Thursday, 28 May 2015
Monday, 25 May 2015
A Tory backbencher has suggested that the Scottish Conservatives should, in light of Holyrood gaining more powers, seriously consider separating from the UK Tories completely and become a fully autonomous party, fighting a "separate fight for the Union" north of the border.
The view from John Stevenson, a Scot who represents Carlisle, echoes similar views from Labour politicians in respect of Scottish Labour. Andy Burnham, the frontrunner to succeed Ed Miliband as his party's leader, has made clear there "is a case" for Labour in Scotland to become a completely discrete entity; a view opposed by his colleague and rival for the leadership Liz Kendall.
But now the idea of the Scottish Conservatives breaking away from their fellow Unionists south of the border has been mooted by Mr Stevenson.
Writing on the Conservativehome website, the Aberdonian says: "I maintain that if we are to build on the success of this election, there remain three parts of the country we must target. These are - cities, the North, and Scotland.
"And since the last election, the truth is that we have made little electoral progress in these areas. The good news is that we are now in a much better position to make some real headway in these places."
In terms of urban seats, Mr Stevenson argues that the image of the Tories is changing for the better while in northern England the idea of a northern powerhouse is beginning to gain traction.
But he goes on: "As for Scotland, to a large extent the normal rules of politics have changed up there. Again, this provides us with a huge opportunity.
"There is a clear need for an appealing centre right party in Scotland. Ruth Davidson had a great referendum campaign and performed fantastically in the Scottish leadership debates not by attacking her opponents or pretending to be something she wasn't but by proudly defending and espousing Conservative Party policies."
He adds: "This has given us a good platform to kick-on from for the Scottish Parliament elections but with the inevitable transfer of further powers from Westminster, the Scottish Conservative Party has to seriously begin to think about the idea of separating completely from the national party and becoming an autonomous organisation; continuing a separate fight for the Union and Conservative values north of the border
ALGIERS – Algerian Minister of Religious Affairs Mohamed Issa said Monday that there were some 46,000 internet websites promoting a “jihadist ideology”.
“Recent studies have shown that there are over 46,000 takfiri websites that are spreading jihadist ideology, which serves the interests of Daesh,” Issa said at a Monday seminar in Algeria’s Mostaghanem province.
The minister was referring to the militant group that last year seized large swathes of Iraq and Syria.
“These websites help recruit members, especially European ones, to these takfiri and jihadist groups,” Issa said.
“With terrorism being openly promoted on websites and satellite television channels, extremist religious discourse is becoming increasingly dangerous,” he added.
Issa went on to say that the Algerian state should be more proactive in regulating religious speech.
“The concept of religiosity is inseparable from that of patriotism,” he said.
Some Algerian security experts say the country’s northwestern provinces continue to host numerous Al-Qaeda-linked militants, despite an ongoing government crackdown against such groups.
In recent months, Algeria has deployed thousands of troops along its borders with Libya, Mali, Niger and Tunisia with the stated aim of preventing infiltration by militants.
|Gunmen from Fatah’s Abu al-Rish Brigades, which describes itself as the “military wing of Fatah,” appear in a September 2014 propaganda video.|