Priti Patel may lose her cabinet position over Israel trip
International development secretary Priti Patel may be sacked following revelations that she held unofficial meetings with Israeli officials while on a family holiday. Patel has apologised for meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in August, though more unsanctioned meetings are thought to have taken place in September too. Downing Street have reportedly reprimanded Patel and have cancelled some meetings that were set to happen during her current visit to Uganda. The BBC’s political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, has said that if May doesn’t sack Patel, it will be an “ongoing sore that smacks of weakness” and The Times reports that she is facing further accusations of a breach of the ministerial code for having Lord Polack – a corporate lobbyist – sit in on the meetings.
BBC, The Times
Prince Charles named in Paradise Papers leak
New documents in the Paradise Papers leak show that Prince Charles has invested millions into offshore businesses and funds, including a Bermuda-based company owned by a close friend. It is reported that the prince’s $100,000 stake was treated as “sensitive” by the the company board and kept highly secret, as the business invests in land to protect it from deforestation. Prince Charles is vocal on his support for environmental causes, so it is likely he indirectly financially benefitted from this investment. In response, Labour MP Margaret Hodge has called for more transparency of the prince’s finances to “ensure that the reputation and integrity of our royal family is protected.”
Welsh First Minister faces “deep unease” over death of former AM
Carwyn Jones is facing questions over the death of former communities secretary Carl Sargeant, who was sacked last Friday following allegations about his behaviour. It is thought that Sargeant killed himself. A former watchdog is calling for a review into the sacking procedure of the former AM, as it is alleged that Sargeant was never made aware of what the allegations actually were. Jenny Rathbone, AM for Cardiff Central, told the BBC, “Clearly he wasn't dealt with fairly in the most basic sense that if allegations are made against you, you must know what they are so that you can respond to them. That doesn't appear to have happened."
Two men arrested over the death of 26 Nigerian women and children
Police have arrested two men in Italy as part of the investigation into the deaths of 26 Nigerian women and children in the Mediterranean sea. It appears as though the women – some of who were as young as 14 – were abused and murdered as they attempted to cross the sea, and the two men are also accused of organising and trafficking another 150 people on two sunken boats – fifty-three people are still said to be missing. Survivors in the 375 people brought to Italy from the wreckages pointed out the men to the police, who have identified them as Libyan Al Mabrouc Wisam Harar and Egyptian Mohamed Ali Al Bouzid. It is not thought that the women were being trafficked for the sex trade, as the prefect of the Italian port where the bodies were brought, Salvatore Malfi explained, “Loading women onto a boat is too risky for the traffickers, as they could risk losing all of their “goods” in one fell swoop.”
Twitter gives most users 280 characters
Most Twitter users have been given 280 character tweets, in an increase from the usual 140. Twitter think the increased flexibility of tweets will encourage people to gain more followers and engage more with their fellow tweeters. Many users however are not happy with the change, urging Twitter to solve other problems – such as widespread harassment and abuse – before increasing character limit.