Scotland's papers: Army 'ready for action' and trade deal speculation

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The Herald
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The Herald leads with further details of how the Army will support paramedics following what have many called a "crisis" in the Scottish Ambulance Service. The paper says 114 personnel will be brought in for work including non-emergency driving "primarily around Glasgow and Edinburgh".
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The i highlights how the plan will also involve firefighters and taxi drivers providing driving support while student paramedics will support emergency calls. It says hospital spaces will be repurposed in order to create more room for patients being taken to A&E.
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"Here comes the cavalry" is the Metro's take, saying Health Secretary Humza Yousaf has been "under pressure" to deliver support as patients have been experiencing "unacceptable" waits for ambulances.
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The Scottish Daily Mail reports that the first minister was criticised for claiming the problems faced by the emergency services were only due to the Covid-19 pandemic, despite the view that they had existed "for years".
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The Daily Telegraph reports that the UK is considering joining a US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, as "hope fades for a lone deal with America". It says Boris Johnson declined to say that a US-UK free trade deal could be reached by the 2024 UK general election. The paper's lead story comes from a "close ally" of French President Emmanuel Macron, who said France's position on the UN Security Council could be "put at the disposal of the EU" if its governments agree to his plans for EU military integration.
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The Daily Express says Britain is "firing up for a colossal post-Brexit deal" with America, Canada and Mexico. It says the multi-billion-pound trade tie-up would be a "huge boost to Britain's economy".
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The Times says the move would mark a "reorientation" of trade away from Europe. The paper says Downing Street viewed the PM's invitation to the White House as a sign of a "strengthening personal bond" with the US President.
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Energy bills are set to rise again in spring due to the global gas crisis, reports The Scotsman, which says millions could be driven into fuel poverty.
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The Edinburgh Evening News carries the same story, saying the predicted rise in bills could add between £178 and £294 to the typical price for gas and electricity when the new energy cap is set by Ofgem.
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Riffing off the problems the gas crisis has created for pig farmers, the Daily Star pits politicians against experts and asks "who's telling porkies?"
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The Scottish Sun reports the prime minister has told stars of Strictly Come Dancing to get vaccinated after three "refused".
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The National leads with what it calls a "pensions scandal", saying thousands of people - mostly women - have been underpaid due to "outdated IT systems" and "repeated human errors" made by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
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The Daily Record leads with claims of a brawl taking place at the funeral of a man who was convicted of murder and who died in prison, age 29.
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Residents in Glasgow are calling for an investigation over the decision to build new homes on green belt land, according to the Glasgow Times.
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The Courier reports that National Express has confirmed it is in talks to buy rival transport firm Stagecoach. Under the terms of the potential deal, National Express would be allowed to use Stagecoach depots for its coach operations, the paper says.
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A doctor in Aberdeen Royal Infirmary sent her colleague "hate-filled" messages, saying staff believed he was "gay or racist", reports the Press and Journal.
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And the Evening Express says the part of Marischal College at the University of Aberdeen could be brought back into use with possible plans for a natural history museum.

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