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Voting to begin in the UK in EU elections | Politics News

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Voting will get underway in the UK today to elect MEPs to the European parliament.

The Netherlands also goes to the polls on Thursday with the 26 other EU member states to follow over the next three days.

There are 12 UK regions with candidates from the Brexit Party and Change UK standing for the first time, along with the Conservatives, the Greens, the Liberal Democrats, the SNP, Plaid Cymru, Labour and a handful of smaller parties.

There are some new parties contesting the European elections in the UK this time round
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There are some new parties contesting the European elections in the UK this time round

MEPs in England, Wales and Scotland will be elected via a proportional representation voting system, which takes into account the parties’ total share of the vote in each region.

It is different to the first past the post system used in UK general elections, which sees individual MPs selected based on which candidate secure the most votes in each constituency.

The elections are due to be held in May
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There are 751 MEPs in the European Parliament

Northern Ireland will elect its MEPs using a single transferable vote system, with voters asked to rank the candidates in order of preference.

Polling stations in the UK will be open from 7am and close at 10pm, with each ballot paper to feature a list of parties with their candidates next to them.

Parties will often list as many candidates as there are MEPs for the region – for example, London elects eight MEPs, therefore most of the major parties have each put forward eight candidates.

The UK may have to hold EU Parliament elections
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The UK has representatives from 12 regions

:: The 12 UK electoral regions:

  • Eastern
  • East Midlands
  • London
  • Northern Ireland
  • North East
  • North West
  • Scotland
  • South East
  • South West
  • Wales
  • West Midlands
  • Yorkshire and Humber

The UK will elect 73 MEPs from across the 12 regions – the South East has the most with 10, while there are only three elected each from the North East and Northern Ireland.

The elections will influence who gets the top jobs in European Parliament
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The results will not be revealed until Sunday evening

Candidates will have to wait until Sunday evening to find out how they fared, as the results are kept under wraps until voting across all 28 EU member states is complete.

Once in place, the new parliament – made up of a total of 751 MEPs – will work with the European Council to pass EU laws, based on the recommendations of the European Commission.

EU law can relate to workers’ rights and citizens’ rights, consumer protection, as well as other issues like environmental, agricultural and fisheries policy.

The parliament also scrutinises EU institutions, decides the budget, and looks at petitions from EU citizens.

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British woman dies in Majorca on Edinburgh-bound Ryanair flight | UK News

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A British woman has died on a Ryanair flight as it was due to take off from Majorca’s Palma Airport.

The 58-year-old is believed to have fallen ill after taking her seat on the plane, which was bound for Edinburgh.

Emergency services went to the scene but she died on the aircraft, according to local media reports.

The plane had been scheduled to leave Palma at around 12pm but was delayed by three hours.

Ryanair said in a statement: “This flight from Palma to Edinburgh (22 May) was delayed ahead of take-off after a customer became ill prior to departure.

“Paramedics boarded the aircraft after medical assistance was requested but the customer sadly passed away.

“Ryanair extends its deepest sympathies to the bereaved and is providing any assistance required.”

The Foreign Office said it was “supporting the family of a British woman following her death in Spain”.

Local media reports say a post-mortem will be carried out on Thursday.

In 2015, mother-of-two Davina Taverner collapsed on a Ryanair flight to Lanzarote after suffering heart problems while in the toilets.

The 47-year-old was pronounced dead on the plane.

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FIFA u-turn over expanded 2022 World Cup

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FIFA has said the 2022 World Cup in Qatar will not be expanded to 48 teams as originally planned and will instead stick to 32.

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