Boris Johnson partygate breaking news: Security experts find spyware on phone no 10

Eddie Marsan talks about the role of John Darwin and gives a veiled blow to Boris Johnson

Two UK government departments have been repeatedly infected with Pegasus spyware, Citizen Lab has revealed.

The infections were discovered at both 10 Downing Street – the heart of government – and the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) between 2020 and 2021.

Citizen Lab said today it could confirm that the suspected FCDO-linked infections were associated with Pegasus operators linked to the United Arab Emirates, India, Cyprus and Jordan, while those in No. 10 were also associated with an operator linked to the United Arab Emirates.

It comes as a poll today revealed Boris Johnson is widely seen as a liar by UK voters.

An opinion poll by JLPartners found that only 16% of people would use positive language to describe the Prime Minister, with over 70% describing him in negative terms.

Voters were asked to describe the Prime Minister, with the most frequent description being that he is a ‘liar’ – followed by ‘incompetent’ and ‘untrustworthy’.

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Opinion: ‘Boris Johnson is the opposition parties’ greatest asset, they should rejoice’

His misfortune is that he’s not as smart as he thinks he is, and the public is more aware of his flaws than they think, writing Sean O’Grady.

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 5:05 p.m.

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Iranian-born British bishop calls Rwandan migrant scheme ‘cruel and inhumane’ in letter to Priti Patel

Iranian-born British Anglican Bishop Guli Francis-Dehqani has written a letter to Home Secretary Priti Patel condemning her “cruel and inhumane” migration plans to Rwanda.

Following scathing remarks made yesterday by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby regarding the scheme, the Bishop of Chelmsford said: ‘I fully support his comments, and my own lived experience as an asylum seeker makes me extremely anxious about it. scheme and its implications.

“This policy treats the most vulnerable among us in a cruel and inhuman way and it is for this reason that I am compelled to ask you, even at this late stage, to listen to the voices rising from a cross part of public opinion.

“Those who find their way to this country, often by treacherous means, deserve to have their cases investigated and dealt with here.”

Countering Ms Patel’s suggestion that the institutions criticizing the plans ‘do not come up with their own solutions’, she added: ‘It is to misunderstand the important role of the Church of England, particularly through the national leadership of the Archbishop of Canterbury and the parliamentary responsibilities of the Lords Spiritual.

“We are not responsible for providing elaborate policy solutions – that is the job of government and politicians. But it is our responsibility to point out where there are serious ethical and moral implications arising from government proposals.

The Bishop went on to slam Jacob Rees-Mogg’s suggestion that Mr Welby “misunderstands” politics as ‘dishonest’.

She said: “Thoughtful criticism should not be dismissed in this flippant way.”

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 4:43 p.m.

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Breakup: Police speak to Nicola Sturgeon over alleged violation of face mask law

Nicola Sturgeon has been reminded “of the importance of wearing a face covering when there is a legal obligation to do so”, Police Scotland said on Monday.

It comes after leaked footage appeared to show the Scottish First Minister breaking the country’s Covid face mask law.

“Local officers have spoken to the Prime Minister to remind him of the importance of wearing a face covering when there is a legal requirement to do so,” the force said in a statement.

No more follow up from my colleague sam hancock here:

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 4:13 p.m.

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Powerful ‘Trojan horse’ spyware found on Downing Street phone, security researchers say

Powerful spyware used by hackers to spy on communications and steal data has been discovered on a device in Downing Street, researchers have said.

Specialists from the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto say the notorious ‘Pegasus’ Trojan appears to have been used to target both the Prime Minister’s Office and the Department of Foreign Affairs.

The researchers said they had identified “several suspected cases of Pegasus spyware infections” on devices used by UK government officials.

Several No 10 mobile phones, including Boris Johnson’s, were tested after the 2020 breach – but UK authorities were apparently unable to locate the infected device or the nature of the data stolen.

Our political correspondent Peter Jon see you:

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 4:03 p.m.

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Every day Boris Johnson remains ‘tarnishes his party and his office as Prime Minister’, says former minister

Former cabinet minister Rory Stewart has said the impeachment of Prime Minister Boris Johnson is an “ethical” issue for the Conservative Party.

Tweeting today, the former Tory minister said: “Every day Boris Johnson stays tarnishes his party and the Prime Minister’s office.

“Imposing him is not just the ethical thing to do for Tory MPs.

“It’s also deeply in their long-term interest.”

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 3:42 p.m.

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Ex-archbishop calls Rwandan plan a ‘sin’

The former Archbishop of Canterbury has branded the government’s plans for Rwandan migrants a ‘sin’ after Justin Welby yesterday described the plan as ‘against the judgment of God’.

Rowan William would have said Times Radio: “Politics itself seems to me not to be in accord with what I understand of God.”

He went on to describe Partygate as something that cast doubt on Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s “position”.

He added: “A violation of the law, which has harmful consequences for society, which damages trust, which damages the integrity and credibility of not only an individual but the government seems to be perfectly appropriate for the confessional.”

“It is appropriate to bring this kind of offense to the confessional, to expose it to ask, as the formula of confession says, penance, advice and absolution.

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 3:25 p.m.

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Watch: Tory minister laughs on GMB after being asked if he would ‘send Jesus to Rwanda’

Tory minister mocks GMB after being asked if he would ‘send Jesus to Rwanda’

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 3:04 p.m.

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No. 10 and FCDO fall victim to Pegasus spyware infections

Two UK government departments have been repeatedly infected with Pegasus spyware, Citizen Lab has revealed.

The infections were discovered at both 10 Downing Street – the heart of government – and the Commonwealth and Foreign Development Office (FCDO) between 2020 and 2021.

Citizen Lab said today it could confirm that the suspected FCDO-linked infections were associated with Pegasus operators linked to the United Arab Emirates, India, Cyprus and Jordan, while those in No. 10 were associated with an operator linked to the United Arab Emirates.

Developed by Israeli cyberweapons company NSO Group, Pegasus can be secretly installed on mobile phones (and other devices) running most versions of iOS and Android.

It is able to read text messages, track calls, collect passwords, track location, access microphone and camera of target device and collect information from apps.

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 2:46 p.m.

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A ‘war cabinet’ could be created in the event of a leadership race, suggests a senior Tory

A veteran Tory MP has said a ‘war cabinet’ could be set up in the event of a possible leadership race if the Prime Minister resigns or is impeached, so as not to distract from efforts to help the War-torn Ukraine.

Sir Roger Gale has said the “caretaker administration” could be led by Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab.

“I don’t really know if what I’m proposing is possible legally,” he said.

“But if Johnson were to resign – he probably won’t – but if he were to resign, then … if the Deputy Prime Minister ran a ‘war cabinet’ to deal with the crisis and get us to the point where we could then have a real leadership election, that’s one possible route.

“What I don’t know is what the situation is if the Prime Minister refused – suppose it was necessary for the Prime Minister to leave but not to resign, then as far as I know the only way to do it is to get all 50 letters…and then hope you can win a motion of no confidence, which isn’t certain.

He added: ‘What I don’t know under the rules is that if you have a motion of no confidence and the prime minister leaves, do you then have to hold a leadership contest?

“Or could you have what I’m suggesting, which would be an interim administration – a conservative administration, but an interim administration – to carry us through?”

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 2:25 p.m.

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Watch: Boris Johnson ‘will have his say’ on Partygate scandal, says minister

Boris Johnson ‘will have a say’ over Partygate scandal, minister says

Emily AtkinsonApril 18, 2022 1:55 p.m.


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Edward L. Robinett