A new Taoiseach was elected on Saturday and a range of new Ministers were appointed. Here’s all you need to know about them:
The vote on Wednesday – 114 in favour, four against and one abstention – came two days after a leading opposition politician resigned as speaker in an apparent protest against the decision to delay the election.
But despite ten Tory backbenchers demanding the scalp of his closest adviser and the mastermind of the Brexit Vote Leave campaign, he backed the divisive Machiavellian figure over revelations he twice travelled 270 miles from London to Durham while the public were told to stay at home.
„I understand people will feel frustrated with some of the new rules,“ the PM wrote.
„We are trying to do something that has never had to be done before – moving the country out of a full lockdown, in a way which is safe and does not risk sacrificing all of your hard work.
„I recognise what we are now asking is more complex than simply staying at home, but this is a complex problem and we need to trust in the good sense of the British people.“
The Supreme Judiciary Council said in a statement it ordered the release of protesters detained since demonstrations erupted last year in line with the new prime minister’s call.
The council released detainees based on Article 38 of the constitution that guarantees the right to protest, „provided that it is not accompanied by an act contrary to the law“, it said.
Iraq’s parliament selected Mustafa Khadmini, a former intelligence chief reportedly backed by America, as the country’s new prime minister.
The Iraqi Parliament voted on Wednesday night to approve the government of Mustafa Al Kadhimi, ending weeks of political deadlock.
More than 250 members attended the session in Baghdad and passed 15 ministers while rejecting five – those for trade, justice, culture, agriculture and migration.
„Was very kind to receive Her Majesty’s call this evening to check in and see how we’re all getting on in Australia. The Queen was very interested to hear about our progress in combatting COVID-19 and was so pleased we have managed to prevent the terrible impacts.“
– The Prime Minister was pictured at the back entrance of Downing Street where he smiled to a security guard
– He returns to Westminster facing restlessness for the government to publish a lockdown exit strategy
– He has been recuperating from his own coronavirus battle at Chequers home with fiancée Carrie Symonds
Experts said a ‚period of inactivity‘ in intensive care would result in the Prime Minister suffering a significant loss of muscle mass and strength.
They forecast Mr Johnson would be physically drained from fighting the virus, for which he has received oxygen in St Thomas‘ Hospital in central London.
Robert Jenrick, the Housing and Communities Secretary, insisted that the Prime Minister „will continue to be kept informed as to what’s happening and to be in charge of the Government“ from his hospital bed.
This was echoed by Sir Iain Duncan Smith who said Mr Johnson remained „clear headed“ and would be able to continue running the country, with extra demands falling „on the shoulders“ of his cabinet.
He said he would also prefer setting up a new support fund rather than having countries use the European Stability Mechanism (ESM).
„If you do (support) from the ESM, then it’s a loan and a loan must be paid back,“ he said. „If you do it as a gift, then it’s: ‚Listen, you guys have been hit hard, but together with a number of wealthier countries, we’re prepared to bear the direct costs of the coronavirus crisis‘.“
On top of all that, this would be political idiocy of the highest order, because sooner or later, Gantz and Gabi Ashkenazi will discover what their colleagues in Kahol Lavan’s cockpit, Moshe Ya’alon and Yair Lapid, have already learned through bitter experience: That Netanyahu is exactly what people say of him – a liar, devoid of credibility and dangerous to Israel, just as Kahol Lavan’s leadership so ably explained in election after election. And then, when people once again seek an alternative, nobody in Kahol Lavan’s electorate will give it their vote.
Earlier the Kahol Lavan leader met with Lieberman, agreeing that the main goal is to avoid a fourth round of elections ■ Gantz to hold meeting with all four leaders of Joint List faction Tuesday
Joint List MK and Balad Chairman Mtanes Shehadeh said Saturday following Gantz and Netenyahu’s statements that „the arab community has spoken, they want a change in their position and aim for an end to discrimination and racism. Netanyahu would die to disqualify them but could not, and Gantz would have liked to ignore them but he couldn’t.“
Israel’s right didn’t get the victory it expected – but at least there’s corona ■ Netanyahu’s 2020 achievement: Boosting the Joint List ■ Left and right, Naftali Bennett and Amir Peretz are waging the same war
Announcement means center-left, Joint List bloc will have 62 Knesset seats to pass bill
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu suffered a blow on Thursday afernoon when Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman endorsed Blue and White leader Benny Gantz’s efforts to pass a law that would prevent an indicted MK from forming a government.
„Attempts are being made across the web to suppress the participation of Arab citizens of Israel,“ said Morshed Bebar, who led the Democratic Bloc investigation.
Bebar said that publication patterns by these fake accounts indicate an organized and systematic operation.“
Netanyahu’s ever-changing campaign slogans and the self-praise he exudes in every rally and interview barely mask the prime minister’s real goal: to avoid prosecution for bribery, fraud and breach of trust. The “judicial reforms” promised by the right-wing parties are aimed at aiding one particular, privileged defendant, to save him from facing justice, from the humiliation of appearing in court and perhaps even from imprisonment. To obtain that goal, they will turn the entire legal system into an obedient arm of a right-wing government.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed, apparently falsely, during a prime-time television interview on Saturday that reports have described as “leftists” the judges who will preside over the three corruption cases against him, and demanded a denial of the alleged claim.
It is no secret that Netanyahu’s political behavior is almost entirely shaped by his desire to survive in office for as long as possible in order to avoid possible jail time.
He was selected as premier designate on Feb. 1, two months after Adel Abdul-Mahdi, now caretaker prime minister, resigned under pressure from anti-government demonstrations.
Two weeks after the elections, Netanyahu’s criminal trial on charges of bribery and breach of trust begins. He doesn’t have to resign unless he is convicted and if that conviction is upheld through the appeals process.
And, once the dust has settled on this election, how does Netanyahu plan to defeat his main rival and his potential nemesis – the Israeli justice system?
Palace announcement trumps Mahathir Mohamad’s bid to return to power after his resignation amid political crisis.
Varadkar submitted his resignation to Michael D Higgins, the president of Ireland, on Thursday night after a tempestuous but inconclusive sitting of Dáil Éireann, which met for the first time since the 8 February election. It adjourned until 5 March, giving party leaders three weeks to try to form a ruling coalition.
He also promised to hold an early election free from “the influence of money, weapons, and foreign interference” and called on protesters to give his government a chance in spite of a “crisis of confidence in everything related to politics” that he blamed on the failures of his predecessors.
Sunak has long been seen as a rising star and is the person in the Treasury who No. 10 preferred to deal with. Sunak will be helped by the new No. 10/No. 11 special adviser unit. Sunak is a Brexiteer who has good relations both with the Prime Minister and his team. One insider suggests that their relationship will be a friendly one similar to that of David Cameron and George Osborne. What’s clear is that today’s changes mean No. 10 has taken control.
Although Mr Cummings was not in the room during fraught discussions with Mr Johnson, sources said it was ‚obvious‘ who was behind the move.
Following more than an hour of frantic wrangling, Mr Javid finally resigned in protest.
‚The prime minister said he had to fire all his special advisers and replace them with Number 10 special advisers to make it one team,‘ a source close to Mr Javid said.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid has resigned from his role in Boris Johnson’s cabinet.
It is believed Mr Javid was asked to stay on in his role, but resigned in protest at being asked to fire all his advisors.
Rishi Sunak has been appointed as the new Chancellor.
The prime minister will use a speech on Monday to toughen his stance ahead of trade talks following the UK’s formal withdrawal from the bloc.
EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier will also set out his approach to the talks, which are due to start next month.
Allawi would run the country until early elections can be held. He must form a new government within a month.
Tonight we are leaving the European Union
For many people this is an astonishing moment of hope, a moment they thought would never come
And there are many of course who feel a sense of anxiety and loss
And then of course there is a third group – perhaps the biggest – who had started to worry that the whole political wrangle would never come to an end
I understand all those feelings, and our job as the government – my job – is to bring this country together now and take us forward
And the most important thing to say tonight is that this is not an end but a beginning
This is the moment when the dawn breaks and the curtain goes up on a new act in our great national drama
And yes it is partly about using these new powers – this recaptured sovereignty – to deliver the changes people voted for
Earlier in 2019 September, the PM had again called on the protesters and environmentalists to open access to the mine.
Mahdi habe Pompeo gegenüber zudem erklärt, dass es einige US-Truppen gebe, die ohne Erlaubnis der Regierung ins Land gekommen seien. Auch US-Drohnen seien ohne Zustimmung der Regierung im Irak aktiv. Das stelle einen Verstoß gegen die Abkommen dar, hieß es weiter.
Die US-Truppen sind auf der Grundlage einer Vereinbarung mit der irakischen Regierung aus dem Jahr 2014 im Land, bei der es um den internationalen Kampf gegen die Dschihadistenmiliz „Islamischer Staat“ geht.
In a phone call with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi asked the United States to send a delegation to Iraq to set up a mechanism for U.S. troop withdrawal from the country, a statement from the prime minister’s office said Friday.
The request followed a vote by the Iraqi parliament to expel thousands of U.S. troops, a direct consequence of a U.S. drone attack that killed senior Iranian commander Qasem Soleimani and nine companions in Baghdad a week ago.
Defence secretary Ben Wallace updates MPs – returning to the House of Commons after their Christmas break – on the latest in the Middle East, following the assassination of Iran military leader Qassem Suleimani last week. He makes the statement in place of Boris Johnson, who is chairing a meeting of the UK national security council to discuss the crisis.
Mr Corbyn branded the drone strike on the leader of Iran’s feared Quds Force an “assassination” and told the House of Commons that it was widely regarded as illegal.
And he accused the prime minister of hiding away from scrutiny after Mr Johnson sent defence secretary Ben Wallace to answer MPs’ questions on the 3 January killing in Baghdad.
In the absence of Mr Johnson, who is on a Caribbean holiday with his girlfriend Carrie Symonds, Defence minister Ben Wallace said Washington has a right to respond to earlier attacks from Iran that resulted in an assault on the US embassy in Baghdad.
In an extraordinary session, the lawmakers voted with majority in favor of passing a law requiring the government to cancel the request for assistance from the international coalition to fight Islamic State (IS) group due to the end of military operations and war in Iraq.
Parliamentary resolutions are nonbinding to the government, but Abdul-Mahdi had earlier urged parliament to take urgent measures and end the presence of foreign troops as soon as possible.
PM Abdel Mahdi strongly refused the attack. US didn’t care.
However, the KRG and the Iraqi federal government reached an oil-for-budget deal at the end of November, thereby removing one of the biggest points of contention. This was done under the Kurd-friendly Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi, who has since stepped down from the post in the wake of widespread calls for his resignation.
Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit on Thursday sought to avoid offering his legal opinion on whether or not Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could be tasked with forming a government with criminal charges hanging over him.
Mandelblit was earlier in the week requested by Israel’s High Court of Justice by the court to submit his opinion on the matter next week.
He said that he would rather step down than pick a new prime minister rejected by demonstrators but as the constitution does not allow him to reject a nomination he would resign.
Parliament will now have to meet to discuss and vote on the resignation. If they endorse the move, Mr Salih will step down.
“President Barham Salih has his own candidate, the current head of intelligence Mustafa al-Kadhemi. There is no veto on the personality of Kadhemi; however, the serious problem is the attempt of the President to dismiss the power of the Parliament and his rejection of the will of the largest parliamentary coalition”, said the source.
Sources in Najaf stated “the Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Sistani has repeatedly stated that power emanates from the people and not from the President. It is the people and their representatives who make the decisions and if a new Prime Minister is rejected by the people he will not last long in office”.
Results expected early Friday morning after a reported 49 percent of the party’s 116,048 members cast votes
Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, who earlier this year recommended to indict the long-serving prime minister on charges of bribery and fraud, has been ordered by the High Court to come up with a legal opinion on the matter 48 hours before the court assembles to debate it.
Traders who thought Johnson would use his considerable parliamentary majority to cut ties with the Brexit hard-liners in his party and deliver a soft divorce were “caught by surprise,” said Kit Juckes, chief foreign-exchange strategist at Societe Generale SA.
It was the currency’s biggest slump in a year.
TRIUMPHANT Boris Johnson has met the Queen at Buckingham Palace after his historic election win.
The Prime Minister declared that his party has „smashed the roadblock“ and „ended the gridlock“ as he hailed the biggest Conservative majority since the 1980s.
Rinne resigned on Tuesday after a party in the coalition, the Centre Party, said it had lost confidence in him following his handling of a postal strike.
According to Harel, Israel is afraid that the US will desert the Iran issue while America is worried Israel may carry out a unilateral attack against Tehran, forcing Washington into a war.
Harel warned that it is impossible to separate the internal Israeli chaos from the Iran issue; in particular with regards to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s indictment and his failure to form a government.
Abdul Mahdi’s decision came in response to a call for a change of leadership on Friday by Iraq’s top Shi’ite Muslim cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the statement said.
„In response to this call, and in order to facilitate it as quickly as possible, I will present to parliament a demand (to accept) my resignation from the leadership of the current government,“ said the statement, signed by Abdul Mahdi.
Israel’s top court on Sunday dismissed a petition to order Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to step aside after his indictment on corruption charges.
Alluding to Netanyahu’s role in the right-wing campaign against former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in the run-up to his assassination, he said: „Someone who spearheaded the harsh and painful campaign against Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin of blessed memory, which ended in a national disaster, should know that dangerous words are doomed to turn into deadly bullets.“ He added that „a true patriot“ would not „hold Israeli citizens hostage to his legal battle.“
Senior Likud member Gideon Sa’ar has called for a Likud leadership primary, criticizing Benjamin Netanyahu’s attack on Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit and the claim that the decision to indict the prime minister on corruption charges is „an attempted coup.“
„Whoever heads the executive branch can’t say that Mendelblit’s decision is an attempt of a legal coup. That’s not right, it’s not responsible,“ Sa’ar, seen as Netanyahu’s main rival in the party, told Channel 12 News on Saturday.
Gantz said after meeting with Netanyahu in a statement on his twitter that „Israel needs a broad and liberal unity government, which will consist primarily of the two major white-led political parties that won the elections.“ According to him, it is „a government whose founding lines will be set on the basis of the major parties and therefore cannot be built on one or the other sectoral bloc.“
„Our rally is against the conflict of interests of the businessman and prime minister Babis. He should either get rid of his Agrofert [agricultural] holding and media groups belonging to him or resign from the post of the prime minister“,
“As the prime minister of Israel I shall aspire and act to turn this rally into an official rally shared by all of Israeli society,” said Gantz, who was asked in October to form the next government, after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu returned his mandate to President Reuven Rivlin. “I want this square to be balanced, for all the streams to find their place in it and to sincerely mourn this debased murder.”
„What has been happening in the past few days must be stopped,“ Gantz said. „It’s unacceptable that while we are talking about [forming] a government to rehabilitate diplomacy, to back the Israel Defense Forces, to empower the law enforcement institutions and safeguard a free press, Netanyahu, who is in charge of all these systems, is spreading blatant messages against them.“
Kahol Lavan leader Benny Gantz met on Thursday with the leaders of the Joint List, an alliance of four Arab-majority parties, as part of his effort to form a governing coalition after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu failed to do so.
Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri announced on Tuesday that he was headed to the Baabda Palace to submit his cabinet’s resignation to President Michel Aoun „after having reached a dead-end, and sensing the need for a positive shock.”
Yair Lapid, the No. 2 on the Kahol Lavan roster, said at the party meeting that a government can’t be created in the space of 48 hours, and that all Netanyahu had to agree to was to be second in the rotation – i.e., to agree that Gantz serve as prime minister first, then Netanyahu. But what Netanyahu wants is a third election, Lapid said.
“That’s what his lawyers suggested to him, that’s what he needs because of the indictments,” Lapid said.
According to reports in the Hebrew media, Gantz could offer Netanyahu a “compromise deal” that would force him to choose between including his religious allies in the coalition, and being prime minister first in any rotation deal.
However the Government could table a vote of no confidence against itself, which only requires a plurality to pass.
If this passes Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn, or any other party leader, would have 14 days to form an alternative Government.
Only if these efforts failed would there be a general election.
The political whirlwind and the desire to avoid another election might cause Gantz to forget the reason his party won 33 Knesset seats and became the largest political party in Israel, namely that the people are sick and tired of Netanyahu. They are sick not only of the abundant criminal accusations now under review at a hearing, but also of his corrupt and cynical politics, which have put his personal survival above any other value, and in the name of which he has pitted parts of Israeli society against each other.
Even if he is indicted, Mr Netanyahu intends to stay on as prime minister. The law does not require him to step down until a final conviction.
Boris has finally presented his detailed proposals to abolish the Backstop in a letter to the EU. The ERG and DUP are behind the proposals, now over to Varadkar…
Read the proposals in full below…
MK Ofer Shelah of Kahol Lavan, who was interviewed after Tibi, said he did not rule out such a proposal.
When asked how he could both obey the law and ensure Brexit by October 31, Mr Johnson said: „If you’ll forgive me, I don’t want to tip the hand of the UK government more than Parliament has already required us to do so.“
He’s repeatedly referred to the new law as the „Surrender Bill“, arguing it means the EU won’t give us a good deal as they think we’ll be forced to delay.
A No10 source said today: „If the question is ‚is he going to stop talking about the Surrender Bill‘ the answer is ‚absolutely no he’s not‘.“
Yes, this initiative of yours, Mr. President, is very grave indeed! You are dividing the country on an ethnic basis, you are placing one people above another, one public above another, one group above another, when your job is to say loud and clear: They are all my sons. And for this you do not have a mandate. You do not have a mandate to divide the country between Jews and Arabs. You do not have a mandate to exclude a fifth of the population.
Not only did the court declare the prime minister’s action unlawful, it also declared the order itself, which Queen Elizabeth II issued at Mr. Johnson’s request, “unlawful, void, and of no effect.” The request, said the court’s president, Baroness Brenda Hale, might as well have been a “blank sheet of paper.”
Stephen Tierney, a professor of constitutional theory at Edinburgh University, said it was “astonishing” that the court had ruled decisively that it “can review something as fundamental as that, done by Her Majesty, as unlawful.”
What that means is that prorogation can be limited by statute and the courts would enforce that statute. I doubt anyone disputes that. What it does not mean, yet what has happened, is that in the absence of such a statute, the ‘Supreme’ Court can step in and invent one. So lawyers and judges have, step by step, decided to give themselves more and more power.
No one expected them to do what they did today. No one expected it to be unanimous – which perhaps hurts the most.
Less than a week after his impressive electoral achievement, the head of the largest Knesset faction, Kahol Lavan leader Benny Gantz, conceded his right to be the first to try and form a coalition government. The explanation given by “party sources” for this concession is that Gantz prefers to wait for Netanyahu to try first and fail.
Regrettably, this lame excuse is unconvincing. This move looks like a capitulation without a fight, an admission that the right wing’s long-standing tactic of delegitimizing parties representing Arab society succeeded.
At the Labour conference Jeremy Corbyn has taken to the stage.
He says the supreme court judgment demonstrates Boris Johnson’s contempt for parliament.
He says he will write to the Speaker demanding an urgent recall of parliament.
He says a Labour government would want to be held to account. It would not bypass democracy.
And he says Boris Johnson should “in the historic words, consider his position”.
That means he thinks Johnson should resign.
– The Supreme Court handed down landmark judgment at 10.30am today
– Justices asked to decide whether Boris Johnson gave unlawful advice to Queen
– Judges had 4 options including forcing MPs to return to Parliament this week
– Lady Hale revealed all 11 unanimously agreed to nuclear option of recalling MPs
– PM won’t resign and says MPs have had years to discuss direction of Brexit
Announcing the result, Lady Hale said: „The court is bound to conclude, therefore, that the decision to advise Her Majesty to prorogue Parliament was unlawful because it had the effect of frustrating or preventing the ability of Parliament to carry out its constitutional functions without reasonable justification.“
Netanyahu getting a first nod from the president would land a harsh blow on the center-left’s morale, which could facilitate Netanyahu’s plan to divide the party from within. The nightmarish vision of Netanyahu settling back in the driver’s seat and recklessly pushing the gas pedal to reach his target would make a mockery of his clear-cut defeat in last Tuesday’s election. While Gantz and his colleagues rejoice over sucker Netanyahu supposedly falling into their well-laid trap, their supporters will see them as naive novices who could soon add insult to injury by reneging on their main pledge not to participate in his coalition.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) shakes hands with Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz (R) as President Reuven Rivlin looks on, at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, on September 23, 2019.
Mr. Ashkenazi and Meir Dagan, who was the head of the Israeli intelligence service, the Mossad, at the time, would later say that this was an attempt at “stealing a war,” Ms. Dayan reported, because in their view such an order required a decision of the full cabinet, not the smaller group in the meeting, who were then known as the forum of seven.
Both Mr. Ashkenazi, who is now retired, and Mr. Dagan, who stepped down after the meeting, have become vocal critics of plans for a unilateral Israeli attack on Iran, and of Mr. Netanyahu and Mr. Barak’s aggressive approach.
Diskin’s remarks followed a furore over comments made on Wednesday by Israel’s serving military chief, Benny Gantz, which starkly contrasted with Netanyahu’s rhetoric on Iran. Gantz said he did not believe the Iranian leadership was prepared to „go the extra mile“ to acquire nuclear weapons because it was „composed of very rational people“ who understood the consequences.
The Israeli military chief described the Iranian government as “rational” in interviews published Wednesday and said he did not believe it would build a nuclear bomb, appearing to put some distance between himself and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
“I believe he would be making an enormous mistake, and I don’t think he will want to go the extra mile,” the chief of staff of the Israeli Defense Force, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, told the left-leaning newspaper Haaretz, referring to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Balad announces it won’t back Gantz, leaving Kahol Lavan with 54 recommendations, while 55 lawmakers said they would recommend Netanyahu ■ Rivlin summons Gantz, Netanyahu for meeting after consultations
September 22, 2019
By the end of Sunday’s consultations, former IDF chief Benny Gantz secured more recommendations than Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu angrily fired back at the Arab Joint List for recommending rival Benny Gantz to be the next prime minister, insisting if given the mandate he would work to form a „broad national unity government.“
Israel’s Arab parties on Sunday broke longstanding precedent by endorsing former IDF chief Benny Gantz for prime minister after last week’s hard-fought elections.
The Israeli government has done everything in its power to reject those of us who are Arab Palestinian citizens, but our influence has only grown. We will be the cornerstone of democracy.
Rare move by Joint List in bid to ‚end the Netanyahu era‘ could give Kahol Lavan leader first chance at forming coalition ■ Lieberman: ‚Joint List members are enemies‘
All eyes are on Yisrael Beiteinu’s Avigdor Lieberman and the Joint List, comprised of four Arab-majority parties, in order to gauge Kahol Lavan leader Benny Gantz’s chances at unseating Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Neither parties have announced officially whether they would recommend Gantz to the president, and are expected to make their decisions public later Sunday.
In 1992, Knesset members from Hadash and the United Arab List backed Yitzhak Rabin, who wasn’t their cup of tea, as prime minister. This eventually led to the allocation of significant funds for the benefit of the Arab community – without mentioning the mutual recognition between Israel and the PLO, and the Oslo Accords.