One tweet from a Tory Senedd member reveals a more sinister agenda in Wales

Support us and go ad-freeOn Saturday 7 August, the Welsh government moved the country to “alert level 0”. This removes several legal restrictions in place because of coronavirus (Covid-19). It means there are now no restrictions on the number of people who can meet indoors or at public events in Wales. Additionally, businesses and nightclubs can reopen. Despite these changes giving Welsh people greater freedom of movement, first minister Mark Drakeford refused to follow prime minister Boris Johnson’s example and call 7 August “Freedom Day”. Because, according to Drakeford: We don’t use that language here in Wales because it’s not all over. Hundreds of people every day are…

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This Tory MP believes we need to invade Afghanistan. Again.

Support us and go ad-freeUK military forces must return to Afghanistan, a Tory MP has said. Tobias Ellwood insisted that only a new deployment could stop a potential civil war. In recent weeks, the Taliban has made massive gains in the territory. This has led to fears the country could end up back under its control. Airstrikes against the Taliban were underway on Thursday 5 August. But the same report suggested that more and more territory is falling to the insurgent group regardless. Ex-army officer Ellwood also tweeted that a coalition force of 5,000 could prop up the current government. And he warned the other option was a…

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Tory government under fire for years-long delay in enforcing ivory trade ban

Support us and go ad-freeThe UK government proudly announced that one of “the world’s toughest bans on ivory sales” had become law in December 2018. It described the ban in the Ivory Act as “world-leading”. But two and a half years later, the act still hasn’t come into force. A group of NGOs recently wrote to the government over the unjustifiable delay. As they point out, other countries have since taken steps “to introduce domestic ivory trade bans”. So, rather than being a ‘world leader’ on the matter, the UK now risks lagging behind others in cracking down on the trade. The wrong kind of world leader The…

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Tory amnesty proposals are ‘a retrospective licence to kill’

Support us and go ad-freeJustice campaigners have warned that a proposed statute of limitations would let soldiers who killed civilians escape justice. The Pat Finucane Centre (PFC) said new plans proposed on Wednesday 14 July were a retrospective “licence to kill”. PFC tweeted: PFC & JFF represent over 230 families bereaved north and south of the border. The proposals outlined by Brandon Lewis MP on not dealing with legacy represent a retrospective ‘license to kill’ for the British Army and RUC. This is not about ‘all sides’. Statute of limitations? Northern Ireland secretary Brandon Lewis set out the proposals on 14 July. In a Commons speech, he argued…

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Tory MP forced to apologise for her comment about Marcus Rashford

Support us and go ad-freeA Tory MP has had to apologise after suggesting that Marcus Rashford should have spent more time “perfecting his game” than “playing politics”. Natalie Elphicke made the comment in a message to fellow MPs after the footballer missed a penalty in the Euro 2020 final on Sunday night. Last night I shared the frustration and heartbreak of millions of England fans. The team gave their all. Congratulations and onwards to the World Cup! https://t.co/xKK7RjgOKn — Natalie Elphicke MP (@NatalieElphicke) July 12, 2021 Marcus Rashford His failure to convert from the spot – along with misses from Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka – consigned England…

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Poorest schools suffered funding cut under Tory reforms says watchdog

Support us and go ad-freeGovernment efforts to “level up” funding for education have resulted in cuts to the money going to the most deprived schools, the Whitehall spending watchdog has found. Levelling down The National Audit Office (NAO) said since the introduction of a national funding formula for England there had been a “relative redistribution” of resources to schools in better-off areas. In contrast, it said, almost 60% of the most deprived fifth of schools had seen a real terms reduction in government funding since 2017-18. While schools in poorer areas continue to receive more support than those in better-off parts of the country, the NAO said the…

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A top Tory wants people to stop calling Matt ‘hopeless’ Hancock ‘hopeless’

Support us and go ad-freeThe justice secretary has criticised calling Matt Hancock “hopeless”. It comes after Dominic Cummings revealed Boris Johnson’s damning messages about the health secretary. “Hopeless” Hancock Robert Buckland said on 20 June that “to bandy around words like that” does “nobody any service at all”. And he insisted Hancock commands the government’s “full support”. Cummings was the prime minister’s chief aide until he walked out of Downing Street in November. He revealed a series of WhatsApp messages between himself and Boris Johnson as he continued their war of words. One exchange included Johnson describing Hancock as “totally fucking hopeless” while discussing testing early in the…

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Boris Johnson faces Tory revolt over aid cuts

Boris Johnson faces a damaging revolt by dozens of senior Tories over his decision to cut the UK’s overseas aid spending. Theresa May, Andrew Mitchell and David Davis are among around 30 Conservative rebels backing a move to reverse the decision to cut aid spending from the legally-enshrined 0.7% of national income. Johnson slashed aid spending to 0.5% as the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic hit the economy. Ministers have insisted it’s only a temporary measure until the nation’s finances are repaired. But the 0.7% target is written into law. And maintaining it was a Tory manifesto commitment in 2019. Former international development secretary Andrew Mitchell is leading the rebellion…

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Ecologist gets greenlight to take Tory government to court amid its ongoing massacre of badgers

The Tory government announced that badger killing will go on for five more years in England on 27 May. The Badger Trust estimates that the government’s plan will cost a further 140,000 badgers their lives, on top of the 140,000 already killed. The latest window for the killing opened on 1 June, for which the government issued ten new licences in addition to reauthorising ten existing ones. That means badger cubs may well be slaughtered in the coming weeks, or they could be left motherless at a time when they’re still reliant on her. As always, concerned and proactive members of the public will be doing all they…

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