The Telegraph 2024-05-16 16:00:39

Starmer is serial promise breaker, Tories warn after Labour pledge launch

The Tories labelled Sir Keir Starmer a “serial promise breaker” as they responded to the Labour leader setting out six of his main general election pledges. 

Sir Keir used a campaign rally in Essex this morning to unveil a new version of Labour’s traditional pledge card. 

The card spells out what a Labour government’s priorities would be in half a dozen policy areas, with promises including 40,000 extra NHS appointments a week and 6,500 new teachers in key subjects. 

Sir Keir said the pledges would form part of a Labour government’s efforts to put the UK “back in the service of working people”. 

But Richard Holden, the chairman of the Conservative Party, said: “Today’s speech was devoid of any plan for Britain. Sir Keir Starmer is a serial promise breaker who doesn’t have the courage or conviction to stick to a single pledge he has ever made – just look at his last pledge card, which he abandoned the second he got the chance. 

“His unfunded spending, higher taxes and amnesty for illegal migrants would take Britain back to square one.

“Rishi Sunak and the Conservatives are sticking with the plan to build a brighter future for British families, with inflation down from 11.1 per cent to 3.2 per cent, the economy growing and £900 back in hard-working people’s pockets – as well as a fair immigration system with boat crossings down.”

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Russia takes 100 square miles of Ukrainian territory in a week

Russian forces have seized over 100 square miles of Ukrainian territory within the space of a week, representing Russia’s biggest advances in more than a year.

Moscow’s military gained 99 square miles of territory in the Kharkiv area and 13 square miles in other areas between May 9 and 15, according to data from the Institute for the Study of War.

The gains follow the opening up of a new frontline after Russia pushed swiftly over the border into the Kharkiv region of northeastern Ukraine last week.

Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’s president, travelled to Kharkiv on Thursday as the situation continued to deteriorate, saying that the fight is “extremely difficult” but that his forces had it “generally under control”.

According to reports, Russian forces are preparing to seize a village just 19 miles away from Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city.

Vitaly Ganchev, a Russian-installed official in Ukraine, said that Russian troops were “already on the outskirts” of Lyptsi, which lies on one of the main road routes to the city.

It comes as Vladimir Putin met with Xi Jinping in a joint event in Beijing, where they were met with applause by attendees.

They signed an agreement on deepening the strategic partnership between Russia and China.

Mr Xi said he and Mr Putin had agreed the Ukraine war needs a “political solution”.

Mr Putin claimed Russia and China’s relationship is “stabilising” for the world.

“Our cooperation in world affairs today is one of the main stabilising factors in the international arena,” he said.

Putin added: “Together, we uphold the principles of justice and a democratic world order that reflects multipolar realities and is based on international law.”

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