requests for a selfie, and almost invariably stops for a chat.

As he confided to an aide: ‘It’s a small thing for me to do, but for them it could be the biggest thing that’s happened for ages.’

Mastery

Or take his preference for lunching in the canteen during his days at the Foreign Office, while his grander mandarins dispersed to clubland.

As a secretary reported to a friend, she always felt perfectly at ease with him, knowing she could introduce him to anyone from a cleaner to a diplomat and he’d treat them all as his equal.

Now, I’m not saying for one moment that Boris’s gift for getting on with ordinary people necessarily qualifies him to be Prime Minister.

Indeed, I’ve often wished that he had other qualities in common with Margaret Thatcher, from her diligence and mastery of detail to her courage in risking unpopularity when she felt the public interest demanded it. Boris’s hunger to be loved can often be a real handicap.

But I do believe his life-enhancing connection with the public, from all walks of life, is the key to his resilient popularity.

And as for me, I don’t have a pandemic to handle, nor any tricky negotiations with the EU over Northern Ireland and Gibraltar. Nor do I have to sort out the social care crisis or the housing shortage. Nor, come to that, do I have a new wife to keep sweet, or a baby yowling through the night.

On the contrary, since my semi-retirement I’ve spent six days a week in blissful idleness, with nothing more arduous to do than walk the dog. Yet I’m deeply ashamed to admit that when I was asked to write a few lines to celebrate Simon Scott Plummer’s 80th, I never quite got round to it.

Though it pains me to say it, Boris is a much better man than me.

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Labour MP Dawn Butler barred from Commons for ‘liar’ rant  

Labour MP Dawn Butler barred from Commons for ‘liar’ rant  
Labour MP Dawn Butler barred from Commons for ‘liar’ rant  

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Labour MP Dawn Butler is barred from the House of Commons chamber for accusing Boris Johnson of ‘lying’ about Covid and making ‘poor people pay with their lives’

  • Labour MP Dawn Butler launched a rant at the PM during a Commons debate
  • The politician repeatedly branded Boris Johnson ‘liar’ and refused to withdraw
  • She was then ordered to leave the chamber by the stand-in deputy Speaker 

A Labour MP was dramatically barred from the Commons chamber this afternoon after repeatedly branding Boris Johnson a ‘liar’.

Dawn Butler was told to leave by the chair after delivering an extraordinary rant about how ‘poor people have paid with their lives’ because of the PM ‘misleading the House’. 

She accused Mr Johnson of lying over his claim that the UK has ‘severed the link between [Covid] infection and serious disease and death’.

The former frontbencher was asked to withdraw her remarks – which flouted parliamentary etiquette rules – by fellow Labour MP Judith Cummins, who was presiding over the session.

But she flatly refused to do so, insisting she had thought about it and still felt the same way. It forced the temporary Deputy Speaker to eject her –  and she will also lose a day’s pay.

Labour MP Dawn Butler barred from Commons for ‘liar’ rant  

Dawn Butler was told to leave by the chair after delivering an extraordinary rant about how ‘poor people have paid with their lives’ because of the PM ‘misleading the House’

The Brent Central MP mounted the protest during an education debate in the chamber today

The Brent Central MP mounted the protest during an education debate in the chamber today

Ms Butler was asked to withdraw her remarks - which flouted parliamentary etiquette rules - by fellow Labour MP Judith Cummins (pictured), who was presiding over the session

Ms Butler was asked to withdraw her remarks – which flouted parliamentary etiquette rules – by fellow Labour MP Judith Cummins (pictured), who was presiding over the session

The Brent Central MP mounted the protest during a general debate before the Commons went into recess.

‘Poor people in our country have paid with their lives because the Prime Minister has spent the last 18 months misleading this House and the country over and over again,’ Ms Butler said.

During PMQ’s on July 7, Mr Johnson said: ‘Scientists are absolutely clear that we have severed the link between [Covid] infection and serious disease and death.’

Ms Butler highlighted the disputed claim made by the Prime Minister, saying: ‘Not only is this not true Madam Deputy Speaker but it is dangerous, and it’s dangerous to lie in a pandemic.’

She added: ‘I am disappointed the Prime Minister has not come to the House to correct the record and correct the fact that he has lied to this House and the country over and over again.’

Ms Cummins intervened and said: ‘Order! Order! I’m sure that the member will reflect on her words she’s saying and perhaps correct the record.’ 

Ms Butler - known as 'Red Dawn' for her left-wing views - stalked out of the chamber after pulling her stunt this afternoon

Ms Butler – known as ‘Red Dawn’ for her left-wing views – stalked out of the chamber after pulling her stunt this afternoon

Ms Butler replied: ‘What would you rather – a weakened leg or a severed leg? At the end of the day the Prime Minister has lied to this House time and time again. 

‘It’s funny that we get in trouble in this place for calling out the lie rather than the person lying.’

Ms Cummins intervened again and urged Ms Butler to ‘reflect’ on her words and withdraw them.

Ms Butler replied: ‘I’ve reflected on my words and somebody needs to tell the truth in this House that the Prime Minister has lied.’

Ms Cummins then read out a statement in which she ordered Ms Butler to ‘withdraw immediately from the House for the remainder of the day’s sitting’.

Ms Butler left her seat and exited the chamber.

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Keir Starmer calls Boris Johnson and Tories ‘party of crime and disorder’

Keir Starmer calls Boris Johnson and Tories ‘party of crime and disorder’
Keir Starmer calls Boris Johnson and Tories ‘party of crime and disorder’

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Keir Starmer channels Tony Blair vowing to be tough on ’causes’ of crime as he tries to revive Labour’s fortunes by taking on Tories over law and order

  • Starmer called Tories the ‘party of crime and disorder’ 
  • A Labour analysis found police budgets down significantly over 10 years, but the Home Office released findings showing an inflation-adjusted 0.1% increase
  • Sir Keir echoes Tony Blair, who promised to be ‘tough on crime’ 
  • Labour leader decried knife attacks, high levels of unsolved crime

Eyes on 2024, Sir Keir Starmer echoed former Labour PM Tony Blair in promising a tough-on-crime approach if his party is elected, and branded Conservatives the ‘party of crime and disorder’.

Sir Keir pointed to a Labour analysis that found police budgets are down £1.6 billion from 2010, when Boris Johnson’s party seized power. He said that from 2010 to 2020, the UK had lost 14,500 officers on the frontline.

‘The Conservatives have become the party of crime and disorder. Labour would do things very differently,’ Starmer wrote in an op-ed published Wednesday night in the Independent, where he announced a new Labour campaign for safer communities.

He accused government ministers of being ‘contortionists’ who twist figures to make the police budget look like it’s grown.

Keir Starmer calls Boris Johnson and Tories ‘party of crime and disorder’

Boris Johnson last month touted recruiting 'record numbers' of new officers

Sir Keir called out the PM and conservatives for depleting the police budget, according to a Labour analysis

Mr Johnson pledged in 2019 to recruit 20,000 new police officers. Last month, he touted ‘record numbers’ of new recruits. 

Findings released by the Home Office last month showed that police funding for fiscal year 2021-2022 increased by £433m, or 2.8 per cent, over the previous year. The total figure was up 0.1 per cent from 2010-2011 when adjusted for inflation, according to the findings. 

Starmer’s party compiled figures from all 43 forces back to 2010 to find total funding down 10.5 per cent, or £1.6bn, according to the Independent.

‘The Conservative Party cut our police to the lowest level in a generation. It’s no coincidence that was followed by rising antisocial behaviour, record levels of knife crime, and almost nine in 10 crimes going unsolved’, Sir Keir said.

He promised to divert funding from Mr Johnson’s plans for a ‘pointless’ national yacht and divert the reported £200m to tackle anti-social behaviour.

Starmer touted his own former role as the nation’s chief prosecutor. ‘I spent five years as this country’s chief prosecutor. I know what it takes to get criminals off the streets and get victims the justice they deserve.’

Sir Keir’s remarks call to mind those of Mr. Blair, who promised to be ‘tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime’.

Tony Blair touted a tough-on-crime approach as Labour leader

Tony Blair touted a tough-on-crime approach as Labour leader 

 Sir Keir noted an ‘epidemic of violence against women and girls.’ ‘More than 98 per cent of reported rape cases don’t result in a charge. Let that sink in,’ he said.

‘Too many people feel unsafe in their own communities. Antisocial behaviour has skyrocketed. A generation of young people is growing up with their local youth clubs closed and their youth workers lost – vital positive role models that help divert people from the grips of crime,’ Starmer continued.

‘Police across the country are warning that we face a summer of violence. We cannot ignore the fact that pent up tension among young people, many of whom have gone unsupported for 18 months, could have tragic consequences.’

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Covid vaccine passports WILL be required to get into Tory conference

Covid vaccine passports WILL be required to get into Tory conference
Covid vaccine passports WILL be required to get into Tory conference

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Covid passports will be required a Conservative Party conference despite rebel MPs threatening to boycott the event, it can be revealed today.

Tory insiders told MailOnline that proof people are double-jabbed is set to be required at the gathering in Manchester in October.

The system is expected to be used even if the law has not been changed to make vaccine passports compulsory at major events and nightclubs – as Boris Johnson has warned could happen in September.

The move is likely to spark more fury from Tory MPs, who have been vowing to revolt against the measures if they are brought to a vote in the Commons. 

A senior Tory source said: ‘We are the governing party – we will have to obey the guidance. 

‘Even if it is not the law, we will still need to do what the government is recommending for major events.’ 

The insider dismissed the concerns from Tory backbenchers – believed to be shared by some in Cabinet – pointing out that the public’s view was rather different.

‘Some MPs might not like it, but all the polling suggests the public are quite strongly in favour of Covid passports,’ they said. 

‘That looks to be truer for the older generations who are more at risk, and might be wanting to come along.’  

Covid vaccine passports WILL be required to get into Tory conference

Covid passports will be required a Conservative Party conference despite rebel MPs threatening to boycott the event. Pictured, Boris Johnson addressing the last in-person conference in Manchester in 2019

Tory insiders told MailOnline that proof people are double-jabbed is set to be required at the gathering in Manchester in October. Pictured, activists queue at the event in 2019

Tory insiders told MailOnline that proof people are double-jabbed is set to be required at the gathering in Manchester in October. Pictured, activists queue at the event in 2019

Mr Johnson (pictured in self-isolation yesterday) announced this week that proof of double vaccination will be a 'condition of entry' to nightclubs and other busy venues from September

Mr Johnson (pictured in self-isolation yesterday) announced this week that proof of double vaccination will be a ‘condition of entry’ to nightclubs and other busy venues from September

Conservative Party conference was reduced to a ‘virtual’ event last year, with ministers giving speeches into camera and online discussion forums.

However, it is due to be ‘hybrid’ this year after almost all legal restrictions were axed on July 19.

Members, journalists and politicians will gather in Manchester, but there will also be extensive access on a virtual platform. 

The Government announced this week that proof of double vaccination will be a ‘condition of entry’ to nightclubs and other busy venues from September.

But a senior Labour source said ministers should require a negative test instead – as even the fully-vaccinated can spread coronavirus.

‘For nightclubs, sporting events or whatever it may be, a negative test is worth more than being double-jabbed,’ the source said.

Cabinet ministers are also critical of the plan, with one questioning whether it was being floated just to encourage young people to get the jab. 

They said it would be unnecessary if 85 per cent of young people are jabbed by September.

‘I don’t know if it will actually ever happen. There are no advocates of policy,’ one minister said.

One prominent Tory rebel told the Telegraph of the idea that vacccine passports at conference: ‘If he does, then I suspect significant numbers of Conservative MPs and activists will refuse to attend.’

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng suggested this morning that any vote would be ‘general’ on the ‘concept’ of Covid passports, rather than on the detail of where they apply.   

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: ‘You can never predict parliamentary votes but we’ve got a majority of 80 and I’m very confident we can pass the legislation we require.

‘I don’t know what the proposed vote will be, you can never tell what the actual vote in the House of Commons in terms of the wording and what the position is.

‘It might just be a general vote on the concept, even, of vaccine passports, these votes can take any form that you can imagine.

‘If the vote does occur, I’m confident the Government will preserve a majority.’

The controversial plan was raised at a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, where support is thought to have been thin.

Some ministers also fear that the passports could be extended to pubs – something Boris Johnson has failed to rule out. 

Downing Street yesterday could not provide any examples where venues had voluntarily used Covid passports outside of trials.

The Prime Minister’s spokesman said that ‘a number of nightclubs and other settings’ used them during pilot events, and stressed it was ‘socially responsible’ for businesses to use them. 

But pushed on whether there was evidence they were being used, he added: ‘I don’t have specific numbers for you on who is or isn’t using it at the moment, it will be required by law by September.’

Labour (pictured, leader Keir Starmer) has signalled that it could join Tory rebels in voting against vaccine passports

Labour (pictured, leader Keir Starmer) has signalled that it could join Tory rebels in voting against vaccine passports

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng suggested this morning that any vote would be 'general' on the 'concept' of Covid passports, rather than on the detail of where they apply

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng suggested this morning that any vote would be ‘general’ on the ‘concept’ of Covid passports, rather than on the detail of where they apply

The requirement for Covid passports to enter venues in England will need a change in the law, which more than 40 MPs have already vowed to oppose.

With Labour support, the Tory rebels could defeat the Government’s 80-strong majority in a Commons vote.

Nightclub owners have also criticised the plan, which was announced on Monday – the day England’s clubs were allowed to open for the first time since March last year.

It came only a week after ministers said while they encouraged nightclubs and crowded venues to use the NHS Covid Pass it would not be compulsory. 

The Government had previously insisted proof of a negative test would be part of the Covid passport – ensuring those who decided not to be vaccinated or who medically were unable to have the jab were not discriminated against. 

A spokesman for Sir Keir Starmer said: ‘We oppose the use of Covid vaccination status for everyday access to venues and services. It’s costly, open to fraud and is impractical.’

Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman Alistair Carmichael said: ‘We need a united front against these illiberal and unworkable proposals and a national campaign through the summer to convince the Government to change course.’

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