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Cameron ‘sought Queen’s help’ over Scottish independence
What’s in a quarter of an inch? Perhaps a lot, if the object being raised is the Queen’s eyebrow. Clearly, that’s what David Cameron thought when he asked royal officials whether the monarch might oblige to help him convince Scottish voters they ought to back his case for preserving the union in the run-up to the 2014 independence vote. Interviewed for a BBC documentary, Mr Cameron insists there was not “anything that would be in any way improper” about the request.
The Queen later urged people to “think very carefully about the future”. Scotland went on to reject independence by a margin of 55.3% to 44.7%, a result which Mr Cameron says left him “blissfully happy”. In the two-part documentary, Mr Cameron also says he ignored the reservations of colleagues to allow the Brexit referendum to take place and now “broods” every day about the vote and its consequences.
UK ‘has 12 days to set out Brexit plans’
The current occupant of No 10, Boris Johnson, continues to grapple with the consequences of that Brexit vote. Now Finland’s prime minister Antti Rinne says he and French President Emmanuel Macron are in agreement that the UK must produce written proposals for the new Brexit deal Mr Johnson insists he wants by the end of September, or else “it’s over”. A Downing Street source tells the BBC the government will “put forward proposals at the appropriate time”. Mr Johnson maintains the UK will exit the bloc, with or without a deal, on 31 October. The BBC’s political editor Laura Kuenssberg says it’s not the first time we’ve seen this “diplomatic dance”.
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Trudeau in 2001 ‘brownface’ photo
It has emerged that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wore “brownface” at an Arabian Nights-themed private school gala nearly two decades ago. In response to Time Magazine publishing the school yearbook photo, Mr Trudeau says he deeply regrets his actions and “should have known better”. With an election looming, rival party leaders are piling the pressure onto Mr Trudeau. The BBC’s Jessica Murphy had already been examining whether he could convince Canadians to rally behind him once again.
‘I am a voice for the dead’
By Swaminathan Natarajan, BBC World Service
“I saw my mum getting killed in front of my eyes. I couldn’t protect her. After that I saw two of my sisters getting killed.”
Taimour Abdulla Ahmed is thinking back to the evening in May 1988 when, as a 12 year-old, he and dozens of other children and women were forced into a desert pit and Iraqi soldiers opened fire on them. Their crime – they were Kurds in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.
Read the full article
What the papers say
A number of different stories lead Thursday’s papers. The Daily Express focuses on the demands of some EU leaders to see the UK’s Brexit proposals by the end of September. The Metro focuses on Boris Johnson being challenged during a hospital visit by the father of a sick child to – as the headline puts it: “Just sort our NHS”. Meanwhile, the Sun says the Loch Ness monster is, in fact, a large eel. Read the full review.
Robberies Rise blamed on police cuts and growing smartphone use
Chemicals Huge explosion at Turkish factory
Burger King Fast food giant ditches free toys
Hotels Booking.com still duping customers, says watchdog
If you see one thing today
‘I boxed through my pregnancy and won’
If you listen to one thing today
Is rock music doomed?
If you read one thing today
London Fashion Week: Gem helmets, upcycled trainers and Brexit
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Today The first round of golf’s PGA Championship takes place at Wentworth, Surrey.
22:00 Music’s Mercury Prize winner announced. Coverage on BBC Radio 6 Music from 19:00, and BBC Four from 21:00.
On this day
1985 A massive earthquake hits Mexico City, killing more than 10,000 people and injuring another 30,000.
Muddy results clearly show Israelis unfazed by prospect of life after Netanyahu (Times of Israel)
Finally, Facebook put someone in charge (Atlantic)
The Hyundai Mercury Prize 2019 judges on the albums that soundtracked their lives (NME)
Volunteers introduce World Cup fans to Japan… and themselves to rugby (Guardian)