Corbyn faces formal complaint over wreath-laying

“Jeremy Corbyn yesterday refused to apologise to the families of the Munich Massacre victims for joining a ceremony where terror leaders linked to their killings were honoured. Anti-Semitism campaigners last night said they were preparing to file a formal complaint to the Labour Party over his attendance at the memorial. The Labour leader yesterday sighed and rolled his eyes as he faced questions about pictures showing him holding a wreath by the graves of members of Black September, the terror group that massacred 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics. In his latest attempt to explain himself, he said there were ‘many people laying many wreaths’ during the visit to a cemetery in Tunisia where Palestinian ‘martyrs’ are buried… However, the Daily Mail today presents further evidence that he was by the graves of men accused of being behind the Munich Massacre when he was pictured holding a wreath and in an apparent prayer position.” – Daily Mail

  • Probe into why Labour leader failed to declare controversial trip – The Times
  • Mystery over who paid for Corbyn to visit Tunisia – The Sun
  • Speakers peddled hate at 2014 event – Daily Mail


  • Corbyn slammed for salute linked to Islamist group – The Sun
  • Williamson ‘can’t’ answer question about wreath-laying ceremony – Daily Express
  • Ally sparks fury with claim that Munich murderers were only ‘alleged’ terrorists – The Sun
  • Jewish groups to pile on pressure with Manchester rally – The Sun

Michael Foster: I’m a Jewish Labour donor and stood to be an MP. But if Corbyn becomes Prime Minister, I’ll have to leave Britain

“Their claim, of course, is that Jews care nothing about the plight of Palestinians and we use our Jewishness as a means of defending Israel. They judge us on our race alone. This is simple racism, and they are condemned from their own mouths. Anti-Semites are blinkered, ignorant, old-fashioned barbarians. For his part, Jeremy Corbyn is educated, rational, thoughtful and in many ways kind. But he is without a doubt also an irrational and hateful bigot. What surprises me is not that the Daily Mail has found photographic proof that Jeremy Corbyn held a wreath at the graves of those responsible for the slaughter of Israeli Olympians. It is more shocking that it did not come as a shock to anyone in Labour or anyone who knows him.” – Daily Mail

  • Corbyn is no peace broker, but a revolutionary who fraternises with fanatics – Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
  • Labour frustrating mounts as the wreath row drags on – Heather Stewart, The Guardian
  • Hard to hold the Labour leader to account when his spin doctors won’t answer our questions – Kate McCann, Daily Telegraph
  • This ‘scandal’ is just an exercise in hypocrisy – Owen Jones, The Guardian

Road outside Parliament ‘could be permanently closed’

“The road outside Parliament could be closed permanently to prevent further terrorist attacks on Westminster. The proposal to bar traffic from Abingdon Street would build on enhanced security measures already in place. Parliamentary authorities are currently in talks with the Home Office and Mayor of London about a feasibility study for the plan. Security minister Ben Wallace yesterday confirmed the Government has committed to help fund the £5million study. The approach is seen as a more realistic measure than closing down the entirety of Parliament Square, which is a major arterial route. Work on the plans began before the murder of PC Keith Palmer, who was stabbed to death in March last year by Khalid Masood outside the Palace of Westminster.” – Daily Mail

  • Security barriers are adding to danger, campaigners warn – The Times
  • May says the UK is under ‘severe’ threat – Daily Telegraph
  • Corbyn can never claim moral authority to condemn terrorism, claims Hunt – Daily Express
  • Britain faces 700 live terror probes – Daily Mail


  • Terrorists in Britain are at their weakest for years, but we must hand them no easy victories – Raffaello Pantucci, Daily Telegraph

>Today: ToryDiary: Terror and Westminster. There is no way of designing out risk.

May promises ‘new generation of council houses’

“After almost two decades of Britain not building enough council houses, Theresa May has promised the country will get construction “back to the scale that will deliver a real difference”. In the foreword to a social housing green paper published on Tuesday, the prime minister promised “a new generation of council homes to help fix our broken housing market”. But councils and housing associations, which have built the majority of the country’s low-cost social houses in recent decades, remain sceptical that the new measures go far enough to enable them to deliver on Mrs May’s promise… Proposed reforms include changes to the Right to Buy scheme, one of the flagship housing policies of former Conservative prime minister Margaret Thatcher, which is disliked by town halls.” – FT

  • Prime Minister hits back as Johnson calls for action on housing – Daily Express
  • Buying shared-ownership council homes to be made easier – FT


Hunt urges Commission to change tactics to avoid a no-deal Brexit

“Jeremy Hunt has called for the European Commission to change its approach to Brexit, suggesting that Brussels’ intransigence was increasing the prospect of a chaotic departure from the European Union. Speaking in Finland the foreign secretary reiterated his warning that the chances of the talks collapsing had increased. The EU should make the most of the “strategic choices” over negotiations to create a deal that benefits its 27 member states and Britain, he said… Brexit talks in Brussels are due to resume this week at an official level before meetings between Michel Barnier, the chief EU negotiator, and the Brexit secretary, Dominic Raab.” – The Times

  • Foreign Secretary steps up lobbying for Chequers proposals – FT
  • Merkel hopes ‘negotiated’ deal can be agreed – The Sun
  • British expats in the EU launch legal challenge to Brexit – The Guardian


  • Fewer migrants head to UK as Brexit looms – Philip Aldrick, The Times
  • Brexit will ruin the lives of British citizens in Europe, we deserve a vote – Jane Golding, The Guardian

>Today: Peter Lilley in Comment: Dear Agony Aunt – our friend Theresa has a problem with Michel. Can you help?

Grayling promises steps to stop rail fares rocketing

“The Transport Secretary will today attempt to stave off a backlash over crippling rail fare increases by announcing plans to curb them in future. Amid growing calls to freeze rail fares after the recent timetable shambles, Chris Grayling has gone on the offensive over inflation-busting pay rises in the industry. In a letter to union bosses and the rail industry, Mr Grayling outlined plans to cut the link between annual rail fare rises and the widely discredited Retail Price Index (RPI) measure of annual inflation. The aim is to switch to the more realistic Consumer Prices Index (CPI) measure, which is typically around one percentage point lower. Mr Grayling said the Government is already planning to switch to this measure next year for costs it does control – such as the amount it charges rail operators to use the tracks.” – Daily Mail

  • Transport Secretary blames unions for price hikes – Daily Telegraph
  • Rail workers facing cap on pay rises – The Times
  • Train operators need RPI fare rises, analysts claim – FT

Tories attack SNP over school vacancies

More than 200 Scottish schools have vacancies for teachers and classroom support staff as pupils return after the summer holidays, according to figures  that disclosed the full scale of their recruitment crisis. The Scottish Tories unveiled research showing 231 schools are advertising for staff, including some that have multiple vacancies. This means nearly one in ten schools will start the 2018/19 academic year this month trying to plug holes in their teaching or support workforce. Among the vacancies are for four headteachers at primary schools in Edinburgh. English and maths teachers in particular appear to be in short supply across the country. In the Perthshire constituency of John Swinney, the Education Minister, Perth Grammar is searching for a maths teacher.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Nationalists dither as pass rates fall – Ruth Davidson MSP, The Scotsman

>Today: John Bald in Local Government: It’s time to boost the Further Education sector

>Yesterday: Luke Evetts in Comment: We need a radical and robust review of how the Welsh Conservative Party is run

Brown claims child poverty is creating an ‘invisible generation’

Lack of action to tackle child poverty is creating “a generation of invisible boys and girls”, according to former prime minister Gordon Brown. He accused both the Scottish and UK governments of ignoring what he described as “a national disgrace”, and called for increases in welfare payments to address the issue. The number of children living in poverty is set to increase to 5.2 million by 2022, up from around four million at present, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS). Meanwhile a separate report commissioned by the Scottish Government and published in April shows a sharp rise in child poverty north of the border, with a projected increase of more than 100,000 by the mid 2020s.” – Daily Telegraph

MPs warn that UK must do more to defend Arctic interests from Russia

“Britain must step up its defence of the Arctic to counter increased Russian military activity, MPs have warned. The Kremlin is boosting its presence in the territory and could prompt a return to “great power competition” over it, the defence sub-committee said in a report, On Thin Ice: UK Defence in the Arctic, published today. The shrinking of the ice sheet has opened up new opportunities for shipping and the exploitation of natural resources in the Arctic, and several south and east Asian countries now claim an interest in the region. Russia has increased its military activity there, having constructed and reactivated bases along its Arctic coastline and on its islands on the edge of the Arctic Ocean. It has also built up heavily armed forces near the borders of neighbouring states and installed long-range missile and air defence systems.” – The Times

  • If the EU thinks it doesn’t need Britain on defence, we should pivot to America – Graeme Lamb, Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • Who should pay for the railways? – James Price, CapX
  • Adams’ reinvention as a kindly uncle figure is insulting – Owen Polley, Reaction
  • How Corbyn’s opponents made it easier for him to dodge scrutiny – Isabel Hardman, The Spectator
  • Beware the “unfair trade” trap in any Brexit deal – Simon Lester, Brexit Central
  • Musk is wrong – we do need killer robots – Mike Martin, UnHerd