Jeremy Corbyn has confirmed that if he was Prime Minister he would not use nuclear weapons, regardless of what any future Labour Cabinet wanted.
Speaking to BBC’s Today Programme Corbyn said:
“We are not in the era of the Cold War any more; it finished a long time ago. We are having a review of defence policy as a whole. Trident will be included in that. My view is very, very clear. I put it very clearly out there during the leadership election”.
Corbyn also confirmed that he would not press the ‘nuclear button’ to defend the United Kingdom. He added that he wanted a nuclear weapons free world and this was his aim.
British citizens who fight for ISIL in Syria may face United Nations (UN) sanctions for the first time. The move comes under UN Resolution 2178 which requires countries to ensure that foreign fighters are held accountable for any crimes which they might commit.
The British Government has requested that a number of citizens are added to the sanctions regime list operated by the UN which could mean that their assets are seized and that they are blocked from travelling.
The UN confirmed today that four of the names put forwards by the British Government have been placed on the list. These are Omar Hussain from High Wycombe, Nasser Muthana from Cardiff, Aqsa Mahmood from Glasgow and Sally-Anne Jones from Chatham in Kent.
Sally-Anne Jones replied on Twitter:
“Just found out from an article that David Cameron has put me on a UN sanctions list as i LOL @ England for giving me a travel ban :)”.
A future Labour Government would nationalise the railways it has been agreed at their annual party conference in Brighton. The franchises would be brought back under public control as they expire so a third of the franchises would be nationalised between 2020 and 2025.
The national executive confirmed that:
“Conference opposes another round of unneeded, unwanted and ill-thought-through privatisation”.
Nigel Farage, the leader of UKIP, has said that the party conference this year will be focused on the referendum on the UK membership of the EU rather than internal matters.
UKIP’s party conference starts today in Doncaster and in an interview with Sky News Nigel Farage also said about the Labour challenge:
“Respectable old Labour voters don’t want to vote for someone who wants to abolish the Queen, give away the Falklands, has sympathy for the IRA and now, on the one thing he might have kept them on board with, his long-term opposition to the EU, he has even surrendered on that”.
Further information about the conference is available at http://www.ukip.org/doncaster.
Peter Mandelson, the former Labour First Secretary of State, has warned against pushing out Jeremy Corbyn, the current Labour leader, too early. His comments were seen in a private paper which had been seen by the Guardian Newspaper.
Mandelson said in the paper:
“In choosing Corbyn instead of Ed Miliband, the general public now feel we are just putting two fingers up to them, exchanging one loser for an even worse one. We cannot be elected with Corbyn as leader”.
Mandelson had warned Labour Party members against electing Jeremy Corbyn during the election process and comes from the Blairite wing of the party.
Corbyn’s team have yet to respond to Mandelson’s papers but during the leadership election he said of Mandelson:
“Despite what Mandelson might think, the tide is turning”
Tobias Ellwood, the Minister for North Africa, has welcomed the decision of the Egypt Government to pardon a number of journalists and human rights activists. In a statement he said:
“I welcome the President Al-Sisi’s pardoning of Mohammed Fahmy and Baher Mohammed, two Al Jazeera journalists sentenced to 3 years imprisonment in August. It is vital that the Egyptian authorities now move swiftly to resolve the situation of the other defendants in this case, including two British Nationals.
I also welcome the pardoning of a number of human rights activists, including Yara Sallam and Sanaa Seif who had been sentenced under the Protest Law. The release of further peaceful activists would be another positive demonstration of President Al-Sisi’s commitment to the rights and freedoms of the Egyptian people.
We will continue to call on the Egyptian government to ensure the rule of law and rights enshrined in the Egyptian constitution are protected, so that journalists and peaceful activists are able to operate freely and without fear of persecution”.
Jeremy Corbyn, the Leader of the Opposition, has clashed with Owen Smith, the newly appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, over the subject of the benefit cap.
Smith had said that it would be “foolhardy” to oppose the benefit cap, but that Labour would not support any further reductions to the level of the benefit cap. The previous benefits cap was supported by the previous Labour leaders, Ed Miliband and Harriet Harman.
Corbyn’s spokesman today though rejected this and confirmed that the benefits cap would be entirely abolished. In an interview with the New Statesman Corbyn also said:
“In my own constituency, the benefit cap has had the effect of social cleansing, of people receiving benefit but the benefit is capped, therefore, they can’t meet the rent levels charged and are forced to move. It’s devastating for children, devastating for the family and very bad for the community as a whole”.
The current benefits cap is £500 a week for couples, £500 a week for single parents with children and £350 for single adults with no children living with them. There are some exceptions for those with disabilities and special requirements.
The UK Government is to provide £115 million in funding to help ease the Syrian refugee crisis. The Government also called on the European Union to do more to provide funding to help the refugees.
The largest recipient of the aid money will be the World Food Programme who will receive £40 million, with additional donations being made to UNICEF, UN Relief and Works Agency, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the UN’s Refugee Agency.
Justine Greening, the International Development Secretary, said in a statement:
“Once again the UK is leading the way in meeting the most immediate, basic needs of hundreds of thousands of Syrians caught up in this conflict.
Our new support will give desperate people the food, clean water and shelter they need to survive on a daily basis where they are, so they won’t have to risk their lives fleeing the region and attempting the treacherous crossing to Europe. It will also provide immediate, life-saving humanitarian assistance and protection to refugees in transit.
The UN is desperately underfunded and more help is urgently needed in the short term. Today’s emergency European Council meeting presents a real opportunity for the EU to show leadership in tackling the humanitarian and migration crisis at source.
That means continuing to meet basic needs inside Syria and across the region, while helping host countries cope with growing numbers of refugees. At the same time, we must ensure Syrian children can get an education and adult refugees have the prospect of finding work if we are to address some of the issues that are driving people to move and give them some cause to hope for the future”.
Tim Farron, the new leader of the Liberal Democrats, has addressed members at the party’s annual conference being held in Bournemouth this week.
“If Labour aren’t interested in standing up to the Tories and providing a credible opposition, that’s their funeral. The Liberal Democrats will fill that space. Radical and liberal and responsible too”.
The party conference will run until 23 September 2015.
A poll for ComRes has shown that Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party hasn’t experienced a honeymoon period as would usually be expected for a new leader. The Conservatives polled 42% (up 2%), Labour 30% (up 1%) giving the Conservatives an increased lead of 12%.
Asked about individual figures those polled named Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell, the new Shadow Chancellor, as those they least liked. 52% of those polled did though credit Jeremy Corbyn with increasing interest in politics.