Children as young as 10 denied UK citizenship for failing ‘good character’ test

As many as 400 vulnerable children refused under controversial Home Office rules

Hundreds of vulnerable children as young as 10, who have spent most of their lives in the UK, are having their applications for British citizenship denied for failing to pass the government’s controversial “good character” test.

Figures published by the Home Office after a freedom of information request by the Guardian show that, on average, one child a week has had their application rejected over the last five years – with campaigners estimating that as many as 400 have been denied citizenship for failing to satisfy the good character requirement since it was introduced in 2006.

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Newly discovered photographs reveal family life of the Romanovs

Photographs of Tsar Nicholas II and family go on show at Science Museum in London

A sleigh ride in the snow, a hunting trip, a family outing on the lake dressed in cool white outfits with wide-brimmed hats: they look like the snaps of a carefree young family of the early 20th century, whose prosperous lives stretch out ahead of them.

In fact, these are intimate moments of the Romanov family who ruled Russia until the early 20th century, taken just a few years before their murder at the hands of the Bolsheviks.

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If ending Syria’s war means accepting Assad and Russia have won, so be it | Jonathan Steele

Western governments bear partial responsibility for prolonging this savage conflict. They must now push for peace

Just when it seems the Syrian war cannot get more complex, it does. In the skies above the Mediterranean, Syrian missiles shoot down an allied Russian surveillance plane after mistaking it for an Israeli bomber. In the Black Sea resort of Sochi, the Russian and Turkish presidents produce a plan for Turkey to use its control of part of Idlib province to disarm the worst jihadi extremists, including Chechens, Uighurs and other foreigners, as well as homegrown Syrian fanatics.

Two points stand out. One is the proliferation of outside interference in what began in 2011 as a purely Syrian campaign for reform. The other is the central and indispensable role that Russia now plays. On Syria’s south-western flank, it deploys military police near the Israeli-occupied Golan so as to prevent pro-Iranian militias from moving up and provoking Israeli forces. It turns a blind eye to Israeli air attacks on Iranian advisers in Syria. Only now with Monday’s loss of a Russian plane does it give the Israelis a public dressing-down for creating the confusion that led to the missile mistake.

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Fighting the world’s deadliest infectious disease: how to tackle TB

Experts say global action to combat TB, which causes almost two million deaths a year, is inadequate. What must change?

It is the world’s deadliest infectious disease, killing almost 2 million people a year – more than HIV and malaria combined – but the fight against tuberculosis (TB) is still severely underfunded and neglected by politicians and decision-makers, experts warn.

TB is both preventable and curable, but remains a significant public health risk and caused more than 10 million people to fall ill in 2016. This month, the United Nations general assembly will hold the first high-level meeting on the TB crisis, putting a spotlight on the disease 25 years after it was declared a global emergency. Ahead of the event, the Guardian held a roundtable discussion with experts in the field, chaired by health editor Sarah Boseley and supported by the Stop TB Partnership, to discuss the barriers to fighting the disease.

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For rightwing hypocrisy on free speech, look at Anjem Choudary | Michael Segalov

Choudary was sent to jail – no-platformed by the state – and rightly so. The law treats hate speech the same whether it’s from the far right or Islamic extremists

Nobody called Lord Holroyde a “snowflake” when in 2016 he sentenced hate preacher Anjem Choudary to five and a half years in prison for words that he’d said. Choudary was encouraging people to join Islamic State – a proscribed, banned terrorist organisation. Be in no doubt: it was language, not action, which led to a conviction.

Unsurprisingly there was no outpouring of outrage claiming Holroyde was turning the nation into a mollycoddled mass of censorious drips too afraid to tackle Choudary’s abhorrent views with sensible arguments. Many celebrated his imprisonment, and now some conservative commentators are demanding – if his views are unchanged – that he should remain locked up for longer rather than be released next month as is planned.

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Brazilian women mobilise against ‘misogynist’ far-right candidate

Jair Bolsonaro, who has called women idiots and issued taunts about rape, could be the next president. For the 2.5m women who joined a new Facebook group, something had to be done

He has mocked women as idiots and as tramps, as unworthy of rape, let alone equal pay. Within weeks he could be crowned president of a country that is home to 108 million of them.

But with Brazil’s highly polarized 7 October election looming, huge numbers of Brazilian women are now mobilizing to derail the presidential bid of the far-right frontrunner Jair Bolsonaro who is leading polls with about 26% of intended votes.

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Scientist’s report casts doubt on Jeremy Bamber trial evidence

Lawyers for man convicted of murdering his family say vital evidence is undermined

Lawyers acting on behalf of Jeremy Bamber, serving a whole life sentence for one of Britain’s most notorious multiple murders, have sent the Crown Prosecution Service a report by a senior forensics scientist which they claim undermines vital evidence heard at his trial.

The confidential report, which has been seen by the Guardian, casts doubt on the validity of evidence relating to a rifle sound moderator, or silencer, that was pivotal to Bamber’s conviction in 1986.

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‘Our lives are in danger’: mother with autistic son faces US deportation

Woman who fled poverty and violence in El Salvador more than 10 years ago says leaving would devastate her son’s care

She gets to work at 4am, puts on her boots, hard hat and respirator and goes straight through noon. Drywall finishing is demanding labor but it pays better than housekeeping ever did. More importantly, the hours are better for her three children.

After 3pm, two of her children get on with their day’s homework and a few chores, as Blanca expects, and as she needs them to do, because in the afternoon her full attention must turn to her middle child. Alfonso, 11, a US citizen by birth, is autistic and lives with severe motor, speech and emotional impediments. Together, the single mother and her son tie the knots of his shoes, regrip his fork as he eats. If a seizure strikes, she’s there to hold him. But in a week’s time, she may not be there.

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Uber bid to buy Deliveroo hits shares in rival Just Eat

Reports claim US tech giant’s UberEats is in talks to gobble up London-based rival $2bn food app

Shares in Just Eat have fallen 6% following reports that Uber is in talks to buy online food service rival Deliveroo for at least $2bn (£1.5bn).

Investors in the takeaway app took fright at the prospect of Uber using Just Eat’s arch-rival as a UK platform for boosting the UberEats food delivery service. Just Eat shares hit a 2018 low of 664p on the news.

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Irish government presses May for fresh border proposals

Ministers express frustration that PM came ‘empty-handed’ to Salzburg summit

The Irish government has urged Theresa May to put forward new proposals on the Ireland border question in writing to Brussels before the Conservative party conference in order to head off a collapse in Brexit negotiations.

The taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, and the European affairs minister, Helen McEntee, have expressed deep frustration after May came “empty-handed” to Salzburg when the EU had offered compromises on Irish border checks they felt would address British political sensitivities.

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‘Humiliation’ and ‘disaster’: how the UK press covered May’s Salzburg ordeal

Many of Friday’s front pages were unforgiving in their verdict on the PM, while others blamed EU ‘mobsters’

The events of Thursday’s Salzburg summit dominate Friday’s front pages in the UK, which use a range of terms such as “fury”, “humiliation” and “disaster” to describe EU leaders’ rejection of Theresa May’s Chequers plan.

The Guardian reports that the prime minister was left fighting to save the proposals – just over a week before the Conservative party conference – when EU leaders led by Donald Tusk and Emmanuel Macron rejected her Chequers plan as it stood. The “ambush” at the end of the summit in Austria has resulted in hard Brexit Conservatives demanding the plan be abandoned.

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RBS and NatWest customers locked out in latest banking glitch

Bank apologises for technical error blocking online and mobile account holders from logging in

Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank customers have been locked out of online and mobile accounts and left unable to access their accounts.

Users on Twitter began reporting issues in the early hours of Friday, saying they were unable to access the app or online banking services.

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Theresa May loyalists insist her Brexit plan still workable despite EU rejection

Ministers circle in support of Chequers proposals after bruising Salzburg summit

Cabinet ministers and loyalists to Theresa May are seeking to defend her beleaguered Brexit strategy, insisting her Chequers proposals are still workable even after their rejection by EU leaders at Thursday’s Salzburg summit.

It was up to the EU to “engage with what’s on the table” in the form of the Chequers deal, said the housing secretary, James Brokenshire, as the former minister Stephen Crabb urged May to “stick to her guns”.

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