UK & other courts
The Court of Appeal has ruled that the Government’s mass digital surveillance regime is unlawful, with the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act 2014 being “inconsistent with EU law” because of the lack of safeguards including the absence of “prior review by a court or independent administrative authority”. This is discussed by Liberty and reported in The Guardian.
Evaluation of UK’s international obligations
China’s state-run media has commended a “pragmatic” Theresa May for resisting calls to publicly challenge Beijing over human rights issues during her three-day visit.
UK’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU
The EU is to warn the British Government not to ignore the unfinished business of the EU divorce if it wants to secure a Brexit trade and transition deal. The Council of Europe has adopted negotiating directives on the transition period.
Theresa May is under growing pressure from both wings of her own party to offer more clarity in public about what Brexit deal Britain wants, or face the mounting risk of a no-confidence vote. Meanwhile senior minister Claire Perry has criticised Brexiteers who attacked the Government over ‘selling out’ over the £39bn divorce bill, calling them ‘swivel-eyed’. However David Lidington has urged the Conservatives to “come together in a spirit of mutual respect” as senior Tories continue to air their differences over Brexit.
Jeremy Corbyn has called key members of his shadow cabinet to an “away day” to re-examine the party’s policy and strategy on Brexit amid growing frustration in Labour ranks that it is failing to exploit mounting Tory turmoil over Europe.
The Financial Times reports that Britain is seeking powers to vet new EU laws agreed by the rest of the bloc during the transition period after Brexit, in a demand that risks setting the UK on a collision course with Brussels.
According to the Foreign Affairs Select Committee, Boris Johnson is failing to organise his own Whitehall department for Brexit and sending out mixed messages about the role of the Foreign Office in the UK withdrawal negotiations.
The EU has warned Britain that it faces gridlock in trade talks unless it spells out its Brexit goals.
Fabian Picardo has stated that Gibraltar can veto parts of any Brexit deal if it doesn’t like them, as a clause in its constitution gives it the right to choose its own terms for matters such as trade tariffs and regulations.
Slides published by the European Commission show that the EU intends to bind Brexit Britain to Europe’s economic model, from tax policy and state aid control to the labour rights of factory workers.
The main groups opposed to a hard Brexit are joining forces under the leadership of Chuka Umunna to push for the public’s voice to be heard on Theresa May’s final deal to leave the EU.