The Papers: Cummings faces fresh claims as PM defends aide

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Reports that Dominic Cummings broke lockdown rules dominate the front pages for a second day as calls mount for Boris Johnson to sack his senior aide. The Sunday Mirror leads with allegations that Mr Cummings made two trips from London to Durham while Britons were under strict instructions not to travel. Downing Street has called the stories “inaccurate” and “false”.

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The Observer continues the coverage of the fresh claims levelled against Mr Cummings. A new testimony suggests he left the home where he was staying in Durham to visit a town 30 miles away. He was also allegedly seen in Durham on 19 April, days after being pictured in London having recovered from the virus, the paper reports.

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The Sunday Telegraph says the claims around Dominic Cummings “engulfs No 10”. A picture of Mr Cummings outside his London home on Saturday dominates the paper’s front page, as it does most other papers. When asked whether he would resign, Mr Cummings, photographed with a child’s ball and bicycle, replied to reporters: “Obviously not.”

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“Cummings and goings?” is the headline emblazoned on the Sunday People’s front page. The People says a “furious police czar” is calling for the PM’s adviser to be sacked following the claims he “flouted” lockdown for a second time. But other papers, including the Sunday Times and Mail on Sunday, lead their coverage of the story by reporting Boris Johnson’s defence of Mr Cummings.

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The Sunday Express leads on “safety plan ready to unlock Britain”. The paper focuses on the PM’s “series of crucial moves” to start easing lockdown, including “cash to help high streets reopen”. A photo of Mr Cummings is the lead image on the front page.

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The Daily Star Sunday leads on reports that police are interviewing a Premier League footballer who has been accused of taking part in a gang rape at a lockdown party. The controversy engulfing No 10 about Mr Cummings’ actions gets a smaller mention on the paper’s front page.

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