Brexit latest: Leave voters on ‘right side of history’ – UK secretly sends Australia vacci | Politics | News

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Vaccines: Europe is ‘so far behind UK’ says professor

In praise of the UK Government, former Brexit Party MEP Martin Daubney claimed Britain’s decision to leave the EU has been vindicated following the delivery of 700,000 vaccines to Australia. While the EU threatened to block exports, the UK sent a large vaccine stockpile to Australia in order to avoid any issues with the EU. Commenting on the move, Mr Daubney said: “History will show that Brexit Britain was on the right side of history.

“Remember, the EU blockaded export of vaccines to Australia.

“The UK meanwhile, quietly exports 700,000 doses to our friends Down Under.”

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, 717,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, developed in the UK, were sent to Australia to boost its inoculation programme. 

By doing so, the Australian government avoided any further issues with EU following the introduction of new export controls. 

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Brexit news: MEP praises UK as being on the “right side of history” (Image: FlickR/Twitter)

The first secret batch, classified as coming from “overseas”, arrived in Sydney on February 28. 

A second delivery of 250,000 doses arrived in March following a move by the EU Commission and Italy to block exports. 

Now free from the EU, Whitehall sources claimed the delivery had not been at the expense of the UK’s own rollout. 

Indeed, the UK has now managed to vaccinate close to three-quarters of the population while the EU experiences a third wave of the virus. 


12:30am update: Tax codes after Brexit: How have tax codes changed since Brexit? Are you affected?

TAX codes are an important consideration for life beyond Brexit, but how exactly have tax codes changed since the end of the Brexit transition period on January 1, 2021?

Tax codes are paid by every person under the PAYE scheme. These codes are allocated by the HM Revenue and Customs and are used to determine how much tax is deducted depending on the scenario.

Each individual worker in the UK has a tax code, but they are also used in terms of imports and exports.

A tax code usually consists of several numbers and a letter indicating the terms and conditions of your tax predicament.

11:30pm update: Starmer torn apart for screeching Brexit trade U-turn after relentless pro-EU ‘preaching’

SIR KEIR Starmer has been accused of “hypocrisy” by a prominent Conservative backbencher after announcing Labour’s “British-built by default” policy on defence procurement.

Under the proposal the Government would only be allowed to buy military kit from abroad if it can prove it can’t be UK made.

However last year Sir Keir, a former Remainer, was continuing to argue for “customs union and single market alignment” with Europe.

Under EU competition rules, which focus on “equal treatment”, the Labour leader’s “British by default” policy would be illegal.

Keir Starmer gives speech

Sir Keir Starmer accused of ‘hypocrisy’ over labour’s ‘British-built by default’ policy (Image: Getty Images)

Oliver Trapnell takes over from James Bickerton

10.12pm update: French farmers set tyres on fire in furious protest at EU reforms – Macron issued warning

Violence has flared during demonstrations by furious French farmers protesting against European Union agricultural reform.

Protesters clashed with police in the towns of Bourges and Toulouse as farmers from across the country took a stand against policy changes dictated by Brussels.

About 400 farmers drove into the towns on tractors.

They had posters with inscriptions such as “Save your farmer” and “Macron, don’t do nonsense – there will be elections soon”. The regional branch of the French Farmers’ Association (FNSEA) and the young farmers’ organisation JA had called for the action.

8.52pm update: UK brutally mocks EU jab export ban – official taunts VDL as ‘exceptional progress’ hailed

British officials have taken aim at Brussels’ draconian export controls of vaccines after it emerged UK-made doses were used to plug Australia’s shortfall of AstraZeneca.

More than 700,000 doses of the Oxford COVID-19 jab made domestically were shipped to Australia in late February and March, according to reports by the Sydney Morning Herald.

It was at a similar time that the European Union used its export ban to block the export of 250,000 AstraZeneca shots Down Under.

Soon after taking action, Brussels turned its sights on Britain for apparently having de facto trade controls on the life-saving medical supplies.

7.57pm updade: Fury as UK expats in Europe refused jobs, bank accounts, healthcare – Brexit deal ignored

Britons living in some EU member states have been faced with “Kafkaesque” bureaucracy which has resulted in some being denied access to jobs, bank accounts and healthcare.

This is despite their rights being guaranteed in theory by the withdrawal agreement Britain agreed with Brussels. 

Under its terms Britons already living in Europe, and European’s resident in Britain, were supposed to have their rights protected after Brexit.


Northern Ireland has been rocked by protests over post-Brexit border checks (Image: GETTY)

6.42pm update: EU unity shatters as Denmark accuses Brussels of breaking ‘condition of membership’

The European Union’s plans to impose a bloc-wide minimum wage directive risks breaking terms of a 1970s agreement with Denmark, the country has warned.

The EU has sparked anger in both Sweden and Denmark over its policy, which politicians in the Scandinavian countries seem intent on fighting.

Stockholm urged seven other member states aside from the Danes to join its letter to the EU’s rotating presidency opposing the directive.

While the directive doesn’t force a set a minimum wage figure, it does require all member states to establish procedures for “adequate” minimum wages.

But in countries like Sweden and Denmark, a system of collective bargaining has long been preferred.

5.19pm update: EU leaders unite to stick up for UK over VDL’s export ban threat – leaked memo

Worried European leaders have told Ursula von der Leyen to step back from threatening to ban vaccine shipments to Britain.

EU diplomats warned her draconian export controls risk triggering a tit-for-tat trade war.

And they insisted the European Commission shouldn’t blockade deliveries of Covid jabs to the UK without permission from member states.

EU envoys were today pondering Mrs von der Leyen’s proposed export ban on the life-saving medical supplies to countries with better vaccination rates than the bloc.

4.22pm update: ‘EU’s power is growing’ Deluded Rejoiners unveil fresh plot for United States of Europe

Rejoiners in the UK have teamed up with europhiles across the bloc to launch the first pan-European party in a bid for the EU to become the United States of Europe.

The latest attempt at more integration in the European Union comes from the Volt Europa movement, a self-described pan-European progressive party.

Rejoiners in the UK have already joined the group in the hope that Britain will resubmit itself to the EU’s shackles.

The party of cross-country europhiles has released a comprehensive set of policies, including a foreign policy plan for the bloc to fully become a federalised state with its own EU army.


The Daily Express campaigned strongly for Brexit (Image: EXPRESS )

3.17pm update: Spain and Italy join EU nations ignoring EMA advice and limiting use of AstraZeneca jab

Spain and Italy have restricted the use of the Oxford COVID-19 jab in a move that will hamper their mass vaccination schemes.

Madrid and Rome last night decided to limit the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to people aged above 60.

Their decision ignores an earlier recommendation by EU regulators the EMA that the immunisation was safe to use in all adults.

They join a host of EU nations, including Belgium, France and Germany, already restricting the rollout of the Oxford shot because of concerns it causes blood clots.

James Bickerton takes over live reporting from Bill McLoughlin

1.51pm update: Belfast rioting worst seen in Northern Ireland in years

The riots seen in Northern Ireland post-Brexit have been the worst in years, the police have claimed. 

Police have revealed eight officers were injured at junction between nationalists and loyalists. 

Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) Assistant Chief Constable Jonathan Roberts said: “Last night was at a scale we haven’t seen in Belfast or further afield in Northern Ireland for a number of years. 

“We are very, very lucky no-one was seriously injured or killed last night given in particular the large number of petrol bombs thrown.”

1.05pm update: Keir Starmer calls on Prime Minister to step over post-Brexit issues in Northern Ireland 

Speaking today, Sir Keir stated all parties must convene talks over post-Brexit issues experienced in Northern Ireland.

Following several nights of violence in Belfast, Sir Keir insisted a pragmatic solution must be found. 

He said: “This is about leadership and the Prime Minister can’t be absent.

“He needs to convene talks urgently to find pragmatic political solutions to reduce this violence.

“There are concerns in Northern Ireland about Brexit, there are concerns about the promises that the Prime Minister made which haven’t been kept.”

Brexit news

Brexit news: There has been unrest in Northern Ireland over the last few days (Image: PA)

12.05pm update: Help for expats in Spain: Dominic Raab secures extra £1million into fund for UK pensioners

Boris Johnson’s Government has paid an extra £1million into a fund offering help and support for UK expats who are struggling to cope with rule changes that have come into force after Brexit.

Hugh Elliott, the UK’s ambassador to Spain, has said he is “delighted” by the news, which he predicted would come as a huge boost for the hundreds of thousands of Britons who live in the country.

More than one million UK nationals live in EU and EFTA countries, with the figure for Spain standing at 381,448, according to figures published by Spain’s Permanent Immigration Observatory at the end of last year.

The extra cash – which comes on top of £3 million already allocated by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) earlier this year – will go towards providing practical support for UK nationals living in the EU.

Included are at-risk categories including pensioners and disabled people.

Brexit news

Brexit news: Five moments which led to Brexit (Image: Express)

11.35am update: Coveney says EU must be ‘flexible’ to end frustrations over Brexit deal amid NI violence

Politicians must do more than listen to concerns over the Brexit deal to defuse the tensions in Northern Ireland before somebody is killed, Simon Coveney has warned.

The Irish foreign minister said efforts to end the unrest “has to start at the top with political leadership”.

His remarks came after another night of violence in an areas of Londonderry and Belfast, during which more than 50 police officers have been injured in rioting in recent days.

Mr Coveney told RTE: “This needs to stop before somebody is killed or seriously injured.

“These are scenes we haven’t seen in Northern Ireland for a very long time, they are scenes that many people thought were consigned to history and I think there needs to be a collective effort to try and defuse tensions.”

9.51am update: Banned number plates: DVLA scraps COVID-19 and Brexit designs – ‘poor taste’

The DVLA has released the full list of banned designs for the new 2021 number plates unveiled last month.

The list includes a range of terms referencing swear words or rude language to prevent drivers causing any offence when on the road.

However, new for 2021 is a ban on designs referencing the coronavirus pandemic in a bid to not cause offence to those who have lost loved ones.

The removal of coronavirus designs is the first case of the DVLA banning registration plates linked to a health crisis.

With this in mind, the terms “CO21 ONA” and “CO21 VD” are listed as restricted designs.

The DVLA recently confirmed the terms “COV 11D” and “COV 111D” would also be restricted.

Brexit: Germany and France will ‘come around’ says expert

9.13am update: Starmer accused of hypocrisy as ‘Buy British’ plea backfires – ‘illegal under EU rules’

Sir Keir Starmer has been ridiculed over the Labour Party’s campaign for a ‘Buy British’ approach to defence spending.

Boris Johnson’s closest rival had called for a “British by default” clause that would force ministers to show equipment such as naval ships, warplanes and drones cannot be produced in the UK before it is ordered from overseas.

During a visit to Plymouth on Wednesday, where hundreds of people work on dockyards, the Labour leader attempted to highlight contracts to buy billions of pounds worth of spy planes from overseas.

Sir Keir pointed to a £3billion deal with US giant Boeing to build the P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft based on the manufacturer’s best-selling 737 model, which hunts Russian submarines in the North Sea.

On Wednesday morning, the Labour leader tweeted: “I’m in Plymouth meeting people whose jobs rely on the defence supply chain.

“We can protect their jobs and create more by adopting a ‘Buy British’ approach in defence spending. Let’s invest in jobs, communities, and secure our economy.”

But Sir Keir also came under attack from Conservative backbencher Andrew Bridgen, who accused him of “hypocrisy” after announcing his party’s “British-built by default” policy on defence procurement.

Brexit news

Brexit news: A timeline of events leading to the UK’s exit (Image: Express)

8.18am update: London still has the opportunity to reinvent itself 

Although London has not been granted financial equivalence, head of JP Morgan Chase Jamie Dimon claimed the city could maintain its lead in terms of financial services. 

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, Mr Dimon warned London may well lose its place as a financial hub. 

He did add, however: “We may reach a tipping point many years out when it may make sense to move all functions that service Europe out of the United Kingdom and into continental Europe.

“But London still has the opportunity to adapt and reinvent itself, particularly as the digital landscape continues to revolutionise financial services.”

7.35am update: Brexit Britain praised for being “on the right side of history”

Former Brexit Party MEP Martin Daubney has praised the UK for sending a shipment of 700,000 vaccines to Australia. 

In a major boost to Australia’s coronavirus recovery, the UK sent two separate shipments of the AstraZeneca vaccine manufactured in Britain to the state. 

Commenting on the news, Mr Dauney said: “History will show that Brexit Britain was on the right side of history.

“Remember, the EU blockaded export of vaccines to Australia.

“The UK meanwhile, quietly exports 700,000 doses to our friends Down Under.”

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