• Robots target coronavirus with ultraviolet light at London train station
    LONDON, September 23 (Reuters): Robots that can kill the coronavirus with ultraviolet light have been brought in at one of London's biggest train stations, St Pancras International, as it tries to restore customer confidence in the safety of travel hubs. Stations suffered a blow on Tuesday when Prime Minister Boris Johnson told people to work from home again where possible and also ordered restaurants and bars to close early to tackle a second wave of COVID-19 infections.
  • UK extradition hearing for WikiLeaks' Assange postponed over COVID-19 concerns
    LONDON, September 10 (Reuters): The London extradition hearing for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was postponed on Thursday because of concern that one of the lawyers involved might have been exposed to COVID-19. Assange is fighting extradition to the United States where he is wanted for conspiring to hack government computers and violating an espionage law over the release of confidential cables by WikiLeaks in 2010-2011. Judge Vanessa Baraitser adjourned the case until M
  • Fines for not wearing masks in England shops
    LONDON, JULY 14 (IANS): The UK government has made wearing masks in shops across England mandatory and anyone flouting the measure would be imposed with a 100-pound ($125) fine starting from July 24, the media reported on Tuesday.   The development came after Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned last week that the rule was going to be put in place, but then Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove dismissed the claim over the weekend before Number 10 confirmed on Monday night the
  • Post-lockdown working life brings new challenges for disabled workers
    LONDON, July 7 (Thomson Reuters Foundation): Returning to work after lockdown is proving especially challenging for staff at Britain's Bravest Manufacturing Company (BBMC), most of whom have disabilities or are military veterans.   At the company's two factories in England, production lines have been reconfigured to allow social distancing and employees are being kitted out with protective gear suitable for those with special requirements such as gloves for ampu
  • Woman jailed for plotting to bomb St Paul's cathedral in London
    LONDON, July 3 (Reuters): A woman who had plotted a suicide bomb attack on London's St Paul's Cathedral this Easter in support of Islamic State was jailed for life on Friday and told she must serve at least 14 years behind bars.   Safiyya Shaikh, 37, had planned to set off a bomb at the popular tourist attraction, to kill herself and visitors to the famous cathedral and another bomb at the hotel where they would have stayed before the attack, prosecutors said.
  • 'Sorry is not enough', Caribbean states say of British slavery apologies
    LONDON, June 19 (Reuters): British financial institutions that benefited from slavery such as Lloyd's of London should go further than saying sorry for their role in the Atlantic slave trade and atone for their sins by funding Caribbean development, the region's countries said.   More than 10 million Africans were shackled into the Atlantic slave trade by European nations between the 15th and 19th centuries. Those who survived the often brutal voyage, ended up t
  • More work to be done to tackle discrimination, says UK PM Johnson
    LONDON, June 17 (Reuters): British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Wednesday there was more work to be done to tackle discrimination in Britain but that his government would look at new ways of legislating against vandalism of war memorials.   "It is clear from the Black Lives Matter march and all the representations that we have had that more work needs to be done," he said when asked why he was launching another review on racial inequality and disc
  • Over 600,000 UK workers lose jobs amid COVID-19 hit
    LONDON, JUNE 16 (IANS): The number of employees on British payrolls fell by more than 600,000 as lockdown restrictions hit labor market heavily amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said Tuesday.   Early indicators for May suggest that the number of employees in Britain on payrolls fell by 2.1 per cent, down 612,000 compared with March, the ONS said in a report, Xinhua news reported.   ONS's data showed from March to May, ther
  • 'Shameful' to threaten Churchill statue, says UK PM Johnson
    LONDON, June 12 (Reuters): British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Friday it was "absurd and shameful" that a statue of Winston Churchill was at risk of attack by activists, his strongest statement yet on growing protests against the legacies of past leaders.   Anti-racism protesters, who have staged demonstrations since the death of African American George Floyd, have put statues at the forefront of their challenge to Britain's imperialist past. &
  • Prince Philip, patriarch of the British royals, quietly turns 99
    LONDON, June 10 (Reuters): Prince Philip, the husband of Britain's Queen Elizabeth for more than seven decades, celebrates his 99th birthday on Wednesday, although there will be little public fanfare to mark the occasion.   Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, will spend the day privately at Windsor Castle, west of London, where he and the 94-year-old monarch have been staying during Britain's coronavirus lockdown.   That means the rest of the royal family
  • Overfishing on the rise as global consumption climbs - U.N. agency
    LONDON, June 8 (Reuters): More than a third of the fish stocks around the world are being overfished and the problem is particularly acute in developing countries, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said in a report on Monday.   The FAO said in a biennial report that tackling the issue would require several measures including stronger political will and improved monitoring as fish stocks in areas with less-developed management were in poor s
  • Generational shift? Historian sees virus encouraging new values
    LONDON, June 5 (Reuters): The coronavirus pandemic could encourage a generation to turn away from a culture of selfishness, with young people now wanting to do jobs where they can help others, Dutch historian Rutger Bregman believes.   Bregman, 32, whose latest book "Humankind" argues that people are generally decent rather than evil, became famous last year when he told a wealthy audience at the Davis World Economic Forum that they should pay more tax. &nb
  • Of course black lives matter, says British PM Johnson
    LONDON, June 3 (Reuters): British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Wednesday black lives mattered and he supported the right to protest, in a lawful and socially-distanced way, after the killing by police of George Floyd in the United States stirred widespread anger.   "Of course, black lives matter and I totally understand the anger, the grief that is felt not just in America but around the world and in our country as well," he told parliament.  
  • Distancing and masks cut COVID-19 risk, says largest review of evidence
    LONDON, June 2 (Reuters): Keeping at least one metre apart and wearing face masks and eye protection are the best ways to cut the risk of COVID-19 infection, according to the largest review to date of studies on coronavirus disease transmission.   In a review that pooled evidence from 172 studies in 16 countries, researchers found frequent handwashing and good hygiene are also critical - though even all those measures combined can not give full protection.  
  • Families are major source of abuse for gay women, trans people, report says
    LONDON, June 1 (Thomson Reuters Foundation): - Family members are often the main perpetrators of abuse against lesbians, bisexual women and transgender people, according to a major global report published on Monday.   The study of 24 countries by Britain's leading LGBT+ rights organisation Stonewall found participants in Zimbabwe in particular were more likely to suffer violence from relatives than from strangers.   More than half of the people in the southern
  • Defending lockdown easing, UK foreign minister says it's the 'right step'
    LONDON, May 31 (Reuters): British foreign minister Dominic Raab defended on Sunday the government's "careful" loosening of the coronavirus lockdown, saying it was the "right step to be taking at this moment in time".   Prime Minister Boris Johnson has come under fire from some scientists for easing a lockdown put in place 10 weeks ago, with some saying it was a premature and risky move in the absence of a fully functioning system to track new out
  • Britain deeply concerned by China's legislation for Hong Kong - PM's spokesman
    LONDON, May 28 (Reuters): Britain's government is deeply concerned about China's legislation on national security for Hong Kong, which risks undermining the principle of one nation, two systems, a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Thursday.   "We are deeply concerned about China's legislation relating to national security ... We have been very clear that the security legislation risks undermining the principle of one nation, two systems
  • England's COVID-19 test and trace system begins as adviser row rumbles on
    LONDON, May 28 (Reuters): Britain's government faced questions over how closely people would abide by its new COVID-19 test and trace service on Thursday, as a row persisted over the prime minister's closest adviser taking a long-distance journey during lockdown.   Lawmakers from the governing Conservative Party continue to add their names to those calling for Dominic Cummings to quit, after it was revealed he had travelled 400 km (250 miles) in March with his f