7 pictures of lonely journalists hoping for a Cypriot bank run

The bank run probably won't happen, but capital controls might stay for a while.

Sadly for those standing around outside Cypriot banks with cameras and notebooks this morning (and there are way more of them than anyone else right now)...  it might all turn out to be a bit of a snoozefest.

These journalists, for example, are definitely ready for the banks to open:

These journalists are also definitely ready for the banks to open:

These journalists are so definitely ready for the banks to open it's actually a bit painful:

Are we nearly there yet?


Why are the police so calm and unprovocative?

This parrot is trying to help the journalists stay positive:

There was a little excitement over the arrival of some armed guards(!) earlier, but as @spignal points out:


The reason there probably won't be Cyprus bank run is in these here capital controls. People can only take €300 from their account each day, so the emptying of accounts into socks just can't happen in one go.

Here are some other important details from the legislation, designed to ruin media fun today:

- You can only leave the country carrying €1,000

- You can't cash cheques

- You can't transfer (much) cash abroad.

Officially, the controls "shall apply for a seven day period starting from the day of its publication in the Official Gazette of the Republic" - but there's suspicion they might hang around for a bit longer. Here's Courtney Weaver and Michael Stothard in the FT:

This makes sense - those capital controls are the only thing standing between banks and a potential mob, so they're likely to stick around in one form or another, for quite some time.

Are we nearly there yet? Photograph: @JoeWSJ

Martha Gill writes the weekly Irrational Animals column. You can follow her on Twitter here: @Martha_Gill.

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Jeremy Corbyn challenged by Labour MPs to sack Ken Livingstone from defence review

Former mayor of London criticised at PLP meeting over comments on 7 July bombings. 

After Jeremy Corbyn's decision to give Labour MPs a free vote over air strikes in Syria, tonight's Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) meeting was less fractious than it could have been. But one grandee was still moved to declare that the "ferocity" of the attacks on the leader made it the most "uplifting" he had attended.

Margaret Beckett, the former foreign secretary, told the meeting: "We cannot unite the party if the leader's office is determined to divide us." Several MPs said afterwards that many of those who shared Corbyn's opposition to air strikes believed he had mishandled the process by appealing to MPs over the heads of the shadow cabinet and then to members. David Winnick declared that those who favoured military action faced a "shakedown" and deselection by Momentum activists. "It is completely unacceptable. They are a party within a party," he said of the Corbyn-aligned group. The "huge applause" for Hilary Benn, who favours intervention, far outweighed that for the leader, I'm told. 

There was also loud agreement when Jack Dromey condemned Ken Livingstone for blaming Tony Blair's invasion of Iraq for the 7 July 2005 bombings. Along with Angela Smith MP, Dromey demanded that Livingstone be sacked as the co-chair of Labour's defence review. Significantly, Benn said aftewards that he agreed with every word Dromey had said. Corbyn's office has previously said that it is up to the NEC, not the leader, whether the former London mayor holds the position. In reference to 7 July, an aide repeated Corbyn's statement that he preferred to "remember the brilliant words Ken used after 7/7". 

As on previous occasions, MPs complained that the leader failed to answer the questions that were put to him. A shadow minister told me that he "dodged" one on whether he believed the UK should end air strikes against Isis in Iraq. In reference to Syria, a Corbyn aide said afterwards that "There was significant support for the leader. There was a wide debate, with people speaking on both sides of the arguments." After David Cameron's decision to call a vote on air strikes for Wednesday, leaving only a day for debate, the number of Labour MPs backing intervention is likely to fall. One shadow minister told me that as few as 40-50 may back the government, though most expect the total to be closer to the original figure of 99. 

At the end of another remarkable day in Labour's history, a Corbyn aide concluded: "It was always going to be a bumpy ride when you have a leader who was elected by a large number outside parliament but whose support in the PLP is quite limited. There are a small number who find it hard to come to terms with that result."

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.