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Thousands call for Captain Cook statue to be REMOVED over his links to ‘colonialism and genocide’

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thousands call for captain cook statue to be removed over his links to colonialism and genocide

A 50-year-old statue of Captain Cook is under threat after activists petitioned for it to be torn down over his links to ‘colonialism and genocide’.

The statue in Cairns has attracted controversy over the British Royal Navy captain’s treatment of Aboriginal people when his ship landed in Australia.

The petition claims the statue is a ‘slap in the face to all indigenous people’, saying Cook’s legacy was one of ‘forced removal, slavery, genocide and stolen land’. 

Two other statues of the explorer, both in Sydney, have already been defaced as Black Lives Matter protests shine a light on racial inequality.

The global movement has prompted scrutiny of Australia’s history of colonialism, with growing calls for statues of Captain Cook to be removed. 

The Captain Cook statue in Cairns (pictured) has stood since 1972, but protesters want it to be taken down

The Captain Cook statue in Cairns (pictured) has stood since 1972, but protesters want it to be taken down

The Captain Cook statue in Cairns (pictured) has stood since 1972, but protesters want it to be taken down

Black Lives Matter protests in Australia (pictured on June 13 in Perth) have also focused on the inequalities faced by indigenous Australians

Black Lives Matter protests in Australia (pictured on June 13 in Perth) have also focused on the inequalities faced by indigenous Australians

Black Lives Matter protests in Australia (pictured on June 13 in Perth) have also focused on the inequalities faced by indigenous Australians

The petition on Change.org has already been signed by more than 12,000 people (pictured) who say the Captain Cook statue should be removed

The petition on Change.org has already been signed by more than 12,000 people (pictured) who say the Captain Cook statue should be removed

The petition on Change.org has already been signed by more than 12,000 people (pictured) who say the Captain Cook statue should be removed

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has defended Cook’s legacy and controversially declared there was ‘no slavery in Australia’ – something he has since apologised for.

The petition for the Cairns statue to be removed, signed by more than 12,000 people as of Tuesday morning, reads: ‘Since 1972, the James Cook statue on Sheridan Street has stood as a symbol of colonialism and genocide. 

‘It’s a slap in the face to all indigenous people.

‘For us it represents dispossession, forced removal, slavery, genocide, stolen land, and loss of culture – among many other things.

‘I am calling on Cairns Regional Council and Cairns Mayor Mr Bob Manning to take action today and remove this statue. This would be a huge step forward in uniting the community and honouring our First Nation’s people.

Protesters show their support during the Black Lives Matter rally at Sydney Town Hall on June 12 (pictured)

Protesters show their support during the Black Lives Matter rally at Sydney Town Hall on June 12 (pictured)

Protesters show their support during the Black Lives Matter rally at Sydney Town Hall on June 12 (pictured)

A worker paints over graffiti on a Captain Cook statue in Sydney (pictured on June 15) after the second such act of vandalism amid recent anti-racism protests

A worker paints over graffiti on a Captain Cook statue in Sydney (pictured on June 15) after the second such act of vandalism amid recent anti-racism protests

A worker paints over graffiti on a Captain Cook statue in Sydney (pictured on June 15) after the second such act of vandalism amid recent anti-racism protests 

‘I also call on non-indigenous Australians to stand with us. The #BlackLivesMatter movement is as urgent here on your own doorsteps as it is on the streets of Minneapolis. 

‘For you to demand the removal of this offensive and outdated statue shows your willingness to look Australia’s ugly history right in the eye, and say no more.’ 

Dozens of statues linked to slavery and racial inequality have been torn down across the world during the Black Lives Matter protests.

In the UK, officials were even forced to board up a London war memorial to protect it from activists during a recent protest. 

But many fear the removal of the statues would erase a part of history.

A young woman who joined the Black Lives Matter protest in Melbourne on June 6 (pictured) holds a sign which reads 'Aboroginal Lives Matter'

A young woman who joined the Black Lives Matter protest in Melbourne on June 6 (pictured) holds a sign which reads 'Aboroginal Lives Matter'

A young woman who joined the Black Lives Matter protest in Melbourne on June 6 (pictured) holds a sign which reads ‘Aboroginal Lives Matter’

Statues of Captain James Cook, including this one in Sydney's Hyde Park (pictured on June 14) have been graffitied by those who believe they should be torn down

Statues of Captain James Cook, including this one in Sydney's Hyde Park (pictured on June 14) have been graffitied by those who believe they should be torn down

Statues of Captain James Cook, including this one in Sydney’s Hyde Park (pictured on June 14) have been graffitied by those who believe they should be torn down

One woman who signed the petition wrote: ‘We can learn Australian history in books. 

‘There are no statues of Hitler in Germany yet we still were taught the horrible things he did without statues. Tear it down.’

‘It’s atrocious that this is still standing!’, another added.

‘Such a slap in the face to the indigenous Australians that have to see this horrific reminder of the genocide of their people.’

Home affairs minister Peter Dutton has already told 9News he wants the statues to stay. 

‘I don’t think ripping pages out of history books and brushing over parts of history you don’t agree with or you don’t like is really something the Australian public is going to embrace,’ he said.

‘There are good and bad parts of our history. You learn from that.’

This Cook statue in Sydney's Hyde Park was also vandalised (pictured on June 14), leading to two people being charged

This Cook statue in Sydney's Hyde Park was also vandalised (pictured on June 14), leading to two people being charged

This Cook statue in Sydney’s Hyde Park was also vandalised (pictured on June 14), leading to two people being charged

Captain James Cook (pictured) opened the door to colonisation and a collapse in the indigenous population caused by massacres, disease and forced removal from their land

Captain James Cook (pictured) opened the door to colonisation and a collapse in the indigenous population caused by massacres, disease and forced removal from their land

Captain James Cook (pictured) opened the door to colonisation and a collapse in the indigenous population caused by massacres, disease and forced removal from their land

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese has also voiced his support for the statues to stay.

‘You can’t rewrite history, you have to learn from it,’ he told Sydney radio 2GB.

‘The idea that you go back to year zero of history is in my view, just quite frankly unacceptable.’ 

Mr Morrison has previously said he wanted to help the public to gain a better understanding of  Captain Cook’s historic voyage.

‘That voyage is the reason Australia is what it is today and it’s important we take the opportunity to reflect on it,’ Mr Morrison said.

Protesters show their support during the Black Lives Matter Rally at Langley Park on June 13 in Perth (pictured)

Protesters show their support during the Black Lives Matter Rally at Langley Park on June 13 in Perth (pictured)

Protesters show their support during the Black Lives Matter Rally at Langley Park on June 13 in Perth (pictured)

HISTORY OF COOK’S ENDEAVOUR

The HMS Endeavour was a British research vessel sailed by Captain James Cook. 

Captain Cook set off from England in the Endeavour in 1768 in search of Australia – then known as the ‘unknown Southern Land’.

The Endeavour was a small ship – less than 100ft long – and housed a crew of around 100 sailors.  

Before coming to Australia, Captain Cook reached New Zealand in 1769.

He circumnavigated New Zealand’s North and South Islands and drew the first complete chart of the country’s coast.

The Endeavour was the first ship to reach the East Coast of Australia, landing in Botany Bay in 1770.

The vessel returned to England in 1771 and was largely forgotten before it was sold in 1775 and renamed The Lord Sandwich.  

It was decommissioned shortly after its return to Britain and was then sold by the Royal Navy. 

She was called into action when Britain hired her as a transport vessel for troops to help fight the American War of Independence. 

The last sighting of the HMS Endeavour was around 1778 and it was scuttled — or deliberately sunk — in the harbour off the coast of Rhode Island. 

The Endeavour was a small ship - less than 100ft long - and housed a crew of around 100 sailors (pictured). It was used to transport British soldiers during the American War of Independence and was deliberately sunk in 1778

The Endeavour was a small ship - less than 100ft long - and housed a crew of around 100 sailors (pictured). It was used to transport British soldiers during the American War of Independence and was deliberately sunk in 1778

The Endeavour was a small ship – less than 100ft long – and housed a crew of around 100 sailors (pictured). It was used to transport British soldiers during the American War of Independence and was deliberately sunk in 1778 

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Controversial ‘self-identity’ gender plan set to be axed after government U-turn on policy  

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controversial self identity gender plan set to be axed after government u turn on policy

Plans to allow people to ‘self-identify’ as a different gender will be formally dropped this week after they sparked controversy.

Ministers have decided to scrap proposals to permit gender on birth certificates being changed without a medical diagnosis.

Instead, it is believed the cost of changing gender as it currently stands will be made cheaper. 

Equalities Minister Liz Truss, pictured, will this week publish the Government’s new stance on the 2004 Gender Recognition Act. Proposals to alter the legislation were sent out for consultation in 2018. But plans to allow people to change the gender on their birth certificate without a medical diagnosis have been dropped. The Government says it believes the current legislation is 'sufficient' to support people's right to change their sex.

Equalities Minister Liz Truss, pictured, will this week publish the Government’s new stance on the 2004 Gender Recognition Act. Proposals to alter the legislation were sent out for consultation in 2018. But plans to allow people to change the gender on their birth certificate without a medical diagnosis have been dropped. The Government says it believes the current legislation is ‘sufficient’ to support people’s right to change their sex.

The proposals to alter the 2004 Gender Recognition Act were sent out for consultation in 2018. 

Liz Truss, the equalities minister, will this week publish the Government’s new stance on the policy.

But a Government source told the Sunday Times: ‘We think that the current legislation, which supports people’s rights to change their sex, is sufficient.’

At the moment, those wishing to change sex have to pay £140 and apply to a panel for a gender recognition certificate.

Harry Potter author JK Rowling is in the spotlight again because her new book, Troubled Blood, features a 'transvestite serial killer'. Rowling has come under fire in the past for making transphobic remarks on Twitter. Transgender activists have described Rowling as a 'TERF', a derisive acronym for 'trans-exclusionary radical feminist'.

Harry Potter author JK Rowling is in the spotlight again because her new book, Troubled Blood, features a ‘transvestite serial killer’. Rowling has come under fire in the past for making transphobic remarks on Twitter. Transgender activists have described Rowling as a ‘TERF’, a derisive acronym for ‘trans-exclusionary radical feminist’.

They have to supply two reports stating they have suffered from gender dysphoria, which normally come from their GP and another doctor or psychologist. 

Tory MPs claimed Boris Johnson developed cold feet about scrapping the reforms after being influenced by his fiancée Carrie Symonds.

Trans rights activists have said failing to liberalise the law would be a ‘Section 28 moment’, referring to a 1988 ban on councils and schools ‘promoting homosexuality’. 

It comes after author JK Rowling was accused of transphobia after tweeting her opinions about the importance of biological sex. 

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ANDREW PIERCE: How Tory jail cuts hacked off David Cameron’s top aide

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andrew pierce how tory jail cuts hacked off david camerons top aide

Few Tory luminaries, it appears, had more harrowing personal experiences of the coalition government’s austerity measures than David Cameron‘s former Downing Street communications director Andy Coulson.

The ex-News of the World editor, who was jailed for 18 months in 2014 for presiding over an epidemic of phone hacking at his newspaper a decade earlier, has discussed the experience in an interview with the Crisis What Crisis? podcast, which he usually presents.

He described his grim journey in a prison van from the Old Bailey to the Category A Belmarsh jail in South-East London: ‘The building is out of central casting: enormous American-style prison walls, massive gates, you’re in no doubt you’re going to prison.’ 

Coulson, 52, who now runs a crisis management firm, added that he spent most of the time in his cell. ‘You would be allowed out for an hour and then do another 23 hours.’

Andy Coulson, the ex-News of the World editor, has discussed the experience in an interview with the Crisis What Crisis? podcast

Andy Coulson, the ex-News of the World editor, has discussed the experience in an interview with the Crisis What Crisis? podcast

But the most poignant recollection came when Coulson asked why he was not in an open prison, the normal category for someone convicted of his type of crime. A warder replied: ‘Tory cuts, Andy.’

 Bojo as PM is ‘stranger than fiction’

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One-time New Labour cheerleader Robert Harris — author of best-selling thrillers such as Fatherland and Enigma — also wrote a thinly disguised attack on Tony Blair entitled The Ghost, which was turned into a film starring Pierce Brosnan.

Asked by the New Statesman if he would subject Boris Johnson to the same literary treatment, Harris said: ‘It’s a cliche but when the politicians have become such extraordinary figures, fiction withers and dies in the face of them . . . 

‘If I tried to write a novel in which Donald Trump became president, and carried on the way he has, or where Johnson would be PM, everyone would say, ‘No. This doesn’t obey plausible rules.’ ‘

 KINNOCK kicks the loony left

That hammer of the Left Lord Kinnock can’t believe the Militant tendency returned to hijack Labour under Jeremy Corbyn in the form of Momentum. ‘I thought I’d killed them off,’ says the former Labour leader. ‘They did go away for 30 years and came back not one bloody millisecond wiser.’ Which aspect of the Trot revival does he have most contempt for? ‘The superficiality and use of slogans in place of real policies. The manifesto was packed with promises . . . People still believe in the spirit of Christmas but not in the Tooth Fairy.’ For once he’s right. 

 Impressionist Rory Bremner has the measure of Downing Street. ‘Like storms,

Government U-turns are now so frequent we’re going to have to give them names,’ he says. Should the first one be Boris?

When Sir Keir Starmer closes Labour’s virtual three-day party conference tomorrow, organisers may reflect on their wisdom in choosing Babl Cloud to handle the tech. Its boss is Brexiteer Jonathan Grant, who once retweeted this by the Bruges Group: ‘The cold hard truth is that it’s Boris’s Brexit or not at all.’ A bit embarrassing for Starmer, who once pledged to put Brexit to a second referendum.

 Veteran singer-songwriter Van Morrison has released three absurd anti-lockdown protest songs. They bring to mind broadcaster Mark Ellen’s telling observation about the irascible singer: ‘There are two types of people in this world. Those who love Van Morrison. And those who’ve met Van Morrison.’

 If ‘frivolous’ demands for Covid tests really are responsible for the capacity shortfall, as one minister has suggested, the Government only has itself to blame. Its adverts are running with the message: ‘At the first sign of a cough, stay at home and get tested.’

 Former Chancellor Ken Clarke, 80, was showered with compliments when he took his seat in the House of Lords last week, but Tory MP Damian Green points out: ‘The great thing about all these (justified) Twitter tributes to Ken is that you absolutely know he won’t see any of them.’ Clarke famously never looks at social media.

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Former head of the Supreme Court Baroness Hale says Parliament ‘surrendered’ its powers

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former head of the supreme court baroness hale says parliament surrendered its powers

The supreme court’s first female president has said Parliament ‘surrendered’ its powers over to the Government amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Baroness Brenda Hale, who served as president at the UK’s highest court from 2017- 2020, criticised the draconian measures and ‘sweeping’ powers being enforced on the British public without the scrutiny of Parliament. 

Her comments come as the Government seeks to extend the emergency coronavirus powers for a further six months in an effort to control a second devastating wave of coronavirus.

Baroness Brenda Hale, who served as president at the UK's highest court from 2017- 2020, criticised 'sweeping' powers being enforced on the public without the scrutiny of Parliament

Baroness Brenda Hale, who served as president at the UK’s highest court from 2017- 2020, criticised ‘sweeping’ powers being enforced on the public without the scrutiny of Parliament

In an essay seen by The Guardian, the baroness wrote: ‘It is not surprising the police were as confused as the public as to what was law and what was not.’

Referencing the Prime Minister’s chief advisor Dominic Cummings, the former judge went on to describe how there was confusion among Government ministers themselves as to what the rules were. 

She continued: ‘A certain government adviser obviously did know what the regulations were and what they said.’

Baroness Hale also explained that Parliament ‘did surrender control to the government at a crucial time’ and urged ministers to now restore a ‘properly functioning constitution’.

She added: ‘My plea is that we get back to a properly functioning constitution as soon as we possibly can.’ 

The baroness’ calls come as senior Tories plan a parliamentary lock to prevent Boris Johnson having the final say on new lockdown measures after restrictions on the public’s freedom, such as the Rule of Six, were introduced without a debate in the Commons. 

Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee, is planning to table an amendment that would force ministers to put any new measures to a vote first. 

This week it was revealed that Tories plan a parliamentary lock to prevent Boris Johnson having the final say on new lockdown measures

This week it was revealed that Tories plan a parliamentary lock to prevent Boris Johnson having the final say on new lockdown measures

Sir Graham Brady (pictured) is looking to force a vote by MPs on emergency coronavirus measures

Sir Graham Brady (pictured) is looking to force a vote by MPs on emergency coronavirus measures

The move comes as Boris Johnson announced that anyone in England who refuses to obey an order to self-isolate could face a fine of up to £10,000.

The Altrincham and Sale West MP told The Sunday Telegraph that he would take the opportunity to seek to amend the legislation when the Government comes to renew the emergency powers in the Coronavirus Act 2020.

The move is likely to attract significant support from Conservative MPs unhappy at the extensive powers taken by ministers with little or no parliamentary scrutiny.

Sir Graham told the Telegraph: ‘In March, Parliament gave the Government sweeping emergency powers at a time when Parliament was about to go into recess and there was realistic concern that NHS care capacity might be overwhelmed by Covid-19.

‘We now know that the NHS coped well with the challenge of the virus and Parliament has been sitting largely since April. 

‘There is now no justification for ministers ruling by emergency powers without reference to normal democratic processes.’ 

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