Ghosn: Bail conditions revealed by lawyer

The lawyer for former Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn has revealed the terms his client had to meet to secure his initial release from custody on bail.

Conditions the 65-year-old had faced included using a sole computer, in his lawyer’s office, and one mobile phone.

A 24-hour surveillance camera also had to be installed at the entrance of his court-approved permanent residence.

Mr Ghosn was re-arrested in Tokyo last week, pending trial over claims of financial misconduct.

He has been detained over suspicions that he tried to enrich himself at the carmaker’s expense.

In a statement, Mr Ghosn – who denies any wrongdoing – said his re-arrest was “outrageous and arbitrary”.

Internet records

Mr Ghosn’s lawyer, Takashi Takano, issued a blog post (in Japanese) over the weekend where he outlined his client’s bail conditions after he was released from custody on 6 March.

Mr Ghosn had been released on $9m (£6.8m) bail after 108 days in custody.

The conditions stated Mr Ghosn must not flee or hide, not travel abroad. Any travel within Japan of more than three days would have needed court sanctioning.

Any change of address also had to be approved by a court.

Mr Ghosn also had to keep a log of everyone he met – except his wife and legal counsel – as well as records of telephone calls and internet use.

He was also ordered not to make contact with a number of fellow defendants, including board member Greg Kelly, suspected of collaborating with Mr Ghosn.

‘Groundless’

Tokyo prosecutors entered Mr Ghosn’s residence before 06:00 local time on Thursday (21:00 GMT Wednesday) and took him to their office on suspicion he had misappropriated Nissan funds for personal use, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported.

Mr Ghosn’s lawyer said it was almost unheard of to arrest someone after being released on bail.

“I am innocent of the groundless charges and accusations against me,” Mr Ghosn said in a statement released by his representatives.

He said the arrest was “part of another attempt by some individuals at Nissan to silence me by misleading the prosecutors”.

Nissan is holding an extraordinary shareholders meeting on Monday, where the carmaker is expected to dismiss Mr Ghosn and his onetime-deputy Mr Kelly from the board of directors.

Oman links?

The move is the latest twist in a case that has attracted global attention.

Mr Ghosn was the architect of the alliance between Nissan and French carmaker Renault, and brought Mitsubishi on board in 2016. He is credited with turning around the fortunes of Nissan and Renault over several years.

Prosecutors said Mr Ghosn’s latest arrest related to transfers of Nissan funds totalling $15m between 2015 and 2018.

They suspect $5m of that amount was used by Mr Ghosn for personal expenditure.

Local media had previously said that authorities had been building a new case against him involving payments to a dealership in Oman.

In Japan, prosecutors are permitted to re-arrest a suspect on a slightly different accusation, with approval from the courts. The clock is then reset and another 20 days of interrogation can begin.

Misconduct allegations

Mr Ghosn was first arrested in November for understating his pay. He was re-arrested twice in December and faces three charges.

He was first charged with underreporting his pay package for the five years to 2015.

In January, a fresh charge

claimed he understated his compensation for another three years and he was also indicted on a new, more serious charge of breach of trust.

The motor executive had said on 3 April, in a newly created Twitter account, that he was planning a press conference on 11 April “to tell the truth about what’s happening”.

Fiat to pool with Tesla to avoid EU fines’

Fiat Chrysler (FCA) and Tesla have drawn up a plan to avoid the former having to pay fines for violating EU emissions rules, the FT has reported.

The paper says that under the deal the cars of electric automaker Tesla will be counted as part of the FCA fleet.

It will let the Italian carmaker offset carbon dioxide emissions from its cars against Tesla’s, by bringing down its average figure to a permissible level.

FCA said it would “optimise the options for compliance the regulations offer”.

The carmaker continued: “FCA is committed to reducing the emissions of all our products… the purchase pool provides flexibility to deliver products our customers are willing to buy while managing compliance with the lowest cost approach.”

There is no indication of the specific amount that FCA has agreed to pay Tesla.

Last year FCA, which has been lagging behind rivals in the manufacture of electric vehicles, said it planned to spend €9bn (£7.75bn; $10.1bn) over four years to develop electric cars which complied with global emissions standards.

Under EU rules, carmakers can join with rival companies to form so-called open pools but none have done so until now.

FCA applied to form an emissions pool with Tesla, and also Alfa Romeo, in February.

Toyota and Mazda have also applied to the EU to form an emissions pool, as have Citroen, Peugeot, and Opel.

Bret Hart: Wrestling legend attacked in ring during speech

Professional wrestler Bret Hart was attacked by a man while delivering a speech at a World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) event in New York.

Video footage showed the attacker charging into the ring, grabbing Mr Hart and pulling him to the floor.

The suspect, identified by police as Zachary Mason, 26, faces charges of assault and trespassing.

Mr Hart, 61, better known by his wrestling name “Hitman”, has had a career spanning five decades.

Fellow wrestling stars Shane McMahon, Xavier Woods, Tyson Kidd, and Curtis Axel were among those who rushed to Mr Hart’s aid.

The suspect was held by security guards until police arrived to arrest him.

Following the incident on Saturday, Mr Hart did not need medical attention and continued with his speech.

Brexit: How do European elections work?

Theresa May has requested a Brexit extension to the end of June and preparations have started to take part in the European elections on 23 May.

Although the prime minister hopes to get a deal through the UK Parliament before that date, she accepts – reluctantly – that if the UK remains in the European Union (EU) after the deadline, it must hold elections to the European Parliament.

What is the European Parliament?

The European Parliament is directly elected by EU voters.

It is responsible, along with the Council of Ministers from member states, for making laws and approving budgets.

It also plays a role in the EU’s relations with other countries, including those wishing to join the bloc.

Its members represent the interests of different countries and different regions within the EU.

How are its members elected?

Every five years, EU countries go to the polls to elect members of the European Parliament (MEPs).

Each country is allocated a set number of seats, roughly depending on the size of its population. The smallest, Malta (population: around half a million) has six members sitting in the European Parliament while the largest, Germany (population: 82 million) has 96.

At the moment there are 751 MEPs in total and the UK has 73.

Candidates can stand as individuals or they can stand as representatives of one of the UK’s political parties.

Once elected, they represent different regions of the country, again according to population. The north-east of England and Northern Ireland have three MEPs each while the south-east of England, including London, has 18.

While most UK MEPs are also members of a national party, once in the European Parliament they sit in one of eight political groups which include MEPs from across the EU who share the same political affiliation.

Bar chart of number of seats won in European Parliament elections in 2014 - UKIP came out top followed by Labour then Conservatives

Member states can run elections to the European Parliament according to their own national laws and traditions, but they must stick to some common rules. MEPs must be elected using a system of proportional representation – so, for example, a party which gains a third of the votes wins a third of the seats.

Turnout in the UK for European Parliament elections is low both by EU standards and by the standards of other UK elections.

The last time they were held in 2014, 36% of those eligible to vote did so, compared with 43% in the EU as a whole.

That compares with 66% turnout at the following year’s general election.

In 2016, 56% of the electorate voted in the Scottish Parliament elections, 45% in the Welsh Assembly and 54% in the Northern Ireland Assembly.

In local elections in England, turnout varies depending largely on what other elections are taking place on the same day, sometimes dipping as low as the European elections turnout and sometimes rising close to the level of general elections.

Elections to European Parliament

Source: European Parliament

How much do elections cost?

The last time European elections were held in 2014, the UK spent £109m on them.

The main costs were running the poll itself (securing polling stations and venues to run counts) and mailing out candidate information and polling cards.

The government has said that if the UK does not end up participating in the 2019 elections, it will reimburse local returning officers – the people responsible for running elections – for any expenses already paid.

What happens if the UK leaves?

The EU is planning to reduce the overall number of seats in the parliament from 751 to 705 when the UK leaves.

There will be a reallocation of 27 of the UK’s seats to 14 other member states that are currently underrepresented. And the rest will be set aside with the possibility of being allocated to any new member states that join in the future.

The EU has already passed legislation to do this, but it does not take effect until the UK leaves.

The number of seats is capped in law at 751.

The European Commission had advised that as long as the UK made a decision to take part in the European elections by mid-April, this reallocation would be reversed.

But what if the UK elects MEPs and then passes a deal to leave the EU?

In that case, the UK MEPs would not take their seats, leaving vacancies.

The House of Commons Library says that extra MEPs could potentially be elected on “stand-by” in some member states but not take up their seats until the UK leaves the EU.

#Brexit: I had no choice but to approach Labour – May

Prime Minister Theresa May has insisted she had to reach out to Labour in a bid to deliver Brexit or risk letting it “slip through our fingers”.

The PM said there was a “stark choice” of either leaving the European Union with a deal or not leaving at all.

And shadow business secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey says if no-deal became an option Labour would consider “very, very strongly” voting to cancel Brexit.

Some Tories have criticised the PM for seeking Labour’s help on her deal.

Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom said the Tories were working with Labour “through gritted teeth”, adding that no deal would be better than cancelling Brexit.

MPs have rejected Mrs May’s Brexit plan three times and last week’s talks between the two parties were aimed at trying to find a proposal which could break the deadlock in the Commons before an emergency EU summit on Wednesday.

However, the three days of meetings stalled without agreement on Friday.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has said he was “waiting to see the red lines move” and had not “noticed any great change in the government’s position”.

He is coming under pressure from his MPs to demand a referendum on any deal he reaches with the government, with 80 signing a letter saying a public vote should be the “bottom line” in the negotiations.

‘Willing to continue talks’

In a statement issued on Saturday night, Mrs May said after doing “everything in my power” to persuade her party – and its backers in Northern Ireland’s DUP – to approve the deal she agreed with the EU last year, she “had to take a new approach”.

“We have no choice but to reach out across the House of Commons,” the PM said, insisting the two main parties agreed on the need to protect jobs and end free movement.

“The referendum was not fought along party lines and people I speak to on the doorstep tell me they expect their politicians to work together when the national interest demands it.”

Composite image featuring Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn
Mrs May has been criticised by some Conservatives for reaching out to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn

Getting a majority of MPs to back a Brexit deal was the only way for the UK to leave the EU, Mrs May said.

“The longer this takes, the greater the risk of the UK never leaving at all.”

Ms Long-Bailey, who was involved in Labour’s meetings with the government, told BBC’s Andrew Marr Show they were “very good-natured” and there had been “subsequent exchanges”.

She said Labour was yet to see the compromise proposals needed to agree a deal but she was “hopeful that will change in the coming days and we are willing to continue the talks”.

However, she added Labour would “keep all options in play to keep no deal off the table”, including supporting a vote to revoke Article 50 – the legal mechanism through which Brexit is taking place.

Tory Brexiteers have reacted angrily to the prospect of Mrs May accepting Labour’s demands, particularly for a customs union with the EU which would allow tariff-free trade in goods with the bloc but limit the UK from striking its own deals.

Ms Long-Bailey indicated Labour might be willing to be flexible over its support for a customs union but said the government proposals on the issue have “not been compliant with the definition of a customs union”.

Andrea Leadsom: “It is appalling to consider another referendum”

Interviewed on the Andrew Marr Show, Ms Leadsom reiterated her comments in the Sunday Telegraph that holding another referendum on the UK’s departure would be the “ultimate betrayal”.

She said that taking part in the European elections in the event of a Brexit delay would also be “utterly unacceptable”.

Ms Leadsom said: “Specifically provided we are leaving the European Union then it is important that we compromise, that’s what this is about and it is through gritted teeth. But nevertheless the most important thing is to actually leave the EU,” she said.

The Commons leader also told the BBC’s Brexitcast there is the potential for bringing Mrs May’s deal back before MPs this week.

‘Open revolt’

The UK is due to leave the EU on 12 April and, as yet, no withdrawal deal has been approved by the House of Commons.

This week Mrs May is to ask Brussels for an extension to 30 June, with the possibility of an earlier departure if a deal is agreed.

Labour says it has had no indication the government will agree to its demand for changes to the political declaration – the section of Mrs May’s Brexit deal which outlines the basis for future UK-EU relations.

The document declares mutual ambitions in areas such as trade, regulations, security and fishing rights – but does not legally commit either party.

Dominic Raab outside 10 Downing Street in November 2018
Former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab says the talks could help Mr Corbyn into No 10

Leaving the EU’s customs union was a Conservative manifesto commitment, and former party whip Michael Fabricant predicted “open revolt” among Tories and Leave voters if MPs agreed to it.

However, Downing Street has described the prospect as “speculation”.

Meanwhile, the Sunday Telegraph reported some activists were refusing to campaign for the party, while donations had “dried up”.

And former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab writes in the Mail on Sunday that Mrs May’s approach “threatens to damage the Conservatives for years”.

“There is now a danger that Brexit could be lost and that the government could fall – handing the keys to Downing Street to Corbyn,” he says.

Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg said including Mr Corbyn in the Brexit process was a “mistake” as “he is not sympathetic to the government, obviously, and is a Remainer”.

He told Sky News the reason Mrs May has not been able to secure the backing of all Conservative MPs was “her own creation” and because she failed to “deliver” a deal they could support.

In a letter to Mr Corbyn, some Labour MPs have pointed out that – because the political declaration is not legally binding, and with Mrs May having promised to stand down – a future Tory PM could simply “rip up” any of her commitments.

Four shadow ministers were among 80 signatories of the Love Socialism Hate Brexit campaign letter pressing for a further public vote.

Any compromise deal agreed by Parliament will have “no legitimacy if it is not confirmed by the public”, it argues.

However, Labour is split on the subject, with a letter signed by 25 Labour MPs on Thursday arguing the opposite.

They warned it would “divide the country further and add uncertainty for business” and could be “exploited by the far-right, damage the trust of many core Labour voters and reduce our chances of winning a general election”.

Key dates in the week ahead

  • Monday: Possible resumption of talks between the government and Labour
  • Wednesday: Emergency summit of EU leaders to consider UK request for further extension until 30 June, with the option of an earlier Brexit day if a deal can be agreed
  • Friday: Brexit day, if UK is not granted a further delay
Flowchart on next steps

Update: #Libya crisis: Foreign powers evacuate as unrest worsens

International powers have begun evacuating personnel from Libya amid a worsening security situation.

US Africa Command said it had relocated an unspecified contingent of US forces, while India said it had evacuated peacekeepers to Tunisia.

Rebel forces under Gen Khalifa Haftar have advanced from the east with the aim of taking the capital, Tripoli.

The UN-backed prime minister has accused him of attempting a coup and says rebels will be met with force.

Libya has been torn by violence and political instability since long-time ruler Muammar Gaddafi was deposed and killed in 2011.

Who is evacuating and why?

Gen Haftar began his offensive four days ago and fighting on the outskirts of the capital has led some international groups to react to the deteriorating security situation.

US Africa Command, responsible for US military operations and liaison in Africa, said that due to the “increased unrest” it had relocated a contingent of US forces temporarily, but gave no further details on numbers.

There were reports of a fast amphibious craft being used in the operation.

India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said its full contingent of 15 Central Reserve Police Force peacekeepers had been evacuated from Tripoli because the “situation in Libya has suddenly worsened”.

A market in Tripoli.
A market in Tripoli. Residents are said to be stocking up on supplies

The Italian multinational oil and gas company, Eni, decided to evacuate all its Italian personnel from the country.

The UN is also due to pull out non-essential staff.

Residents of Tripoli have reportedly begun stocking up on food and fuel. But BBC Arab affairs editor Sebastian Usher says many of those near the fighting are remaining in their homes for now, for fear of looting should they leave.

Some fear a long operation, which Gen Haftar mounted to take the eastern city of Benghazi from Islamist fighters.

What’s happening with the fighting?

Fighting continued on Sunday around the disused international airport south of the capital that Gen Haftar earlier said his forces had seized.

Gen Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) forces have been carrying out a multi-pronged attack from the south and west of the city.

However, forces loyal to the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) have now slowed the advance.

“Intensive air strikes” were carried out by GNA aircraft 50km (30 miles) south of Tripoli on Saturday.

One militia from Misrata told AFP it had aligned with the GNA and had sent armed vehicles to Tajura, in the eastern suburbs, to counter the LNA.

Who are the opposing forces?

Libya has been wracked by unrest since the overthrow of Col Gaddafi. Dozens of militias operate in the country.

Gen Haftar
Gen Haftar has ordered his forces to advance on Tripoli

Recently they have been allying either with the UN-backed GNA, based in Tripoli, or the LNA of Gen Haftar, a tough anti-Islamist who has the support of Egypt and the UAE and is strong in eastern Libya.

Gen Haftar helped Col Gaddafi seize power in 1969 before falling out with him and going into exile in the US. He returned in 2011 after the uprising against Gaddafi began and became a rebel commander.

The unity government was created at talks in 2015 but has struggled to assert national control.

Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj delivered a TV address on Saturday, saying he would defend the capital.

Mr Serraj said he had offered concessions to Gen Haftar to avoid bloodshed, only to be “stabbed in the back”.

Back to square one?

Analysis by Best, BBC North Africa correspondent, in Tunis

The rogue general’s defiance suggests that, despite international condemnation of his recent moves, he believes he can only secure a place in Libya’s future political makeup through militarily means.

Diplomats are worried, because the manner and timing of the attack means he is unlikely to back down unless he is defeated.

Few thought he would go ahead and launch this operation – which he has long threatened to do – because they believed ongoing talks that saw him go from Paris to Palermo and the UAE for more than a year would buy time until a new political settlement was reached through negotiations and an eventual electoral process.

Today, Western nations have few cards to play to de-escalate the violence and once again find themselves in a position where they may need to start from scratch.

Presentational grey line

Are peace talks planned?

UN-backed talks aimed at drawing up a road map for new elections have been scheduled for 14-16 April in the Libyan city of Ghadames.

UN envoy Ghassan Salame insisted the talks would go ahead, unless serious obstacles prevented it, saying “we won’t give up this political work quickly”.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres was in Tripoli just last Thursday to discuss the situation.

But Gen Haftar has said his troops will not stop until they have defeated “terrorism”.

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Truro City footballer lay on pitch injured for hours

An injured footballer was left lying on the pitch for more than two and a half hours before an ambulance arrived to take him to hospital.

The National League South match between Truro City and Concord Rangers was abandoned after the shoulder injury at about 16:30 BST on Saturday.

Truro player Michael Herve could not be moved until an ambulance arrived at 19:10.

The South Western Ambulance Service said it responded within target times.

The midfielder was finally lifted into the ambulance at 20:00 and taken to the Royal Cornwall Hospital, less than two miles from the Treyew Road ground.

Ambulance
An ambulance did not arrive for more than two and half hours after the injury

The Truro City physiotherapist Ian Leigh remained with the player on the pitch and used jumpers and jackets to keep him warm.

Staff managed to get him on to a stretcher, but could not lift him off the pitch because of the pain he was suffering.

The referee took the decision to abandon the match because there was no security available at the ground after 18:00, and play could not continue with a player lying on the pitch.

Ian Leigh
The Truro City physio Ian Leigh attended to the player while they waited for an ambulance

Concord Rangers, from Canvey Island in Essex, had a 620-mile round trip for the game and were leading 1-0 at the time of the injury after 75 minutes of the game.

The league will now decide on what happens, with a replay the most likely outcome.

The ambulance service said its clinical hub initially assessed the call as a category three, which gives a two-hour target response time.

This was upgraded, after a follow-up call, to a category two.

The service said it arrived within the 40-minute target for a call of this type.

Sudan: Protesters converge on army headquarters in Khartoum

Thousands of demonstrators across Sudan have taken part in what appears to be the biggest series of rallies against President Omar al-Bashir since protests began in December.

In Khartoum, demonstrators reached the army headquarters for the first time. The presidential compound is nearby.

Security forces used tear gas and made several arrests.

The rallies mark the 34th anniversary of the coup that overthrew the regime of former President Jaafar Nimeiri.

So far, the army has not intervened in the protests.

Demonstrators remained outside the compound in the evening after authorities pulled back, as organisers reportedly called on protesters to hold a sit-in to keep up the pressure.

Some reportedly vowed to stay until President Bashir resigned.

Sudan’s information minister meanwhile reaffirmed the government’s plan to resolve the crisis through talks and praised the security forces.

Police told the state news service Suna that one civilian – who protest organisers reportedly said was a medic – had died in Khartoum’s sister city Omdurman.

Civilians and officers were also reportedly wounded.

Why are people protesting?

Journalist Mohamed Ali Fazari, who was at the scene in Khartoum, said protesters were urging the army to side with the people against the government.

The crowd chanted “freedom, freedom, justice – one people one army”, he told BBC Focus on Africa radio.

The protests were originally sparked by a hike in the cost of living but are now calling for the president, who has been in power for nearly 30 years, to step down.

Sudan’s economy has long been strained since the US imposed sanctions more than 20 years ago, accusing Khartoum of sponsoring terror groups.

A young man covers his face to protect himself from tear gas during protests in Khartoum in February
Authorities have used tear gas to try to disperse the protesters

In December last year, the Sudanese government announced the price of fuel and bread would rise.

In the year leading up to this, inflation had risen while the Sudanese pound fell rapidly in value.

The announcement of the price rises triggered protests, which evolved into calls for President Bashir to step down.

His rule has been blighted with accusations of human rights abuses. In 2009 and 2010, the International Criminal Court (ICC) charged him with counts of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. A warrant for his arrest has been issued.

Who are the demonstrators?

The Sudanese Professionals Association (SPA) – a collaboration of health workers and lawyers – has been organising the protests.

Doctors have emerged as a leading force and as a result are being targeted by the authorities.

It is estimated that up two thirds of the protesters are women, who say they are demonstrating against Sudan’s sexist and patriarchal society.

Sudan protests: ‘No amount of beating will make us stop’

How has the president responded?

In February, it looked like he might give in to protests and step down, but instead Mr Bashir declared a state of national emergency.

President Omar al-Bashir sitting on a green chair dressed in white at the National Dialogue Committee at his palace in Khartoum on April 5
President Bashir spoke to the National Dialogue Committee at his palace on 5 April

On the streets, security has been heavy, with tear gas used indiscriminately and reports of violence commonplace.

Sudan protests: People flee gunshots in deadly protest

Sudanese authorities have been accused of arresting prominent activists and targeting medics

which the National Intelligence Security Service has denied.

Authorities say 31 people have died in protest-related violence so far, but Human Rights Watch says the figure is more like 51.

The pressure group Physicians for Human Rights says it has evidence of killing, persecution and torture of peaceful protesters and the medics caring for them.

Libya crisis: Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj vows to defend Tripoli

Libya’s UN-backed prime minister has vowed to defend the capital Tripoli as forces loyal to a rival advance from the east.

In a televised address Fayez al-Serraj accused General Khalifa Haftar of launching a coup, saying his troops would be met with “strength and power”.

The rebels are on the outskirts of the capital and say they have seized Tripoli’s international airport.

Tripoli is the base of the UN-backed, internationally recognised government.

Rebel forces are advancing on Tripoli in a multi-pronged attack from the south and west of the city, although they have reportedly been slowed by pro-government fighters.

Gen Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) troops seized the south of Libya and its oil fields earlier this year.

Libya has been torn by violence and political instability since long-time ruler Muammar Gaddafi was deposed and killed in 2011.

What’s happening in Libya?

Gen Haftar – who was appointed chief of the LNA under an earlier UN-backed administration – ordered his forces to advance on Tripoli on Thursday, as UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres was in the city to discuss the ongoing crisis.

Gen Haftar spoke to Mr Guterres in Benghazi on Friday, and reportedly told him that his operation would not stop until his troops had defeated “terrorism”.

Prime Minister al-Serraj said his government had “extended our hands towards peace” while Gen Haftar had declared a coup.

Forces have been ordered “to deal with the threat of those striving to destabilise and intimidate civilians”, he said, adding those responsible will be brought to justice.

Gen Haftar
Image captionGen Haftar has ordered his forces to march on Tripoli

Despite international demands to stop the advance, the LNA now says they have seized the disused international airport south of Tripoli and reportedly declared a no-fly zone over the west of the country, although the situation on the ground remains unclear.

The Libyan air force, which is nominally under government control, said it had targeted an area 50km (30 miles) south of the capital on Saturday morning with “intensive strikes”. The LNA vowed to retaliate.

Tripoli residents, concerned that major fighting could erupt, have begun stocking up on food and fuel, reports say.

What’s been the reaction?

The G7 group of major industrial nations has urged all parties “to immediately halt all military activity”. The UN Security council has issued a similar call.

Russia has also called on parties in the escalating conflict to find an agreement.

Speaking in Egypt, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warned against what he called foreign meddling in Libya, while Egypt’s foreign minister Sameh Shoukry said Libya’s problems could not be solved by military means.

Both countries have provided support to Gen Haftar.

UN envoy Ghassan Salame said on Saturday that a conference planned for 14-16 April intended to pave the way for elections would still be held.

Who is Khalifa Haftar?

Born in 1943, the former army officer helped Colonel Muammar Gaddafi seize power in 1969 before falling out with him and going into exile in the US. He returned in 2011 after the uprising against Gaddafi began and became a rebel commander.

In December Haftar met Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj from the UN-backed government at a conference but refused to attend official talks.

He visited Saudi Arabia last week, where he met King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for talks.

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Brexit: I had no choice but to approach Labour – May

Prime Minister Theresa May has insisted she had to reach out to Labour in a bid to deliver Brexit or risk letting it “slip through our fingers”.

In a statement on Saturday night, Mrs May said there was a “stark choice” of either leaving the European Union with a deal or not leaving at all.

Some Conservatives have criticised her for seeking Labour’s help after MPs rejected her Brexit plan three times.

Three days of talks between the parties stalled without agreement on Friday.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said he was “waiting to see the red lines move” and had not “noticed any great change in the government’s position”.

He is coming under pressure from his MPs to demand a referendum on any deal he reaches with the government, with 80 signing a letter saying a public vote should be the “bottom line” in the negotiations.

In her statement, Mrs May said that after doing “everything in my power” to persuade her party – and its backers in Northern Ireland’s DUP – to approve the deal she agreed with the EU last year, she “had to take a new approach”.

“We have no choice but to reach out across the House of Commons,” the PM said, insisting the two main parties agreed on the need to protect jobs and end free movement.

“The referendum was not fought along party lines and people I speak to on the doorstep tell me they expect their politicians to work together when the national interest demands it.”

Getting a majority of MPs to back a Brexit deal was the only way for the UK to leave the EU, Mrs May said.

“The longer this takes, the greater the risk of the UK never leaving at all.”

Dominic Raab outside 10 Downing Street in November 2018
Former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab says the talks could help Mr Corbyn into No 10

The UK is due to leave the EU on 12 April and, as yet, no withdrawal deal has been approved by the House of Commons.

Labour says it has had no indication the government will agree to its demand for changes to the political declaration – the section of Mrs May’s Brexit deal which outlines the basis for future UK-EU relations.

The document declares mutual ambitions in areas such as trade, regulations, security and fishing rights – but does not legally commit either party.

Downing Street has indicated it is “prepared to pursue changes” in order to secure a deal, and Chancellor Philip Hammond said on Saturday he was “optimistic” the talks could reach “some form of agreement”.

‘Open revolt’

However, Tory Brexiteers have reacted angrily to the prospect of Mrs May accepting Labour’s demands, particularly for a customs union with the EU which would allow tariff-free trade with the bloc but prevent the UK from striking its own trade deals.

Leaving the EU’s customs union was a Conservative manifesto commitment, and former party whip Michael Fabricant predicted “open revolt” among Tories and Leave voters if MPs agreed to it.

However, Downing Street has described the prospect as “speculation”.

The Sunday Telegraph reported some activists were refusing to campaign for the party, while donations had “dried up”.

And former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab writes in the Mail on Sunday that Mrs May’s approach “threatens to damage the Conservatives for years”.

“There is now a danger that Brexit could be lost and that the government could fall – handing the keys to Downing Street to Corbyn,” he says.

BBC political correspondent justice, said the government would not be drawn on what it was willing to offer Labour.

“No 10 described as speculation reports that it would… enshrine in a law a promise to give Parliament a say on the terms of further negotiations with the EU, as a way of stopping a new Tory leader shifting to a harder Brexit.”

In a letter to Mr Corbyn, some Labour MPs have pointed out that – because the political declaration is not legally binding, and with Mrs May having promised to stand down – a future Tory PM could simply “rip up” any of her commitments.

Four shadow ministers were among 80 signatories of the Love Socialism Hate Brexit campaign letter pressing for a further public vote.

‘No legitimacy’

Any compromise deal agreed by Parliament will have “no legitimacy if it is not confirmed by the public”, it argues.

However, Labour is split on the subject, with a letter signed by 25 Labour MPs on Thursday arguing the opposite.

They warned it would “divide the country further and add uncertainty for business” and could be “exploited by the far-right, damage the trust of many core Labour voters and reduce our chances of winning a general election”.

The Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom argues in the Sunday Telegraph that a further referendum would be “the ultimate betrayal”.

“It would require lengthy delay, it would reignite the divisive debate, and since Parliament has so far failed to follow the first result, there is no reason to believe it would honour a second referendum either,” she writes.