General election 2019: Parties concentrate on key messages as election day nearsBBC

  • Labour and the Tories will focus on key messages around the NHS and Brexit in the final days of the campaign.
  • While Labour talks about under-funding risks to patients, the Conservatives are promising an end to “gridlock”.
  • Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson has told campaigners in Bath that her message to stop Brexit was part of a “fight for the soul of our country”, adding: “This is about whether we are open or closed, generous or selfish, whether we reach out and work with others or pull up the drawbridge.”
  • And the SNP is proposing legislation to protect the NHS in Scotland from “exploitative” trade deals, with Nicola Sturgeon warning Mr Johnson poses the greatest threat to Scotland of “any prime minister in modern times”.
  • Conservatives – ‘Clear and present’ danger
    • The prime minister will try to keep the focus on Brexit and the “danger” of another inconclusive result in Thursday’s election.
    • Mr Johnson will use a speech later to warn there is a “clear and present” danger of another hung parliament if voters do not turn out to support the Conservatives, and they would “smash through the gridlock” if given a majority.
  • Labour – ‘On the brink’
    • Labour is pledging a “relentless focus” on the health service if it wins power after Thursday’s poll.
    • The party says reports produced by NHS trusts in England this month show a health service “in crisis and on the brink”.
    • An analysis it has conducted of more than 120 NHS trust board papers identified hundreds of risks to patient safety classed as “catastrophic” or “extreme”.
  • In other election developments:
    • Former Labour peer Lord Sugar has launched an attack on Jeremy Corbyn and urged voters to elect a Tory government in an article for The Sun
    • In an interview with The Guardian, Jeremy Corbyn has stood by his party’s strategy of focusing on winning Tory-held seats, amid concerns that Labour candidates defending seats have been left exposed
    • Ms Sturgeon and other Scottish leaders will take part in a debate on BBC Scotland later
    • Nigel Farage has criticised Mr Johnson’s Brexit deal, claiming it would lead to “years of agonising negotiations”
  • Use this concise guide to compare where the parties stand on key issues like Brexit, education and the NHS.

Brexit deal includes two-way customs checks, insists IrelandThe Guardian

  • Simon Coveney, Ireland’s foreign minister, has challenged Boris Johnson’s claim that under his Brexit deal there would be no checks or controls on goods moving between Northern Ireland and Britain.
  • Coveney insisted that under the terms of the withdrawal agreement the prime minister negotiated with the European Union there would be inspections on goods moving in both directions.
  • “It was very clear when the deal was done,” he said in Brussels on Monday. “The EU has made it clear they want to minimise the impact on goods coming from Great Britain to Northern Ireland, but at the same time goods coming from Great Britain to Northern Ireland will need to have some checks to ensure that the EU knows what is potentially coming into their market through Northern Ireland.”
  • The comments contradicted Johnson’s claims, repeated last Sunday, that there would be no checks on goods moving from Northern Ireland to Great Britain.