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Portrait of the week: Rioting in Cardiff, rising migration and falling inflation

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A crash in which a 15- and a 16-year-old boy riding on an electric bike were killed led to rioting, the burning of cars and attacks on police in the Ely estate in Cardiff; social media had said the deaths followed a police chase, which the police denied. But video evidence seemed to show a chase. During the riot, one of the boys' mothers posted a Facebook message: 'Please I beg you all to stop and let my son be moved to hospital so I can see him.' A woman hit on 10 May by a police motorcycle escorting the Duchess of Edinburgh died. Rishi Sunak, the Prime Minister, in a classic game of hunt-the-issue, asked his ethics adviser, Laurie Magnus, to look at the case of Suella Braverman, the Home Secretary, reported to have asked a civil servant to see if she could take a speed-awareness course privately as a punishment for speeding; after being told that this was not a civil service task, she was said to have asked a special adviser to see if she could do something similar, and, when told she could not, she decided to accept penalty points. Net legal migration reached unprecedented levels. The government will bar dependants of foreign students who are not on research-based postgraduate courses.

The rate of inflation fell to 8.7 per cent from 10.1 per cent. Energy bills were expected to drop below the government price guarantee by the end of June. Together with 'resilient demand', this made the International Monetary Fund think that Britain would not after all go into recession. Public-sector borrowing rose in April to £25.6 billion, from £13.7 billion in April 2022. Sinn Fein won the largest number of seats in Northern Ireland council elections: 144 (39 more than in 2019). The Democratic Unionists remained static at 122; the Alliance party won 67 (up by 14), the Ulster Unionists 54 (down by 21) and the SDLP 39 (down by 20).

Boris Johnson was referred to police again over new claims he broke Covid regulations between June 2020 and May 2021; he called the move 'a politically motivated stitch-up'. John Allan resigned after eight years as chairman of Tesco after allegations over his conduct; he admitted to making a comment to a female worker about a dress suiting her figure. Phillip Schofield resigned after 20 years as a presenter on This Morning. Rolf Harris the entertainer, who was jailed for five years for indecent assaults on girls, died aged 93. Martin Amis the novelist died aged 73. Jeremy Clarke, the Low Life columnist of The Spectator since 2001, died aged 66.


President Joe Biden said the United States would allow allies to send American-made F-16 jets to Ukraine and would help train Ukrainian pilots. The decision was announced at the G7 summit in Japan, which Volodymyr Zelensky, the President of Ukraine, addressed. Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of the Wagner mercenaries used by Russia, said that the ruined city of Bakhmut was 'completely taken'. Mr Zelensky denied this. Russia reported that armed forces had crossed from Ukraine into the Belgorod region; Kyiv said that the men were Russian citizens from groups called the Liberty of Russia Legion and the Russian Volunteer Corps. Before the G7 summit, Mr Zelensky had addressed the Arab League in Saudi Arabia, where he accused some Arab leaders of 'turning a blind eye' to Russia's invasion of Ukraine; President Bashar al-Assad of Syria attended that summit. Papua New Guinea declared a public holiday for a visit by President Biden, but he decided instead to fly straight home, where a crisis on public debt provision awaited him.

The Sudanese army fought for control of its main airbase near Khartoum against attacks by the Rapid Support Forces; a new seven-day truce was negotiated by the United States and Saudi Arabia. President Gustavo Petro of Colombia suspended a ceasefire with EMC-Farc, a rebel splinter-group. Dr Kenneth Elliott, an Australian aged 88, was released by Al Qaeda seven years after being taken captive near the border between Mali and Burkina Faso. A 10th-century codex of the Hebrew Bible bought in 1929 by David Solomon Sassoon for £350 and later by the British Rail Pension Fund was auctioned in New York for $38 million. New Democracy, the centrist party of the Prime Minister of Greece, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, gained five seats short of a majority and would have another go in June. Climate protestors poured charcoal into the Trevi Fountain in Rome, which meant that 65,000 gallons of water had to be thrown away.

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