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Poll sees surge in Remain support

Cox accused names himself ‘Death to Traitors’

Jo Cox 4Thomas Mair, who appeared in court charged with the murder of Labour MP Jo Cox, gave his name as “Death to traitors, freedom for Britain”.

Mair appeared before Westminstef magistrates on charges relating to the death of Mrs Cox, 41, who was shot and stabbed in Birstall, West Yorkshire, on Thursday.

Members of her family gathered at the scene to thank people for their support and to pay tribute to the mother of two who was elected to the Batley and Spen constituency last year.

Speaking in the village’s market square Kim Leadbeater, Mrs Cox’s sister, said: “Jo would want us to focus on that which unites us not which divides us. She will live on through good people in the world.”

Mair, 52, wearing a grey tracksuit, faces charges of murder, grievous bodily harm, possession of a firearm with intent to commit an indictable offence and possession of an offensive weapon.

A fundraising campaign, which was launched by friends and family of Mrs Cox, has already raised more than £220,000.

The funds will support The Royal Voluntary Service, Hop not Hate and the White Helmets.

The killing of Mrs Cox appears to have swung voters behind Britain remaining in the European Union.

A ComRes poll for the Sunday Mirror shows the percentage wanting Britain to leave the  EU has fallen from 45% before Mrs Cox was killed on Thursday to 38% afterwards.

However, the data is based on a small sample. ComRes polled 2,046 people between Wednesday June 15 at 9pm on Thursday.

Most people had answered the questions before Mrs Cox was fatally shot on Thursday afternoon, and just 192 answers came in afterwards.

ComRes chairman Andrew Hawkins told the paper: “The figures should be treated with a degree of caution given the sample size.”

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Parliament recalled on Monday

Friday: Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said Parliament would be recalled on Monday following the death of Jo Cox, the party’s member for Batley and Spen who was killed in an attack in the street yesterday.

Mr Corby, who led a vigil in Westminster on Thursday night, was joined by the Prime Minister and other senior MPs in Mrs Cox’s constituency today. He  labelled the attack “an act of hatred”.

Hundreds yesterday attended a service in Birstall close to where her attacker allegedly shot her three times and ‘repeatedly stabbed her’ only hours beforehand.

A local 52-year-old man, named as Tommy Mair, was arrested soon after the incident in the Yorkshire constituency where she was elected only last year.

Mrs Cox, a 41-year-old mother of two, was rushed to Leeds General Infirmary after the attack but died shortly afterwards.

Campaigning for the European referendum was immediately suspended and remains suspended.

West Yorkshire Police said they were called to an incident at 12.53pm but at 1.48pm doctors pronounced her dead.

Mr Corbyn said in a tweet: “The whole of the Labour family, and indeed the whole country, is in shock and grief at the horrific murder of Jo Cox.”

Conservatives, Lib Dems and UKIP all announced they would not contest the by-election resulting from Mrs Cox’s death.

In Birstall,  Commons Chaplain Rose Hudson-Wilkin, Leeds Central MP Hilary Benn and Commons Speaker John Bercow joined the Prime Minister David Cameron and the Labour leader.

Mr Cameron said: “Where we see hatred, where we find division, where we see intolerance we must drive it out of our politics and out of our public life and out of our communities.”

Mrs Cox was married to Brendan and they have two young children. Tonight he issued a statement which said: “Jo believed in a better world and she fought for it every day of her life with an energy, and a zest for life that would exhaust most people.

“She would have wanted two things above all else to happen now, one that our precious children are bathed in love and two, that we all unite to fight against the hatred that killed her. Hate doesn’t have a creed, race or religion, it is poisonous.”

Ms Cox grew up in the constituency, attended Heckmondwike Grammar School and became the first in her family to graduate from university finishing her degree at Cambridge University in 1995.

Her career involved working all over the world for charities fighting to tackle poverty, suffering and discrimination. She worked with Oxfam, Save the Children and the NSPCC in the UK and in some of the world’s poorest and most war-torn regions.

Mrs Cox was national chair of Labour Women’s Network and a senior advisor to the anti-slavery charity, the Freedom Fund.

A dedicated campaigner nationally and locally, she focused heavily on fighting for public services, particularly against the decision to downgrade Dewsbury and District Hospital.

She was involved with efforts to strengthen the manufacturing base in Yorkshire and in campaigns and initiatives to tackle poverty and the cost of living crisis, such as Batley Food Bank.

Mrs Cox is the first sitting MP to be killed since 1990, when Conservative member Ian Gow died at the hands of Northern Irish terror groups.

 

 

 



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