Newspaper headlines: Syria attack focus for front pages

By BBC News

  • Published
Children being treated by medics following suspected chemical weapons attack in what is said to be DoumaImage source, Reuters

Donald Trump's condemnation of Syria and its allies over the suspected chemical weapons attack in the rebel-held town of Douma is featured on a number of front pages.

The Daily Telegraph says the remarks contained "his harshest criticism of the Russian leader since taking office" - and broke a reluctance to criticise Vladimir Putin directly.

The Times leader column insists Russia "cannot be allowed to block investigations into yet another breach of the chemical weapons convention" as "Syria's shame is Moscow's too".

For the Daily Telegraph, Russia is following its usual template. "It first says there has been no attack, then rejects any involvement if there has been, and finally blames the rebels for killing their own people".

Other papers cast their net wider than Moscow.

According to the Sun, "the West is not innocent" as a combination of "ignorance, cowardice and political calculation" meant everyone "turned a blinding eye" to the unfolding horror in Syria.

The Guardian criticises the repeated flip-flopping of US policy on Syria, arguing it has gone from "indecisive" under Barack Obama to "downright chaotic" under Donald Trump.

For the Mirror, "dropping more bombs is not the answer". Painstaking diplomacy, it says, "is more likely to produce a negotiated settlement".

The Guardian's lead is on leaked Home Office documents which suggest police cuts "likely contributed" to a rise in violent crime.

It says the leaks "place a question mark" over the claim by the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, that police cuts were not to blame and argues the row over funding "threatens to overshadow" the government's new strategy to tackle the increase.

Image source, PA

The former Conservative police minister Mike Penning has told the Daily Express police officers to be need to be more confident in using targeted stop-and-search powers.

'Spend wisely'

They can pretend the increase in fatal stabbings and fall in police numbers are not connected, it says, "but members of the public at the sharp end of crime will beg to differ".

The Sun accepts the police might have a case for more cash but argues "they need to spend their existing funds more wisely first". Its editorial calls on the home secretary to "demand top cops get their priorities straight".

Elsewhere, the Daily Mail says senior Conservatives have called on the government to rethink "crippling" funding cuts to the Open University, after the number of students enrolling on its courses fell by more than a quarter in five years.

The Mail's leader column hails the Open University as a "powerful engine of social mobility" and argues the current review of higher education funding "must make it a special case".

Change in culture

Image source, Getty Images

According to the paper's leader column, "there has to be a change in culture", after the use of such injections increased over the past five years.

It urges doctors to make a determined effort to save money that could instead be used for long-term prevention, advice and psychological therapies.

Photographs of Maureen Lipman appear in several papers, after she took part in a demonstration against Jeremy Corbyn, organised by the Campaign Against Antisemitism.

Kay delights fans

The Guardian thinks the figures will add to the dismay over "rabbit hutch Britain" but says developers argue that micro-homes "offer a solution to the urban housing crisis".

Finally, the first public appearance by Peter Kay since he cancelled a tour for family reasons has excited a number of papers.

Image source, @NeilHailwood

According to the Daily Telegraph, the comedian looked "tanned and trim" at a charity screening of his Car Share show on Saturday night.

The Daily Express says the stand-up was "full of energy" as he "bounded on stage" in Blackpool.