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tv   Tuesday in Parliament  BBC News  April 10, 2019 2:30am-3:01am BST

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welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to viewers the headlines: in north america and around the globe. the israeli prime minister, my name is mike embley. benjamin netanyahu, and his main our top stories: opponent have both made victory no clear winner in israel's general election. current prime minister benjamin speeches as partial vote tallies from tuesday's election netanyahu could be in a stronger showed the ruling likud party marginally ahead. position to form a coalition. neither mr netanyahu nor the centrist challenger benny gantz look likely to have enough seats to form a government without the support also claiming victory, benny gantz, leader of the centrist blue of smaller parties. and white party. eu leaders will meet in brussels britain's prime minister meets later to consider a request germany's chancellor to discuss by theresa may to delay a short delay to brexit. brexit until 30 june. there are signs the eu the president of the european favours a longer extension, council, donald tusk, which could mean more has suggested that the uk may be asked to accept a much longer extension of up to a year. trouble for mrs may. mrs may has been trying to win the support of germany's chancellor merkel still awaiting more details from the mueller report. the us attorney general says ahead of the summit. he will let congress and the public see a redacted version the us attorney general, within a week. william barr, has said he intends no pause in the protests in algeria, to release a restricted version as a new interim president of the long—awaited report on russian election interference within a week. the democrats say the mueller report should be released in full.
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now on bbc news, tuesday in parliament. hello there, and welcome to tuesday in parliament. coming up in the next half—hour, mps back the prime minister's bid for a brexit extension to the end ofjune, though one admits the changing date is causing some confusion. we've now got a wiped clean board in my office so we can fill in the current date that we're leaving. calls for the government to review changes to payments for bereaved parents. this new payment is not even being uprated, so every year that goes by, the value of the new payment goes down in real terms year—on—year. and there are renewed calls for alleged perpetrators of the rwandan genocide to be extradited from the uk. the souls of those murdered
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in the genocide cry out forjustice, but from britain, justice has at the least been delayed, and at worst denied. but first, theresa may spent the day not at westminster, but in europe for last minute brexit talks ahead of a crucial eu summit later this week. the prime minister was setting out the case for delaying brexit untiljune the 30th. the prime minister began with a trip to berlin to meet the german chancellor angela merkel. mrs merkel said a delay that runs to the end of the year or the start of 2020 was a possibility. and then it was on to paris for what were widely expected to be trickier conversations with french president emmanuel macron. without unanimous agreement from all 27 remaining eu leaders, the uk is due to leave the european union this friday. back at westminster, mps agreed to bind the pm to asking for a further delay under new legislation passed late on monday night. opening the debate, the solicitor general expressed regret that the commons
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hadn't been able to agree theresa may's withdrawal agreement. government did not want to be in this position. i don't say that in a spirit of seeking to attribute blame to people, but in a moment of solemn reflection. i think it's important that we have to acknowledge where we've found ourselves. he turned to the possibility of a long extension meaning the uk would have to take part in european parliament elections in may. of course, the new european parliament does not meet until early july, and therefore it is important, i think, for us to distinguish the needs to have elections and then the requirement for british meps to have to actually sit in the european parliament if we are indeed to leave the european union before early july. i think i heard him say at the despatch box that it was highly feasible that the government may actually end up fighting the european elections, then only after that, not to allow its meps to take their seats. say they had been given an extension, but somehow we have managed to ratify the...
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is that correct? when we go, is it government policy that we would go as far to fight an election, but not take our seats at the end of it? my right honourable friend is quite right to ask about that detail. i think we are obliged to, as a matter of law, prepare for european elections. but if we have left and exited the european union by the end ofjune, then we are no longer members, we are third countries and therefore the requirement to take our seats in the european parliament would have ended. we can't go on lurching from one cliff edge crisis to another. and it does concern me that unless the government is able to craft a deal which commands a majority of this house, the 22nd of may or the 30th ofjune are not very far away. and i would much prefer an opportunity, if necessary, for a longer and fungible extension which enables us to make some decisions without the pressure we have.
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we can't keep having these ridiculous cliff edge debates moving it forward by a fortnight and a month every now and again. another conservative wondered what he should tell his activists. they've been telling constituents for two years we were leaving on the 29th of march, and then it became the 12th of april. we've now got a wiped clean board in my office so we can fill in the current date that we're leaving. what should he be telling them on the doorstep? just like my honourable friend, i am an assiduous canvasser and i'm having those conversations myself. the best way to move forward is to agree a deal. if we're to have a brexit at all, that's self—evidently true. the problem is we're not being offered a deal, we've been offered the deal, the prime minister's deal, and is this not the time to concede that it's a bad deal socially and economically and that's the reason the government are in the position they're in?
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the government should be mortified, frankly, that they've been forced to ask once again for this house's approval to seek an extension to the article 50 process. the longer extension to get this right without having these cliff edges would be preferable, and has he noticed that the erg on the other side are doing their best to stymie a long extension by threatening the eu that the uk will cause havoc in the eu institutions if there is such a long extension? i actually think that if there had been an amendment tabled by her majesty's opposition seeking a much longer extension, it would have won certainly the support of most of us sitting over in this quarter. ijust wonder if there is a reason why the opposition didn't table that amendment and make sure we get the long extension which certainly would do the job for manufacturers in particular. i thank the honourable lady for that point. i think the honest answer is we all know that the 30th ofjune is not a particularly
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realistic proposition, and that the prime minister was forced to propose that date more for the reasons of party management than what the eu... and she has, in a sense, contracted out the decision to the eu, and we would expect the government to accept any reasonable extension that goes beyond the 30th ofjune with a proviso that if this house approved and ratified a withdrawal agreement, we would exit at that point. a former cabinet minister and brexiteer said there was a threat to both main parties, as many marginal seats backed leave. at the moment, we have a free market on leave votes. ukip has disappeared, and there is no one else. if we are so stupid as to pass this and go for a european election, we will single—handedly give an opportunity to a new party to emerge funded with european money. and that would be a great mistake. i give way. i'm very grateful. can ijust say with the greatest of respect to my right honourable friend, this is an issue
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about getting it right for our country, for businesses and employees. this is not about grubbing around for votes. we are told that we shouldn't participate in those elections because of what it will do to the conservatives in electoral terms. mr speaker, i don't give a stuff about what it will do to the conservatives in electoral terms. i do care what a disastrous no—deal will do to my constituents, and so should each and every member of this house. and at the end of that debate, mps overwhelmingly backed the motion committing theresa may to seeking an extension. well, staying with brexit, the chancellor has claimed that too many businesses have their heads in the sand about the risk of the uk leaving the eu without a deal. philip hammond told mps the government had tried to engage with manufacturing companies so they took precautionary action. the issue was raised
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by a conservative mp who resigned as a brexit minister last week. the honourable member for newcastle—upon—tyne central reminded us of how mirror housing across the country was full to bursting point, the stocks for businesses as businesses prepared for a no—deal brexit. in a leaked letter last week, the chancellor inferred that business was not ready for a no—deal brexit. which is correct? well, we know that manufacturing companies have been building precautionary buffer stocks of imported components to give them resilience against any disruption at our ports in the event of a no—deal brexit. but it is also... this tends to be larger companies, but it is also the case that, as my honourable friend knows very well from his work as a minister, that despite government's attempts to engage with business, there are still far too many businesses who have adopted the approach, the famous approach of the ostrich in the sand
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in relation to this eventuality and are not taking precautionary actions to prepare for the possibility of a no—deal exit. with the chancellor widely seen as a supporter of a so—called soft brexit, conservative brexiteers challenged him directly on his views on alternatives to theresa may's plan. given that the people have already decided, presumably the chancellor does not want a second referendum. mr speaker, contrary to some reports, i have never advocated a second referendum. i simply observed that it is a coherent proposition along with many others that have been discussed in this house. these question time exchanges took place before the chancellor and his labour shadow took part in talks designed to break the brexit deadlock. with the brexit dialogue ongoing, it's best to leave exchanges on that topic to the negotiations, though i hope we can all count upon the chancellor, if not everyone on his own side, to continue to insist that no—deal is not an option. can i turn to google?
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when will the chancellor tackle the scandal of google's tax avoidance? google has an estimated taxable profit of {8.3 billion in the uk. so it should have a tax bill, according to the tax justice network, of {1.5 billion. that would pay for 60,000 nurses, 50,000 teachers, seven new hospitals, 75 new schools. it pays 67 million. why is the chancellor year—on—year letting google the tax avoider off the hook? well, as i think the right honourable gentleman probably knows very well, the issue is a good deal more complex than he has suggested in his question. we have announced the introduction of a digital services tax to begin to address the challenge of shaping our tax system to respond to the digital age. but the problem is we have a set of international tax rules, which we are obliged to follow, which were invented in the age
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when international trade was all about goods. nowadays, it's mostly about services, and much of it is about digital services. the international tax system is simply not fit for purpose. and the chancellor said britain was leading the way in pursuing an international agreement on how to change the system. now while the terms of the uk's exit from the eu are still far from clear, work continues in parliament to make sure the uk is ready to leave. the government wants to make sure that all eu—based laws and regulations in place now have been transferred into british domestic law. that includes ensuring the uk will continue to enforce sanctions against iran, venezuela, myanmar and guinea—bissau. we are committed to maintaining our sanctions capabilities and leadership role after we leave the eu. and honourable members will recall that the sanctions and anti—money laundering act of 2018 provides the uk with the legal powers to impose,
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update and lift sanctions after we leave the eu. can the minister give the house an assurance that there is no immediate intention to change the sanctions list from the one we adopt from the eu? mr deputy speaker, i can confer that there is no such intention. indeed, the sort of intention and the expectation is that the existing regimes in the eu sanctions regime will be, as it were, lifted and shifted and put into ours. but what we will have to make sure is, that having scrutinised the individual elements of these, they all meet the threshold of evidence and justification which our own autonomous act of parliament requires. so it's possible that something may
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not be carried over, but the expectation is that everything will be. given that the uk has less capacity than the eu collectively, what resources are being put in place to ensure that the uk continues to update the list of sanctioned individuals and groups, or will we simply be mirroring any updates made by the eu? our intention is to transfer eu sanctions, but because we have our own autonomous regime, the evidential threshold must be met. labour wondered how the uk would co—operate with the eu. on the one hand, of course, everybody can have their idea about what the perfect sanctions regime should be in order to get the particular policy objective which they want affected. i think the problem with that kind of lone ranger approach is that actually for sanctions to be effectove, you need to have shared regimes. we already see there is an awkwardness if the european
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regimes are not absolutely in—line with the american regime. and i think the proliferation of more different legal regimes would cause significant problems to british banks and british businesses. helen goodman there. you're watching tuesday in parliament with me, alicia mccarthy, and don't forget you can follow me on twitter, @bbcalicia. now it's 25 years since the rwandan genocide that left nearly a million people dead. over a period of 100 days in 1994, hutu extremists killed hundreds of thousands of minority tutsis. moderate hutus were also killed. marking the 25th anniversary at the weekend, the rwandan president lit a flame of remembrance. five alleged perpetrators
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of the rwandan genocide are living in the uk. rwanda tried to extradite them, but the high court refused extradition in 2017, ruling that the men would not get a fair trial. the metropolitan police is now investigating the allegations. many mps are unhappy at the handling of the case. once the killing was ended, those responsible, the leaders of the genocide, fled. over the intervening years, many have returned voluntarily to rwanda to be processed through the court system. others have been extradited to rwanda, including from the us, canada, france, norway, denmark, germany, the netherlands, belgium and sweden. britain, sadly, is a glaring exception. he said the rwandan authorities had asked the uk to carry out the trials. in spite of all the evidence being available here already in the united kingdom, police have indicated it could take a further ten years to process.
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mr speaker, the souls of those murdered in the genocide cry out for justice, but from britain, justice has at the least been delayed, and at worst denied. in the interest of those facing these dreadful allegations, as well as for the reputation of british justice, we should surely expect these five alleged to be on trial at the old bailey at the end of this year. when the court ruled these individuals could not be extradited, the united kingdom, under its obligation to the genocide convention and after request by the rwandan government, took on the investigation itself, went out to meet and gather evidence in rwanda and meeting officials there and there is a live police investigation into a number of individuals for potential war crimes. my right honourable friend will also understand that as it is a live police investigation, there is no more i can say on this
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particular matter for fear of either prejudicing a fair trial here for anything else, and that is where we have to live. that is the facts we find before us. the government is not shielding any war criminals, nor should it and we would not. we are doing our best. it is right that these allegations be investigated in this country. we believe in a rules—based international order, and if that is to mean anything, it must mean that a crime against humanity is a crime against us all, no matter where it takes place in the world. all efforts must be made to pursue justice for victims. patrick grady visited rwanda as part of a commonwealth parliamentary association delegation. i saw first—hand the efforts being made to achieve justice and build peace, but the question of alleged perpetrators remaining overseas does leave a cloud hanging
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over those attempts, and it's not fair either on those who are accused to be left with these accusations left untested or on the victims. i believe that he is defending the indefensible. there have been ten years during the extradition proceedings when information, i assume, has been gathered by the authorities. to say that it takes a further 3—5 years or probably closer to ten to then bring the matter to trial is just unbelievable. i would like to see these people off our streets. i do not want war criminals walking around this country. i don't want them on a day—to—day basis, and i want them to face justice. and i have very strong views that these people should face injustice. but police investigations are complex, he said, and there wasn't a magic wand to wave to speed things up. the immigration minister was summoned to the commons to answer an urgent question about compensation for the windrush generation. people from the caribbean
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who arrived in britain after world war ii and who faced deportation or detention by the home office if they couldn't prove their right to be in the uk. last week, the government announced a compensation scheme for those affected, insisting there wouldn't be any cap on the amount paid out. but a labour mp said a document published on the same day suggested otherwise. in the response of the windrush compensation scheme document he brought to this house, there was no detailed caps, this was widely published online in a separate compensation schemes rule document slipped out later on the 3rd of april. mps therefore had no chance to scrutinise or question the truth that his department had set out incredibly strict caps to be awarded for different losses. a £500 payment for legal costs incurred. £500 for people who have been denied the chance to go to university. 1000 for those wrongly obliged to leave the country under
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a so—called voluntary return scheme. and a mere £10,000 for people who were wrongly deported. victims have correctly described these payments as peanuts and insultingly low. the immigration minister said that wasn't the full picture of the compensation on offer. actually these different heads of claim which can be claimed for it need not be in the single, but can be cumulative. there also is a discretionary category which would enable people to claim for other losses necessarily identified within the scheme which is uncapped, and it's absolutely that method he felt provided in the scheme online, but it is important to reflect that whilst there is a tariff set at £10,000 for somebody who was wrongly deported, of course that could be in conjunction with other parts of the claim which could add up to significant sums in addition to that. the shadow minister responded to the details
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of the compensation scheme. ministers did not make all the information available to her majesty's opposition when we had initially a response to, we were able to respond to this scheme. some might say, i won't say that, that ministers were tempted to conceal the reality of the derisive nature of their scheme. above all, the home secretary said there was no cap. these tariffs are a cap. we are asking, even at this late stage, ministers to review these unfair tariffs, to remove the cap and to give this generation the justice they deserve. but the minister said the government had been transparent. i think it is somewhat unfair given that the rules and guidance were published on the same day as the home secretary made the statement to suggest that there was any attempt
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to conceal the scheme. indeed far from it, we have sought to publicise the scheme, to reach out to posts across the world with a selection of communication tools, inviting high commissioners into the home office last week to scrutinise the scheme to them. now the government has been urged to rethink an overhaul of bereavement payments made in 2017. previously, an eligible surviving partner could receive the widowed pa rents allowa nce paya ble until the youngest child was 20 years old. but that's been reduced to a period of 18 months. one peer said the exclusion of unmarried couples was shameful. the minister set out the position. her majesty's government will assess the impact of this benefit, including for parents with dependent children once sufficient evidence is available to consider all aspects of the policy. i am sorry to say that i am not able to confirm a timetable at this
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moment, but we are committed to carrying out the assessment. the peer behind the questions said the new policy might help more people, but it helped most children for a shorter amount of time. and he had an example of one family that had been affected. my lords, two years ago, a husband and a father spoke from his deathbed. markjaffe, may his memory be for a blessing, and as he feared, today, his widow emma and their two school age children receive no bereavement support. this as a result of the new policy to limit payments to 18 months. so can i therefore ask my noble friend, the minister, who is compassionate and works in a department that cares for the vulnerable, to consider introducing a new benefit specifically for the bereaved child, whereby bereaved children support payments would be paid until they
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finish full—time schooling? this, my lords, would be not only compassionate, but in those tragic circumstances, the right thing to do. lady steadman—scott offered her sympathy. i would find myself difficult to give any impression that a new policy is going to be developed in this field. but i have to say to the noble lord that i am and my colleagues in the department are very happy to meet to hear ideas of how not only a benefit can be developed, but how it might be funded. my lords, at the moment, what is happening is the payment is not even being uprated, because every year that goes by, the value of the new payment goes down in real terms year on year. and the noble lady mentioned money, when this was originally scored, although the government said it wasn't about money, in fact it was scored as saving £100 million a year in a study after two years.
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also perhaps government could take that money and consider how it might invest it back into the parents of bereaved children. i take the point that the noble baroness raises, but there are, on the face of it, cost savings in this. it was never, ever, ever intended to be a cost—saving exercise. it was intended to provide support in those early days of grieving. also it replaced something which started in 1925 when women weren't expected to work and their husbands were. so i will take on point the point she raised to the department. lady steadman—scott. that's it for me for now. i'll be back at the same time tomorrow with wednesday in parliament and the day here at westminster, complete with the highlights from prime minister's questions. but for now, from me, alicia mccarthy, goodbye.
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hello, good morning. temperatures on a downward trend over the next few days and nights. we manage 16 degrees in western scotland, cold air is coming down from scandinavia over the north sea so it will feel chilly for the next few days. but at least we're going to get some sunshine, a bit like we did here. tuesday was still cold and grey and wet at times across southern england and it will be southern england that sees the biggest change in the weather for wednesday because the cloud that was sitting there bringing some rain at times, is finally moving southward into the english channel. still a bit of cloud, along the south coast, otherwise dry. clear skies further north, the winds mean we are more likely to have a frost. temperatures down to —2, —3.
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it will warm up to a certain extent on wednesday in the sunshine, the cloud moves away from the south—west, otherwise a dry day. fairweather cloud building up in north—east england. a noticeable window down the eastern side of england especially in the south—east, it will add to that chill, but at at least the sunshine will be out, still only nine degrees along those north sea coast, further west highs of 12 or 13 celsius. those temperatures will fall away in the evening and overnight and we'll have clear skies. except for northern scotland where there is more cloud coming in so it won't be as cold. a frost possible for the way out was the west country by thursday morning. as we head towards the end of the week, high pressure dominating the weather, building down from scandinavia across the uk, looking all the weather fronts for the time being. a lot of dry weather, there's cloud in northern scotland
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and there might be a few spots of drizzle over the hills. increasing cloud over central and eastern parts of england, northern ireland, sunshine. typical temperature still only 10 or 11 degrees. light winds on thursday, but that changes on friday. dry sunshine at times, sunshine as we head into the weekend but the winds are going to be strengthening. it might feel a bit cold out there, with pressure lowering out to the west, chance of rain from northern ireland and essentially high pressure still in charge with the south—east of, it should get less cold next week.
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