Paper review: ‘Playing politics’ with knife crime

Image caption The father of murdered teen Jodie Chesney has called on those who may know who stabbed his 17-year-old daughter to come forward. “Surely nobody who knows who did this thinks it is OK,” said Peter Chesney. “Josie needs justice”. It comes as another teenager died of multiple stab wounds in West Kensington, London.
Image caption The Express quotes one of Britain’s leading police chiefs as he calls for those caught carrying a knife to be sent ‘straight to jail’. Chief Constable Andy Cooke, of Merseyside Police, said judges should issue “harsh” sentences as knife crime continues to soar in the UK.
Image caption ‘Playing politics… as yet another teen dies’ is the Metro headline after Chancellor Philip Hammond was accused of using the spike in knife crime on Britain’s streets “to blackmail MPs over Brexit”. Mr Hammond said money set aside to manage a no-deal Brexit could be spent on policing instead, if Parliament backed Mrs May’s EU withdrawal deal next week.
Image caption ‘Britain on a knife-edge’ is the dramatic headline in the Mirror, as it leads on reporter Martin Bagot’s experience of interviewing a trauma surgeon just as another teenage victim of a stabbing was rushed into the hospital.
Image caption ‘May makes last-ditch EU plea’ declares the i, amid suggestions of a total collapse of negotiations and “a heavy defeat” in the Commons next Tuesday. The paper also claims Brexiteers are under pressure, as splits emerge within the hardline European Research Group.
Image caption The Guardian also leads on Theresa May’s plea to EU leaders, as she enters the final throes of negotiation ahead of the parliamentary vote on 12 March. The paper alludes to “cabinet chaos” as critics of the prime minister express astonishment at her “refusal to change course in the face of defeat”.
Image caption The Times reports on Theresa May’s speech in Grimsby later, in which she will turn her fire on the EU over the backstop. It reports that Remain-supporting cabinet members are pressing the PM to hold a series of ‘indicative votes’ to find a common Brexit policy – or face ceding control to Parliament. The main image shows violinist Nicola Benedetti as she is made a CBE.
Image caption The ongoing anti-Semitism crisis in the Labour party dominates the Mail’s front page. The paper reports that Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour party are facing “a humiliating full-scale, official inquiry” by the Equality and Human Rights Commission. It claims the Commission is considering a formal probe into whether the party “unlawfully discriminated” against Jews. Labour said it will co-operate fully but rejects “completely” any suggestion it acted unlawfully.
Image caption The Telegraph reports on a new code of conduct, launched by the Treasury, which will force financial institutions to report on how much they invest in businesses run by women. It follows a campaign by the paper to close the gender funding gap. In a separate story, London Mayor Sadiq Khan is accused of “oversimplifying” after he sought to blame the rise in knife crime on Tory education policies.
Image caption The FT leads with a picture of Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as he fights to maintain his leadership amid rumours of corruption in his party. The main story focuses on a decision by the European Central Bank to keep interest rates ‘”at historic lows” as part of a package of stimuli to revive the Eurozone’s “faltering economy”.

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