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Evan Bartlett, The Independent.
Here are the other things the descendant of French refugees has blamed on foreigners…
Changing the landscape of the UK
In one of his most strident attacks on immigration, Mr Farage said parts of the country have “frankly become unrecognisable” and look “like a foreign land”. (He didn’t say if this included the M4).
Multilingual train carriages
In an interview with LBC radio’s James O’Brien, which has since been described as a “car crash”, the Ukip leader referred to a recent train journey he had taken in suburban London (one of the most multicultural cities on the planet, which also welcomes over 16 million tourists a year).
“It was a stopper going out and we stopped at London Bridge, New Cross, Hither Green. It was not until we got past Grove Park that I could hear English being audibly spoken in the carriage,” he said. Presumably forgetting that his German wife probably speaks German when calling her German family back in Germany, as Mr O’Brien pointed out.
Problems with the NHS
When defending his comments about barring foreign nationals with HIV from NHS treatment, Mr Farage also added that the NHS was under strain from TB-suffering immigrants:
“Tuberculosis is costing the National Health Service a great deal of money, and much of that is coming from southern and eastern Europe.”
Last September, the Ukip leader announced there was a “dark side” to immigration and that London was suffering from a “Romanian crime wave“.
He also suggested in an interview with the aforementioned James O’Brien that he would feel concerned if a group of Romanian migrants moved in next door. When questioned what the difference was between Romanian and German migrants, he said “You know what the difference is”.
He then blamed that outburst, which was criticised as a “racial slur“, on being tired.
In a speech to Faversham grammar school in Kent in 2012, Mr Farage said: “We have 22 per cent of young people unemployed yet with open borders we are doing our own people out of jobs.”
A squeeze on housing
The Ukip leader claimed on BBC Question Time in 2012 that rising house prices in London were due to “Greek money” fleeing the Eurozone.
He also claimed a lack of social housing in London was because of immigrants coming from Eastern Europe and “[getting] a national insurance number easily within a fortnight”.
Liberal Democrat MP Simon Hughes and then a member of the audience who worked for a local council in London helpfully pointed out that it is actually far more difficult, nigh on impossible in fact, for a foreign national to arrive in Britain and get a council house within two weeks. They must be employed, and they do not get any priority over British citizens.
In this helpful explainer, Channel 4 also points out that a foreign national is highly unlikely to get a “right to reside” if they are unemployed – even if they have a national insurance number, something which would also take months to come through without a job.
In yet another stint on LBC, Mr Farage condemned rising levels of anti-Semitism in Britain, saying: “What’s fueling it is there are many more Muslim voices and some of them are deeply critical of Israel and some of them question Israel’s right to exist.”
An increase in GDP
In an interview with the International Business Times last month, Mr Farage said society had become too obsessed with a rise in GDP, and said: “It’s actually not very hard to do that if you have uncontrolled immigration.” Unbelievable, these people, coming over here, making our economy better.
Rising support for Ukip
The Ukip leader called the people of Ireland Britain’s “kith and kin” and claimed that the party’s rhetoric was increasingly chiming with the country’s Irish communities.
“There is substantial and growing support for Ukip among people of Irish extraction and those who have themselves come from the Republic of Ireland to build a life in Britain,” he said.
But then again, he does admit it’s improved our food…
After touring the country before local elections last year, Farage said he met lots of people who had never had a problem with migration before. “It jollifies the place and the food’s better and all that,” he told Andrew Marr.
British Prime Minister David Cameron leaves after giving a statement to the media about Scotland’s referendum results, outside his official residence at 10 Downing Street in central London, Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. Scottish voters have rejected independence, deciding to remain part of the United Kingdom after a historic referendum that shook the country to its core. The decision prevented a rupture of a 307-year union with England, bringing a huge sigh of relief to the British political establishment. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister David Cameron sought Monday to limit the divisive political fallout following the Scottish referendum, gathering senior Conservatives at his official country retreat to placate anger over promises made to Scotland to keep it in the United Kingdom.
Britain’s politicians now have the headache of mapping out how to implement the new powers pledged to Scotland and how that impacts the rest of the realm — England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Here is a guide to the issues being discussed.
WHAT IS THE ‘ENGLISH QUESTION?’
Cameron’s main problem is anger over the “English question,” or the “English votes for English laws” issue.
That refers to the question of whether Scottish lawmakers elected to the House of Commons can continue to vote on policies that only affect England — a longstanding grievance in the U.K.’s system.
The Cameron-led Conservative Party is upset that its leader, together with the two main opposition parties, promised to allow the Scottish Parliament to decide on their own tax, spending and welfare issues in a last-minute attempt to encourage voters to reject independence.
The Tories argue that if Scots get that package, then other parts of the U.K. should also be granted similar powers.
Conservative John Redwood said that some party members feel that “we too need our own devolved government to balance the kingdom.”
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR SCOTLAND?
Cameron has drawn an acrimonious backlash for suggesting that handing power to the Scots should take place “in tandem” with a decision on constitutional reforms in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Liberal Democrat Cabinet minister Danny Alexander called Cameron’s position “deeply frustrating.”
Cameron’s office has since stressed that it will honor the promise made last week.
But there is no consensus among the parties on the way forward. That doesn’t bode well for Scotland, which was promised legislation setting out the transfer of powers by mid-2015.
Many say that is an impossible timeline because there is simply no quick fix to constitutional changes that affect the whole of the U.K.
Alex Salmond, the Scottish independence leader, has said Scottish voters are angry and hurt by the political fallout, and claimed they have been “tricked” into voting to stay in the union.
Cameron is now in a bind to calm the rebellion within his own ranks and has to convince the public he hasn’t backtracked on a promise.
But the opposition Labour Party, which is seeking a return to power in next year’s general election, stands to lose the most in the fallout. The party, which has 41 of Scotland’s 59 lawmakers, will suffer from any measures to restrict Scottish voting rights.
Opposition leader Ed Miliband refused to back or reject Cameron’s stance, only saying he would be open to the idea of greater scrutiny by English lawmakers.
French President Francois Hollande, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and US President Barack Obama during the 2014 NATO Summit, in Newport, Wales, on Sept. 4, 2014. © AFP
(Reuters) NEWPORT, Wales, Sept 4 (Reuters) – It is up to individual NATO members to decide whether to supply arms to Ukraine, which is battling an armed revolt by pro-Russian separatists, NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on Thursday.
“NATO as an alliance is not involved in delivery of equipment because we do not possess military capabilities,” Rasmussen told a news conference at a NATO summit.
“These are possessed by individual allies, so such decisions are national decisions and we are not going to interfere with that,” Rasmussen said when asked if NATO would supply arms to Ukraine.
(Reporting by Adrian Croft, writing by Guy Faulconbridge, editing by Paul Taylor).
LONDON (AP) — The British pound slipped sharply after an opinion poll showed that those advocating Scottish independence from the United Kingdom have gained ground, a little more than two weeks before the vote.
A YouGov poll released Tuesday showed support for Scottish independence running at 47 percent. As a result, the ‘no’ camp — those supporting the continuation of the 307-year union with England, Wales and Northern Ireland — only has a 6 percent lead in the poll.
That represents a significant narrowing in the ‘no’ lead. Less than a month ago, the equivalent poll lead was over 20 points.
The narrowing echoes other findings that the ‘yes’ campaign has gained ground over the past week or so after its leader, Scotland First Minister Alex Salmond was widely judged to have bested Alistair Darling, the head of the “Better Together” campaign, in a televised debate.
“A close finish looks likely, and a ‘yes’ victory is now a real possibility,” said Peter Kellner, YouGov’s president. “Even if ‘no’ finally wins the day, it now looks less likely that it will win by a big enough margin to deliver a knockout blow to supporters of independence.”
The poll, which was based on interviews with 1,063 people, spooked some traders, and the pound traded 0.6 percent lower at $1.6525. The Scottish independence vote takes place Sept. 18.
“With less than three weeks to go until polling day the tide is starting to shift,” said Kathleen Brooks, research director at Forex.com.
The economic impact of a vote in favor of independence remains difficult to quantify as many aspects remain unclear, such as whether a go-it-alone Scotland would be able to use the pound as its currency, as the “yes” campaign advocates. There are also questions as to how the U.K.’s debt mountain would be divvied up.
“We think that the prospect of independence could boost volatility in the pound in the coming weeks,” Brooks added.
Scotland already has a parliament responsible for a wide array of social matters as well as its own legal code. However, economic and defense matters remain the responsibility of Westminster in London, where Scottish lawmakers make up a minority. The main U.K. political parties have indicated that they are prepared to give the Scottish Parliament more powers after the vote.