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‘End the mud-slinging’
The law in England and Wales is to be changed to introduce so-called “no fault” divorces, allowing couples to split faster and – hopefully – with less conflict. Under current rules, one spouse has to claim the other is guilty of adultery, unreasonable behaviour or desertion. Alternatively, if both parties agree, they can split after two years of living apart – or five if one of them contests the move.
In future, a couple will only have to state that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. They’ll have to wait a minimum of six months to “reflect” before the process is completed, but the ability to contest a divorce will be abolished. Divorce lawyer Zahra Pabani said the changes would “help end the mud-slinging process”, hopefully to the benefit of everyone involved, especially any children.
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Theresa May will urge German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron to back her request to delay Brexit for a second time later. She wants them on board before all the EU nations are asked to approve a 30 June departure date for the UK on Wednesday. BBC Europe editor Katya Adler says EU leaders feel they’ve already lost far too much political time on Brexit and they want to know what any extension will be used for – given their scepticism about the likelihood of an end to the Westminster impasse.
Speaking of that impasse, Mrs May thinks a cross-party pact is the only way forward, but so far talks with Labour are yet to bear fruit. The government is reportedly offering to change the political declaration drawn up with the EU to pave the way for a softer Brexit. But that document isn’t legally binding and Labour fear it could be torn up by the next prime minister – whoever they are. BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg says there’s also the problem of a second referendum – a hefty chunk of the Labour Party is adamant they’ll only back a deal if one is promised, but Mrs May has always believed that’s a nightmare not worth contemplating.
Confused by all this? Here’s Brexit explained in flowchart form and some of the key sticking points explained. You can also listen to the latest Brexitcast.
The daughter of a British woman facing jail in Dubai for calling her ex-husband’s new wife a “horse” on Facebook has pleaded for her release. Laleh Shahravesh posted the insult in 2016, but was arrested last month after flying to the city for her ex-husband’s funeral. Paris Shahravesh says she hasn’t seen her mother in more than three weeks.
‘He said he was close enough to smell my hair’
By Alex Lovell, BBC Points West
It all started with greetings cards arriving at the BBC in Bristol, in 2013, filled with filthy fantasies and signed “Gordon”. They were usually innocent looking, featuring fluffy animals. They each had a distinctive large kiss and four small kisses in between. The cards kept on arriving for about four years at fairly regular intervals, but from the beginning they weren’t like the other correspondence I welcome from viewers. They were crude and very graphic… He signed them: “From your stalker and soon to be your rapist.”
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What the papers say
Many papers react to the divorce law overhaul – others, though, stick to Brexit. The price of a further delay, the Times reports, will be an assurance from Britain that it will not block or disrupt EU decisions during an extension period. The Guardian says the prime minister will also insist that talks with Labour have a serious chance of reaching a deal. The Financial Times, though, says anger is mounting among Tory Eurosceptics about the potential for compromise with Jeremy Corbyn. The Daily Telegraph says some backbenchers want Theresa May to stand down immediately claiming she is now “the problem”. Elsewhere, the Daily Express is angry about a report showing that nearly 2,500 town hall employees in England and Wales are being paid more than £100,000. And finally, the Daily Mail is one of several papers who reveal that the boss of tourist body Visit Cornwall is upset with BBC Weather presenters for repeatedly standing in front of his region during forecasts.
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