tv BBC News at Ten BBC News September 11, 2019 10:00pm-10:30pm BST
tonight at ten, demands to recall parliament, after scotland's highest court declares the five—week suspension to be unlawful. the ruling could have huge ramifications at westminster and beyond if it's upheld by the uk supreme court next week. judges at the court of session in edinburgh decided that borisjohnson‘s intention was to prevent parliament from doing its job ahead of brexit. the advice given by the government to her majesty the queen to prorogue parliament from ninth september to 14th october was unlawful and that therefore, the prorogation itself is unlawful. downing street said it was disappointed by the ruling, and insisted the prime minister's decision had been lawful.
outside the houses of parliament, mps gathered to demand an immediate recall, saying the suspension was no longer valid. we have shown in the last ten days that we are prepared to work together across parties in the national interest and our resolve remains absolutely firm that we will do that. and this evening, the government finally published details of its contingency plans for food, medicines and other supplies in the event of a no—deal brexit. and the other main stories on tonight's programme. chanting: we want ashley out, said we want ashley out! shareholders at sports direct show their anger at founder mike ashley, after a series of crises at the company. and could this planet, 111 light years away, be home to alien life? and coming up on sportsday on bbc news. paying the price — after a disappointing ashes, jason roy is dropped as england make changes for the final test.
good evening from westminster, where mps today demanded the immediate recall of parliament, following a landmark ruling by scotland's highest civil court. the court of session in edinburgh ruled that the prime minister's decision to suspend the westminster parliament for five weeks was unlawful. they said they were unanimous in their belief that borisjohnson had been motivated by the "improper purpose of stymieing parliament". the case now goes to the uk supreme court next week. downing street said it was disappointed by the ruling and that the prorogation of parliament had been "legal and necessary". our political editor laura kuenssberg reports on today's ruling
and its implications. judgment day. in scotland's court of session, a clear verdict on borisjohnson. each opinion expresses the view that the advice given by the government to her majesty the queen to prorogue parliament from 9th september to 14th october was unlawful and that therefore, the prorogation itself is unlawful. in plain language, thejudges concluded number ten broke the law by telling the queen they wanted to suspend parliament for a break before unveiling their plans for government. cheering. when opposition mps, jubilant at the ruling, suspected, in fact, they wanted to close down parliament to avoid difficult questions on brexit. for every moment parliament remains prorogued, the british government are breaking the law. so we, as politicians, are calling for parliament to be recalled, so that we can get on with scrutinising what this government is up to in relation to brexit.
the court did not specifically order the government to open up the commons. but some mps who had packed upjust yesterday rushed back to demand it gets going again, taking their places in protest on the green benches in the empty chamber, with an impromptu rally at the doors. we have shown in the last ten days that we are prepared to work together across parties in the national interest, and our resolve remains absolutely firm that we will do that. what do you actually propose to do now? are you all going to stay here in the palace of westminster? are you going to go and sit in the chamber? we're going to go back into the building. we all have jobs to be doing, meetings to be taking place, constituents to be representing, and ultimately we will find other ways of holding this government to account. labour, too, is pressing the prime ministerfor a return. whatever happens next week, we will continue to press for parliament to be recalled, so that we can question the prime minister. hang on, though. scottish law is different to english
law, and the high court in london reached the opposite conclusion in a similar case brought by the businesswoman gina millerjust days ago, deciding the prime minister's decision to close the commons was actually none of the court's business. number ten will appeal. a final verdict will be given by the uk supreme court next tuesday. but this is as extraordinary as it is serious. the prime minister's actions are found to have been against the law, downing street ruled to have misled the queen. less than two months into office, borisjohnson has hurtled into a genuine constitutional clash. number ten denied they'd suggested the scottishjudges had been somehow biased and, for now, cabinet ministers are reluctant to be drawn into the tangle. i'm not going to comment on an ongoing legislative process. it's a judicial issue and no doubt it will be appealed at the supreme court. government insiders are curiously relaxed about the ruling and some mps and ministers reckon they'll
still have many of the public on their side. the government have acted legally, constitutionally and in normality. farcical. absolutely and completely, not for the government, for the whole place, you know. the fact of the matter is the people said, "we want to leave the european union" and this place says, "we don't." that frustration is what downing street's banking on. a serious and important defeat in court for them today, but it seems lining up to take on parliament is almost part of their ruthless approach. laura kuenssberg, bbc news, westminster. as we heard, today's verdict in scotland, in the court of session, also goes against the ruling of the high court in london last week, which decided this was a political matter and not a matterfor thejudges. our legal correspondent clive coleman explains the legal case and what's going to happen next. two courts considering a point of massive national and constitutional importance
and coming to two completely different conclusions. scotland's highest civil court ruled that borisjohnson‘s advice to the queen to suspend, known as proroguing parliament, was unlawful because it stymied parliamentary scrutiny. that's because pa rliament‘s role in scrutinising the government is a central pillar of our constitution, which the scottish judges said followed naturally from the principles of democracy and the rule of law. but the high court here in london says that advice, given by the prime minister to the queen to suspend parliament, is political, not legal, and that's something the government has been arguing from the get—go. thejudges here said it's not a proper manner to be brought before the courts, because there are no legal standards against which tojudge it. but the scottish court is an appeal court, so its ruling outranks the high court.
but now both cases are hurtling here, to the highest court in the land, the uk supreme court, where, in a hearing set to start on tuesday, the contradiction between those two judgments will be resolved. and there will be a definitive ruling on whether the prime minister borisjohnson acted unlawfully or not. and that will determine whether mps and parliament sit in the lead—up to the uk leaving the eu. and that's really our constitution in action, independentjudges acting through the mechanism ofjudicial review can halt the might of government in its tracks if what ministers have done is unlawful. because, as the lawyers like to say, "be you ever so mighty, the law is above you." clive coleman with his assessment of the legal process. let's talk to our scotland editor sarah smith at the court of session in edinburgh. some more detail about this highly
significant ruling that was passed by thejudges significant ruling that was passed by the judges today. yes, fascinating if you look at exactly what the three judges at the court of session actually had to say in their ruling because while it does not explicitly say that boris johnson has either lied to the queen or try to mislead voters, if you drill down into the complex legal jargon, you will say that is pretty much exactly what they are saying. borisjohnson has always maintained it is perfectly normal for a new government to prorogue parliament and that it is nonsense to suggest he is trying to undermine democracy. today, the three judges he is trying to undermine democracy. today, the threejudges in he is trying to undermine democracy. today, the three judges in the court of session basically said that they did not believe him and that they think he is trying to avoid parliamentary scrutiny in the run—up to the uk leaving the eu. they were unanimous in theirfinding that he was motivated by, and i will quote from their ruling, "the improper
purpose of stymieing parliament", and that is the reason they found he was acting unlawfully. one of the threejudges at the was acting unlawfully. one of the three judges at the court of session even three judges at the court of session eve n we nt three judges at the court of session even went on to say that boris johnson was motivated by, "an egregious case of a clear failure to comply with generally accepted standards of behaviour of public authorities". so in essence, what you have got is three really senior judges saying they don't believe the prime minister's reasons for why he wa nted prime minister's reasons for why he wanted to suspend parliament, and they think he did mislead the queen when he asked her to prorogue parliament. sarah, thank you for more detail on the ruling, sarah smith our scotland editor, in edinburgh. the government has tonight published documents relating to operation yellowhammer, the contingency plans in case the uk leaves the european union without a deal. mps demanded the release of the documents last week. our economics editor faisal islam is with me. he has been looking at them. what are the main points? these are quite
are the main points? these are quite a sobering few pages for the government but also for viewers at home who can now read this. the core of this, that shows the potential impacts of a worst—case no deal across sectors, is the assumptions about the flow of traffic through the channel tunnel and between dover and calais, and that about half of that traffic, over half of it, won't flow which has a knock—on impact on food, for example, certain types of fresh food supply will decrease, will reduce availability and choice of products and will increase price, " low of products and will increase price, "low income groups will be disproportionately affected by new price rises", but they do say there won't be an overall impact on fuels of —— food supply. on the issue of fuel, "regional traffic disruption stretching back to the m25 in kent, caused by border delays, could affect fuel distribution and would disrupt the supply of fuel in london and the south—east. surprisingly on theissue and the south—east. surprisingly on the issue of social care, an increase in inflation following the
eu exit would significantly impact social care providers due to increasing staff and supply costs and may lead to provide a failure. that is three areas. many other sectors impacted. now this is out in the open after mps demanded it, how is the government responding? is it playing down the impact of what? originally, they did play it down, they said it was an old document, number ten sources suggested it was lea ked number ten sources suggested it was leaked by old cabinet ministers. the date on this document is very clearly the 2nd of august so when it was first percolated out there, it was first percolated out there, it was only a couple of weeks old and it is only five weeks old now. the government argues that they have made some progress, but this is the latest iteration of the reasonable worst—case assumptions. it should be said that i have been told that there was a version of this document that was entitled best case scenario and the government says that is a technical expiration of something. —— base case scenario. there are also very concerning assumptions
about northern ireland, disruptions to key sectors and job losses likely to key sectors and job losses likely to result in protest and direct action with road blockages particularly severe in border communities. very serious for the government but also now out in the open. thank you forjoining us. faisal islam, our economics editor with detail from the operation yellowhammer document. while the government's parliamentary strategy is being questioned by the courts, labour's policy on brexit is also under increased scrutiny, with divisions at senior levels of the party. the leaderjeremy corbyn was forced to dismiss calls from his deputy, tom watson, for another eu referendum before any general election. our deputy political editorjohn pienaar looks at the brexit tensions within the labour party. they‘ re leader and deputy of the same party, though today you'd hardly know it. jeremy corbyn keeping open the question, does labour back leave or remain. and tom watson facing the other way. today, unlike his leader, he wanted another referendum before the election and a campaign to stay in. his way to win back lost
supporters at election time. they just want us to take an unequivocal position that whatever happens, we'll fight to remain, and to sound like we mean it. and if we did, we could win, whereas if we don't, i fear we won't. mr corbyn doesn't want to upset to leave or remain voters, even if that upsets his deputy. it's tom's view. i don't accept it, and i don't agree with it. our priority is to get a general election in order to give the people a chance to elect a government that cares for them, not themselves. at the tuc in brighton, mr corbyn has gathered among union leaders. his biggest supporter‘s counter strike at tom watson wasn't just political, it was personal. now and again tom pops up from wherever he's been hiding and comes up with something instead of supporting his leader, it's normally to try and undermine him. i don't know why he does it.
less and less people listen to him. if he wants to continue to languish on the fringes of the labour party, that's up to him, but his views don't really matter anymore. yet many of mr corbyn‘s previously uncritical supporters want labour to come out as an anti—brexit party, no ifs, no buts. privately, his inner circle see tom watson as a political enemy posing as a loyal colleague, yet this rift mirrors a broader split between the leader and many of the party's members in the country. in leeds north west, labour's main challenger are the anti—brexit lib dems. could clearer support for staying in the eu help win over and win back supporters? hopefully, yeah. i'd like to think it would. i think there's a lot of people that were misinformed and i think now, with everything that's happened with brexit, i think it's time that... yeah, i think we should remain. i think it would be welcomed.
why? i think there's a feeling that we're proud to be european. i normally vote labour, but this time i will vote for either nigel farage or borisjohnson, or whoever wants to get us out of europe, because watson and jeremy corbyn are just useless. they don't believe in democracy or the will of the people. jeremy corbyn may well get his way in this struggle, but labour's annual conference is just over a week away and the strains will be on show. john pienaar, bbc news, westminster. the brexit party leader nigel farage has offered an electoral deal with the conservatives, which would see the parties agreeing not to stand against each other in dozens of seats at a general election, so that support for brexit wasn't diluted. number ten has dismissed the idea, but mr farage insists it could work and defeat labour. our political correspondent alex forsyth was at this evening's brexit party rally in sedgefield. her report contains
flash photography. look who's gearing upfora campaign. tonight nigel farage was targeting labour voters in the north—east, trying to win over disillusioned leavers. we are in all—out political war with the labour party. he says neither main party can be trusted with brexit, yet today he offered the tories a pact — if they give the brexit party a clear run in labour areas, his party will stand aside in tory strongholds. number ten, though, said he's not fit and proper to be allowed near government. the whole point of this nonaggression pact is that borisjohnson wins a big majority, beats the labour party, gets a proper, clean brexit delivered. but that doesn't change the fact number ten has effectively said no chance. well, if number ten says no chance then one thing is very, very clear — number ten will not win a majority in the election. number ten might disagree, but this party has quickly attracted support from brexit backers. the brexit party has got more
of a chance than any other party of actually getting us out of europe. i'm from a mining time and ultimately conservatives don't stand a chance there. but support for nigel farage hasn't easily translated into westminster seats. he himself has never won one. much would depend on the timing of the election. if we've left the eu, it could kill this party's key message. if not, they could take crucial votes from labour and the tories. stockton south is the kind of marginal seat the conservatives need for an election victory. most people here opted to leave, so if the brexit party stand they could eat into tory support. but at this fashion shop in the high street, owner alison, who did vote leave, isn't convinced. what do you think about nigel farage and his brexit party? laughter. would you ever consider voting for him? no! no? no. what would put you off? i think him himself puts me off. at a nearby deli, joe and van
are both leave voters. what you've got to ask yourself is, what policies do the brexit party have other than brexit. once that happens, they become a little bit redundant. i agree with a lot of what nigel farage says, but i'm not sure i would vote that way. what would stop you? ijust don't think... i don't think they're ready to take on and run the country. if they were going to go hand in hand with the conservatives, then possibly. but with their offer refused, that seems a way off, and the race still on to win round brexit backers. alex forsyth, bbc news, sedgefield. after such a momentous and eventful day in this bumpy brexit process, our deputy political editorjohn pienaar is with me. the direct question, where does it leave the prime minister? it leaves boris johnson in strange and unexplored territory. it has been extraordinary
to see a conservative prime minister, historically a defender of british institutions and upholder of the rule of law, found by a senior court to have used false arguments to shut down parliament. a brexiteer minister this evening pointedly said many people would doubt the impartiality of those judges. by the way, the justice impartiality of those judges. by the way, thejustice secretary has reported that idea. it is true, as we saw in my report, that tensions are high up in the labour party, but it's striking that some of those closest to boris johnson it's striking that some of those closest to borisjohnson believe the tensions and strains have torn at british politics and public life could work in borisjohnson‘s favour and help him present himself as being on the side of the people against all comers in favour of brexit, and that means against parliament, the courts and the whole establishment. it's an extraordinary position for the prime minister to be in. it's worth looking briefly at the potential cost of all this. faisal islam discussed the yellowhammer papers. a government source said to me this evening up they were worst—case scenarios and based on out of date information and
there will be an update soon. but if any part of this was a real risk, and it is admitted there could be, many people would ask, how could it be right in principle to shut parliament for five weeks. whatever happens in the supreme court next week, whatever happens with brexit or the election that's coming, or any conceivable election soon, the splits in this country, that have torn britain from top to bottom, will not and cannot heal any time soon. john pienaar, deputy political editor, with his analysis after this rather significant day. and that's it from westminster tonight. in just a few days' time, the uk supreme court will make a vitally important ruling on whether these houses of parliament were suspended lawfully or not. but for now, let's join reeta for the day's other news. shareholders in the company sports direct have made clear their unhappiness with its founder mike ashley — by voting in large numbers against him being re—elected
as director. mr ashley owns just over 60% of the company, so he was ultimately backed to continue in the role, but without the support of a third of independent shareholders who voted. more from our business correspondent, emma simpson. chanting: we want ashley out, said we want ashley out! the sports direct agm, it's never dull. shareholders had a long list of complaints, including last months's huge, unexpected tax bill from the belgian authorities. the boss later told me he's not happy, either. if i were a shareholder, i would be very frustrated by those events. let's be crystal clear, it is not acceptable, yeah? when i heard the night before the results about a belgian tax investigation, it was over 600 million, i think i had to ask three times and i even had to question the currency, "what are you talking about?" and questions, too, about his spending spree, from evans cycles to jack wills and house of fraser. so why is he expanding on the high street while others are in retreat?
i don't think you see next piling out. primark piling out. i don't think you see tk maxx piling out. i think you will see it's a lot, lot smaller pool, a lot smaller pond but the fish are going to be enormous and i want to be one of those enormous fish. a lot of people think you've bitten off more than you can chew, the business has too much on its plate. correct. i agree with all of the above but it is like buses, sometimes, they all come at once. it does not come in a perfect flow. life isn't perfect. trouble is, house of fraser is still losing millions of pounds a week. the jury's out. the jury's definitely out but i'm a definite believer. before anybody thinks anything, my wealth is in that strategy. not a fraction of it, 60% of that sd share price is one individual, who, by the way, does not get a dividend and does not get paid, and he's bet the farm on this and he's not going to back down until he wins. his message?
"bear with me", but mike ashley is under pressure. tonight, sports direct doesn't have an auditor for its accounts. it's a legal requirement, and he is now in a race to find one. emma simpson, bbc news. coastguards have picked up two small boats in the channel, carrying 21 migrants, after 86 people were intercepted trying to make the same crossing yesterday. although the numbers remain considerably lower than those trying to get in hidden in lorries and other vehicles, it brings the total number of people attempting the channel crossing this year to more than 1,100. our correspondent colin campell has been following the story. rescued in rough seas from sinking inflatable dinghies, the migrants wrapped in blankets were pulled to safety ten miles off dover. they'd attempted to cross the english channel in two small boats, starting the perilousjourney in the dark. this was a tragedy that was very narrowly avoided. they were in an unorthodox craft, a very small craft. they were taking on water,
they were wet, they were cold, they were frightened, one of them was unconscious. there was a young child on board with his mother. in need of urgent medical attention, six were taken by the rnli to ramsgate harbour. lucky to be alive, it seems one of the migrants was airlifted to hospital in a critical condition. yesterday, the channel was much calmer and a record number of migrants arrived in small boats. abandoned on a sussex beach, this is one of the six boats that was used. 86 migrants in total made it across, claiming to be from iran, afghanistan, pakistan and the philippines. what i saw was them just immediately get out of the boat and run up the beach, and they ran across into the fields and then just tried to get across over the marsh. all were later detained by border officials. where are you from? you're iranian? more than 1200 migrants have reached the uk by crossing the channel this year.
although it's a relatively small proportion of the number arriving illegally, many are concerned at the dangers and risks posed by this route. last week in dunkirk, i found migrants waiting for smugglers to get them to the uk. this 19—year—old from iraq was refused asylum in holland. there is a boat, there is a truck, and when i see which one is available, i'll enter with it. but maybe a boat. you'd be willing to get on board a boat? yeah. it's dangerous, but i have no another choice. some say smugglers are seeking to drum up business in the migrant camps by falsely claiming brexit will tighten up security. smugglers, you know, because of the uncertainty of the situation, say to migrants, you know, if there is a brexit, if the uk leaves the eu, you will not ever be able to cross the channel. i mean, it's a lie. using drones and night—vision equipment, french police are patrolling beaches where the migrant boats are being launched. they say they're doing all they can.
it is a battle to stop desperate people who are, it seems, willing to risk it all. colin campbell, bbc news, ramsgate. the body of zimbabwe's former president robert mugabe has been flown back to the country. the 95—year—old died last week while in singapore, where he'd been undergoing medical treatment. his state funeral will take place on saturday, although his family and the government have yet to agree where he will be buried. let's take a look at some of today's other news. university leaders have welcomed government plans to allow international students to stay in britain for up to two years after graduating, to find work. a four—month limit was introduced in 2012, amid concerns that the system was being abused. the government says today's decision will help talented students build successful careers here, and that it demonstrates the uk's global outlook. a baby boy pulled out of a river in greater manchester, has died. the child, believed to be nearly a year old, was pulled this
afternoon from the river irwell in radcliffe, but died a short time later in hospital. a 22—year—old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder. a planet that is 650 million million miles away could tell us if there's life out there somewhere else in the universe. uk scientists announced a breakthrough today about this planet, saying it has both water and the right temperature to potentially sustain life. pallab ghosh has the story. the night sky is littered with stars. around them are planets. could some of them be like the earth? scientists think that this one, which is 650 million million miles away, has the potential to support life. astronomers have discovered more than 4,000 planets orbiting distant stars. the new one is about the right distance from its sun to be able to support life. its temperature is between 0—40 celsius. it's around twice the size
of our own earth and it has an atmosphere that we now know contains water. so, the big question is whether there really are living organisms on this world. light from the planet's sun filters through its atmosphere, before it reaches the earth. that light contains a faint imprint of the chemicals in it. in this case, up to half of it is made up of water. detailed analysis of the starlight, published in the journal nature astronomy, shows this peak, where the light has been absorbed by water vapour. all of a sudden, we have the possibility in the next decade to understand what is the nature of this world, how they formed, how they evolved and, in some cases, whether they can support life. i think it's just mind—blowing. telescopes are becoming increasingly powerful. soon, they'll be able to detect gases in the atmospheres of distant planets that could only be produced by living organisms. within the next ten years or so, we will know whether there
are biomarkers or chemicals that are due to life in these atmospheres. scientists hope to discover, possibly quite soon, whether life is unique to earth or teeming on worlds across our galaxy. pallab ghosh, bbc news. that's it. now here on bbc one, time for the news where you are. hello, and welcome to sportsday. i'm chetan pathak. paying the price, after a dissapointing ashes jason roy is dropped as england make changes for the final test. a golden night for great britain at the world para—swimming
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