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Rishi Sunak has sacked Suella Braverman, the controversial home secretary, after she defied the prime minister’s authority last week.
A Downing Street official said Sunak had asked Braverman to leave the government and she had accepted in what would be a wider reshuffle on Monday.
Sunak sacked Braverman after she prompted widespread anger with her comments on rough sleeping being a “lifestyle choice” and criticism of the Metropolitan Police’s handling of pro-Palestinian protests in recent days.
The changes in Sunak’s cabinet are likely to be the British premier’s final chance to stamp his authority on the Conservative party’s leadership team ahead of a general election expected next year.
Sunak will portray the moves as a chance to promote younger ministers and clear out some underperforming members of the cabinet.
Braverman’s future was plunged into doubt last week when she defied Number 10’s instructions to tone down an article comparing the pro-Palestinian Armistice Day rally to sectarian marches in Northern Ireland.
She also appeared to undermine the operational independence of the Metropolitan Police by arguing in the piece that, during the Covid-19 pandemic, lockdown objectors were “given no quarter” by police officers while Black Lives Matter demonstrators were “allowed to break rules”.
Sunak was also uncomfortable with Braverman’s comments on social media platform X, formerly Twitter, that homeless people living in tents had taken a “lifestyle choice”.
Her sacking comes just 13 months after she was forced to resign from the same job by former prime minister Liz Truss for a technical security breach in which she used her personal email to send information relating to government business.
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