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Newslinks for Thursday 15th September 2022

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A nation pays its respects

“The wait was over. As thousands queued across central London, the Queen was handed to the care of the nation to lie in state in Westminster Hall. The public will be able to pay their respects until 6.30am on Monday. The mourning began last night after the Queen left Buckingham Palace, her home for 70 years, for the last time, borne on a gun carriage that processed along The Mall watched by tens of thousands of onlookers. In bright early autumn sunshine, military bands played funeral marches as the King and members of the royal family walked behind the coffin, which was draped with the Royal Standard and bore the imperial state crown on a purple cushion. For the family, the procession was an opportunity to put on a united front as King Charles walked with his sons, the Prince of Wales and Duke of Sussex, the first time all three have been seen in public together since the Queen died at Balmoral a week ago.” – The Times

  • The line kept swelling – The Times
  • How the Royal family solemnly handed over Queen Elizabeth to a nation in mourning – Daily Telegraph
  • All the pomp was stripped bare and solemn dignity reigned – The Times
  • Time is paused as Queen Elizabeth is honoured with the ultimate mark of respect – Daily Telegraph
  • Family pay tribute to late monarch – FT
  • Solemn march – The Sun
  • Queen passes into monarchy’s 900-year history – The Guardian
  • Long journeys and winding queues – The Guardian
  • Mourners queue through the night – Daily Mail
  • Anger as MPs get four extra passes so they can jump queue – Daily Mail
  • Queue to see Queen could close on Saturday night – Daily Mail
  • Royal guard collapses – Daily Express
  • Queen Elizabeth’s final journey could be extended so more people can pay respects – Daily Telegraph
  • King retreats to Highgrove for day of reflection – The Times
  • Harry and Meghan ‘furious’ as Archie and Lilibet will not get HRH status – The Sun
  • US paper criticises ‘moneymaking’ Charles estate – The Times
  • Readers bombard New York Times with complaints – Daily Mail
  • BBC ‘politicising’ coverage of Queen Elizabeth’s death is ‘outrageous’ – Daily Telegraph
  • The Charles aide who won’t shy from speaking truth to royalty – The Times
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Truss set to meet Biden in private before Queen’s funeral

“Liz Truss is expected to hold one-to-one talks with President Biden and other world leaders gathered in London before the Queen’s funeral on Monday. Downing Street and the Foreign Office had been keen to stress that the event would not be used as a diplomatic exercise, despite the presence of more than 100 heads of state in the capital to pay their respects. But yesterday it emerged that the new prime minister would use the occasion to hold a small number of bilateral meetings with key allies over the weekend. However, because of the circumstances, the leaders will not pose for photographs or take part in any formal press conferences. No information about what they discuss will be released. It is thought that among other leaders, Truss will meet Biden for the first time since she became prime minister.” – The Times

More royal staff fear redundancy via ‘death clause’

“Royal staff are braced for further job losses after former Buckingham Palace employees claimed that they were given contracts which expired six months after the Queen died. Former aides told The Times that a six-month grace period following the monarch’s death was included in their employment agreements. It follows redundancy letters being sent to about 100 employees of Clarence House just as they were working long hours to smooth the King’s elevation to the throne. Buckingham Palace staff could also now be facing an uncertain future. One former aide, who did not want to be named, said that Buckingham Palace workers recognised that when the monarch died, their employment status could change.” – The Times

  • Personal aides face redundancy but those in grace and favour homes won’t be evicted – Daily Telegraph

Bankers’ bonus cap could be scrapped

“The Chancellor might scrap the cap on bankers’ bonuses to increase London’s competitiveness against its financial rivals New York, Frankfurt, Hong Kong and Paris. Kwasi Kwarteng is said to be considering the move as a sign of his new “Big Bang 2.0” approach to City regulations after Brexit. The Financial Times reported that although no final decisions had been taken, people close to the Chancellor’s thinking said that he wanted to scrap the cap that was introduced by EU legislation in 2014. The UK has long opposed the bonus cap, which limits annual payouts to twice a banker’s salary. If a bank wanted to pay one of its employees in London £3 million for their work over the past 12 months, it would need to pay that person a salary of at least £1 million.” – The Times

  • Kwarteng to abandon bankers’ bonus cap to boost City – FT
  • Doubts over Tory’s concierge business – The Times
Comment

Truss seeks to allay fears of civil service purge but lines up changes

“Liz Truss is seeking to calm fears across Whitehall of a purge of senior civil servants, following the abrupt sacking last week of Sir Tom Scholar as permanent secretary to the Treasury. But multiple senior officials told the Financial Times that it was widely expected that Simon Case, head of the civil service and cabinet secretary, would be replaced in the coming months, once the new prime minister has stabilised her government. As well as Scholar’s sacking, Truss has replaced Sir Stephen Lovegrove as national security adviser with Sir Tim Barrow, a senior Foreign Office diplomat. But one senior government insider said Truss was not seeking to oust significant numbers of high-ranking officials. “She hasn’t arrived with a sense that all permanent secretaries and the civil service are hopeless. It was more dealing with specific issues,” he said.” – FT

  • Former head of civil service says move is ‘disgraceful’ and will have a ‘chilling effect’ – The Guardian
  • Labour MPs warned about talking to media except for Queen tributes – The Guardian

Ukraine push liberates 150,000 from Russian occupation

“Some 150,000 Ukrainians have been freed from Russian occupation during a recent counteroffensive in the country’s northeast, Ukraine announced today, after President Zelensky said prisoners, “saboteurs” and alleged collaborators were being rounded up. The Ukrainian leader said that about 3,100 sq miles (8,000 sq km) in the north eastern region of Kharkiv that was previously occupied by Russian forces had now been liberated — an area nearly as large as North Yorkshire, or equivalent of Crete. Zelensky this morning visited the newly recaptured town of Izium, a key supply hub in the north eastern Kharkiv region, a Ukrainian military brigade said, following the departure of Russian troops a few days ago.” – The Times

Comment

Swedish PM resigns as right-wing bloc wins

“Magdalena Andersson, the Swedish prime minister, resigned today and conceded defeat in last weekend’s election after it became clear that the right-wing bloc had won by a narrow margin of three parliamentary seats with almost all the votes counted. The outcome was a historic political shift in the traditionally liberal nation amid a surge in support for the Sweden Democrats, a party with neo-Nazi roots. It emerged as the second biggest force in parliament, and the biggest in the right-wing bloc, ahead of the Moderate Party, which traditionally leads the conservative camp. Jimmie Akesson, leader of the Sweden Democrats, has the role of kingmaker and has begun talks with the leaders of the other three parties of the right.” – The Times

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Obituary: Tessa Keswick, political adviser to Ken Clarke, director of the Centre for Policy Studies and Sinophile

“Tessa Keswick, who has died aged 79, was a well-known Society figure who surprised those who did not know her – and even some who did – by emerging in middle age as a far-from-grey eminence in the Conservative Party. She straddled both sides of the party in its bitter ideological struggles. Her first appointment was as political adviser to Kenneth Clarke, Chancellor of the Exchequer in John Major’s government, something of a “wet” and an arch-Europhile. But then, having served with this bête noire of the Tory Right, in 1995 she became director of the Centre for Policy Studies. This was the intellectual centre of the dry, free-marketing Right of the party, where the Thatcherite revolution had been given some of its theoretical sustenance. Even then she was not easily branded in terms of wet and dry, Left and Right. She disapproved in theory of “perverse incentive”, as in: “If you pay single mothers benefit, why would they marry and relieve the state?” – Daily Telegraph

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