World

Queen’s death both challenge and reprieve for new UK leader


LONDON: British Prime Minister Liz Shoes Ina .
Then the death of 96 years old Queen Elizabeth II ripping up Truss’s carefully orchestrated plans.
The historic event is both a challenge and a mourning for the UK’s new, untried leader. The monarch’s demise has brought everyday politics in Britain to a halt as the country plunges into a period of emotional mourning.
“It gave her space to think with the media and plan,” says political historian Anthony Seldon. “The one thing (a) the Prime Minister lacks most is time to think.”
Truss won the Conservative Party leadership contest on 5 September and was appointed Chancellor by the queen at Balmoral Castle the next day, in one of Elizabeth’s last acts.
Truss was told the queen was seriously ill when she announced an emergency energy package in the House of Commons on September 8 designed to ease the impact of steep fuel bill increases caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The king’s death was announced a few hours later, leaving many questions about the support package unanswered as Parliament was suspended for 10 days of official mourning.
Truss’ appearances since then have been largely ceremonial. She has been to queens memorial services in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and attended the King’s coronation Charles III. On Monday, Truss will join hundreds of political leaders and dignitaries from around the world in the 2,000-strong congregation that attended the queen’s funeral at St. Westminster Abbey.
Then politics will return with vengeance and Truss will try to make up for lost time. She will be taking to the world stage, traveling to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly next week.
Even before the funeral, Truss was quietly getting to know other world leaders. She will hold private meetings this weekend with key allies, including the Prime Ministers of Canada, Australia and New Zealand, the Irish leader Michael Martin and President Andrzej Duda of Poland, which is on the front lines in support of Ukraine.
A weekend meeting scheduled with the President of the United States Joe Biden will now be held on Wednesday at the UN in New York, Truss’ office said on Saturday.
“The fact that so many leaders from all over the world are flocking to London gives the new Prime Minister plenty of time for soft diplomacy, and quiet conversations before and after the funeral will help her. hit the target – if achievable – globally. UK,” said Seldon.
Truss wanted to reassure allies that she would continue the strong political and military support for Ukraine that began under her predecessor, Boris Johnson. At the UN, she is also likely to urge the world’s democracies to work more closely together in what she has labeled the “network of freedom”.
But Truss also has some bridge work, especially with Biden. The US leader expressed concern about the impact of Britain’s departure from the European Union on the fragile peace in Northern Ireland.
Northern Ireland shares a border with Ireland, an EU member, and Brexit introduced new checks on goods that have sparked a political crisis in Belfast. United Kingdom politicians are refusing to form a power-sharing government with Irish nationalists, saying Brexit border checks undermine Northern Ireland’s position in the country. UK.
Johnson’s government has announced plans to suspend the tests and tear up part of its Brexit treaty with the EU – a move that angered the bloc and alarmed Washington. Biden has warned that neither side should do anything to undermine the 1998 Good Friday Agreement, the cornerstone of the Northern Ireland peace process, for which the United States was instrumental in negotiating.
Truss says she wants to strike a deal with the EU, but will push for Johnson’s plan to rewrite the rules if that doesn’t work out. It is unclear whether UK-EU relations, which had bottomed out during Johnson’s tumultuous tenure, have improved under Truss. Last month, she ruffled France’s feathers by saying “the jury has overlooked” on whether French President Emmanuel Macron is friend or foe.
At home, Truss – a small, free-market conservative state – was forced to leave its political comfort zone and spend billions of dollars in energy prices on households and businesses. already facing an 80% increase next month as Russia’s war in Ukraine. energy prices soar.
The government will reveal more details about its energy package – and face stiff questions from the opposition – when lawmakers return to Parliament on Wednesday.
Then, on Friday, Truss-appointed treasurer Kwasi Kwarteng will issue an urgent budget report to address the UK’s deteriorating economic picture. Inflation eased slightly in August but remained at 9.9%, the highest in four decades, while the pound was at a 37-year low against the dollar. The Bank of England has forecast a protracted recession to begin later this year.
Kwarteng is likely to announce cuts to individual or corporate taxes – or both – in the hope of boosting economic growth, although critics say such measures are more helpful for the economy. the poorest.
Newspapers reported that Kwarteng also wants to remove the limit on bankers’ bonus in place after the 2008 global financial crisis. That would be controversial and would abruptly end the truce. politics after the queen’s death.
Lawmaker Margaret Hodge of the opposition Labor Party told the BBC: “We are starting to see signs of the new economics of Liz Truss. “Thinking about bankers at this stage is taboo.”





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