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Andy Burnham says government’s plan for Afghan refugees is ‘chaotic’ and needs to be stronger

The Mayor believes that the government needs to provide more support to Greater Manchester communities

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BBC Breakfast / Twitter

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has urged the government to put ‘stronger’ plans in place to provide asylum to the refugees fleeing Afghanistan.

Burnham, who branded the current plans in place as ‘chaotic’, says Greater Manchester will happily welcome refugees but its communities need adequate support.

He told ITV News: “They’ve got to put in place arrangements here that are fair to all parts of the country and at the moment I don’t see any evidence of that.

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“It looks chaotic in terms of the way it’s being handled and the government urgently needs to get a stronger plan in place.”

So far, Manchester has welcomed over 1,000 refugees fleeing the country following the takeover of the Taliban last week. It is understood that the three hotels housing the refugees are now at full capacity.

The people of Manchester have responded valiantly to the arrival of the refugees, however, with local charity Care 4 Calais receiving floods of donations.

Burnham has applauded the efforts of Mancunians, saying: “The amount of stuff that the Greater Manchester public have donated – it’s amazing what people can do and it always restores your faith.”

However, he used it to send the government another reminder: “People are so generous here, but I would say to the Government – don’t take people’s generosity for granted and play on that.”

The first evacuation flight from the war-torn country arrived in the UK last Sunday, with the second touching down late on Tuesday night, and another landing early on Wednesday morning.

The UK government plans to welcome 20,000 more refugees across the next four years.

For more information on how you can help the refugees fleeing Afghanistan, visit the following links:

British Red Cross
UNICEF
AllWeCan.org
United Nation Refugee Agency 
Refugee Council

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Boy, 15, arrested after teenage boy stabbed to death outside school

He’s the second person to be arrested

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West Yorkshire Police

A teenage boy has been arrested following the murder of a 15-year-old on Wednesday.

The suspect, also 15, was picked up by police after student Khayri McLean was stabbed to death in Huddersfield.

He has now been arrested in connection with the murder.

He’s the second person to be arrested as police investigate Khayri’s death outside his school.

West Yorkshire Police said: “Police investigating the murder of 15-year-old Khayri McLean in Huddersfield have arrested a second youth in connection with the incident.

“The 15-year-old male was arrested yesterday and is currently in custody. A 16-year-old male who was arrested yesterday also remains in custody.

“Officers from West Yorkshire Police’s homicide and major enquiry team (HMET) are continuing to conduct enquiries into the death of Khayri, who died after being stabbed on Woodhouse Hill, Huddersfield, on Wednesday.”

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Kwasi Kwarteng scraps cap on bankers’ bonuses in first mini-budget as Chancellor

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Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng gave his first mini-budget in the House of Commons this morning.

He began by discussing the government’s plan to support people with the cost of energy, including freezing domestic bills at £2,500 and giving out the £400 rebate.

There’s also unit price limits for companies.

Kwarteng said he believes the UK needs a ‘new approach for a new era’ to achieve growth of 2.5%, saying the three important parts of his mini-budget are reforming the economy’s supply side, tax cuts and a responsible approach when it comes to public finances.

As part of this, the Chancellor announced a new bill to overhaul planning restrictions, saying this will ‘unpick the complex patchwork of planning restrictions and EU-derived laws’.

He revealed that benefit claimants will see their benefits reduced if they do not fulfil their job searching commitments.

Kwarteng also confirmed that the cap on bankers’ bonuses will be scrapped, following reports that he would make this one of his first moves.

As well as that, the planned corporation tax increase has been cancelled, and will remain at 19%, with the Chancellor also setting out a series of tax cuts for businesses.

This includes tax cuts for businesses in designated tax sites for 10 years, accelerated tax reliefs for buildings, and no business rates to pay for newly occupied business residences.

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Drag Race UK star Cherry Valentine has died aged 28

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@thecherryvalentine / Instagram

Drag star George Ward, known as Cherry Valentine, has sadly passed away aged 28, it’s been confirmed this morning.

Ward’s family announced the news, describing his death as a ‘profound shock’.

He appeared on series two of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, before going on to front the BBC documentary Gypsy Queen And Proud.

According to his family, Ward – who was raised in Darlington, County Durham as part of the Traveller community – died on Sunday.

He qualified as a mental health nurse back in 2015 before he began his career in drag.

Ward’s family said in a statement: “It is with the most heart-wrenching and deepest sadness to inform you that our George – Cherry Valentine – has tragically passed away.

“This will come as a profound shock to most people and we understand there is no easy way for this to be announced.

“As his family, we are still processing his death and our lives will never be the same.

“We understand how much he is loved and how many lives he has inspired and touched. All we ask is for your patience and your prayers in this time. We love you Georgie.”

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