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Jul 29, 2014

Britain cuts EU migrants’ access to welfare payments

LONDON (Reuters) – British Prime Minister David Cameron on Tuesday set out new welfare rules to cut access to social security payments for migrants from the European Union, the latest in a string of British measures aimed at addressing voter concern over immigration.

Writing in The Daily Telegraph newspaper, Cameron said that from November migrants coming to Britain from the EU to find work would be entitled to claim unemployment and child benefits for three months, rather than the previous six months.

Jul 23, 2014

Ukraine crisis puts Britain’s Cameron on spot over Russian donations

LONDON (Reuters) – British Prime Minister David Cameron came under pressure over the Ukraine crisis on Wednesday after he was forced to defend a party political donation from the wife of a former minister in Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government.

Lyubov Chernukhina, the wife of Vladimir Chernukhin, a former deputy finance minister in Putin’s government, agreed to pay 160,000 pounds ($272,500) to Cameron’s Conservative Party at a fund-raising gala this month in exchange for a game of tennis with Cameron and Boris Johnson, the mayor of London.

Jul 22, 2014

Hardline Muslims tried to impose Islam in British city’s schools: government report

LONDON (Reuters) – A British government inquiry has found that hardline Muslims tried to impose an “intolerant and aggressive” Islamic agenda on some schools in the city of Birmingham, including separation of boys and girls in lessons and banning Christmas celebrations.

Some of the majority-Moslem schools invited speakers with known extremist views to assemblies and promoted organizations that would be categorized as ‘extremist’ under government classifications, according to the report by Peter Clarke, former head of London Metropolitan Police’s Counter Terrorism Command.

Jul 21, 2014

UK’s Cameron wants tougher EU Russia sanctions, defense sale ban

LONDON (Reuters) – The European Union should impose harder-hitting sanctions on Russia after the downing of a Malaysian airliner in Ukraine, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Monday, advocating an EU ban on future sales of military equipment to Moscow.

The 28-nation EU has been under pressure from the United States and Ukraine to take a harder line on Russia, but some EU governments are wary of potential retaliation from Moscow, the bloc’s biggest energy supplier.

Jul 21, 2014

Cameron wants tougher EU Russia sanctions, defence sale ban

LONDON (Reuters) – The European Union should impose harder-hitting sanctions on Russia after the downing of a Malaysian airliner in Ukraine, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Monday, advocating an EU ban on future sales of military equipment to Moscow.

The 28-nation EU has been under pressure from the United States and Ukraine to take a harder line on Russia, but some EU governments are wary of potential retaliation from Moscow, the bloc’s biggest energy supplier.

Jul 21, 2014

UK overhauls employee pension schemes, offers more flexibility

LONDON, July 21 (Reuters) – Britain published new rules for
private pensions on Monday which give retirees greater freedom
to spend their savings as they like, fleshing out reforms
announced earlier this year that shook the share value of
British insurers.

Finance minister George Osborne caught Britain’s pensions
industry by surprise in March when he scrapped a rule forcing
people to buy an annuity, a financial product which converts a
retiree’s pension pot into a guaranteed retirement income.

Jul 20, 2014

Britain to detail pensions overhaul with tax, annuity reforms

LONDON, July 21 (Reuters) – Britain will on Monday publish
new rules for the pensions industry giving retirees greater
access to their savings and free financial advice, fleshing out
reforms announced earlier this year that shook the share value
of British insurers.

Finance minister George Osborne caught Britain’s pensions
industry by surprise in March when he scrapped a rule forcing
people to buy an annuity, a financial product which converts a
retiree’s pension pot into a guaranteed retirement income.

Jul 20, 2014

UK, France, Germany eye fresh Russia sanctions after plane disaster

LONDON/PARIS, July 20 (Reuters) – Britain, Germany and
France agreed on Sunday they should be ready to ratchet up
sanctions on Russia over the downing of a Malaysian jet carrying
298 passengers when European foreign ministers meet in Brussels
on Tuesday.

Ukraine on Sunday accused separatist rebels of hiding
evidence that a Russian missile was used in the shooting down of
the airline that has intensified a showdown between the Kremlin
and Western powers.

Jul 17, 2014

UK apologises for scheme that let Irish bomb suspect go free

LONDON/BELFAST (Reuters) – A British scheme to inform Irish nationalist militants they were no longer wanted by police was flawed, the government said on Thursday, apologising for a policy that allowed a suspected bomber to walk free earlier this year.

Suspected members of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) received letters telling them they were no longer wanted, as part of a 1998 peace deal that largely ended three decades of violence over Britain’s rule of Northern Ireland.

Jul 15, 2014

UK’s Cameron turns to women and Eurosceptics in major ministerial shake-up

LONDON (Reuters) – British Prime Minister David Cameron on Tuesday pushed through his biggest government shake-up since coming to power in 2010, promoting women and Eurosceptics to senior roles in an appeal to voters in next May’s national election.

In one surprise development, William Hague, Britain’s most senior diplomat for the past four years, voluntarily stood down allowing Cameron to appoint Philip Hammond, the defence minister and a prominent Eurosceptic, to the influential post.