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Prince Harry: Sculpture filled with human blood ‘to be projected on to St Paul’s Cathedral’ after duke’s kill claim | UK News

Human blood is set to “drench” one of the UK’s most famous landmarks in a protest over Prince Harry’s controversial remarks about the number of people he killed in Afghanistan.

Russian artist Andrei Molodkin says he will project a sculpture featuring blood donated by Afghans on to St Paul’s Cathedral in the coming days, along with footage of the Duke of Sussex.

It comes after Harry faced criticism for revealing in his memoir that he killed 25 Taliban fighters while serving in Afghanistan, writing that it was “not a number that fills me with satisfaction, but nor does it embarrass me”.

The prince also admitted that he did not think of those he killed as “people”, but instead as “chess pieces” that had been taken off the board.

Britain's Prince Harry sits in his position in a Spartan armoured vehicle in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan February 18, 2008
Prince Harry pictured serving in Afghanistan in 2008

Molodkin told Sky News that Harry’s remarks had made him “very, very angry” and the idea of his project “is to drench St Paul’s Cathedral in the blood of Afghani people”.

“They read they are just ‘chess figures’… for some prince hunting by helicopter,” he said. “It looked like a safari situation.

“How he told it, for him it’s like a computer game.”

The artwork contains blood donated by Afghans, says Andrei Molodkin
The sculpture is called Royal Blood

Blood ‘pumped’ into royal coat of arms

Molodkin said four Afghans in Calais had already given blood for the sculpture and another five Afghans in the UK will donate when the stunt is carried out before the end of March.

The artist said about 1,250ml of blood will be used for the artwork after being taken from donors by a registered nurse, kept in a fridge and then “pumped” into the sculpture of the royal coat of arms.

Explaining how the project will work, he said: “Blood will go in the royal coat of arms, it will circulate in there.

“It will be projected… on to the cathedral – so all the cathedral will be in the blood of Afghani people.”

Moldokin said a video featuring Prince Harry will also be projected on to the cathedral.

People walking in the rain by St. Paul's Cathedral in London. Parts of the UK face ice and heavy rain with the potential for flooding as the holiday period continues. Picture date: Wednesday December 28, 2022.

Artist will try to take blood from inside cathedral

Molodkin said he will attempt to take the Afghans’ blood inside the cathedral – where Harry’s parents, King Charles and Diana, were married – but he has not approached St Paul’s to seek permission.

“I think in the church, you can give the blood,” he said.

“It’s a cathedral – it’s for everyone. Everyone can come there and pray. Donating blood, it’s kind of a way of praying.”

Sky News approached St Paul’s Cathedral for comment but did not receive a response.

The artwork contains blood donated by Afghans, says Andrei Molodkin
The artwork contains blood donated by Afghans, says Andrei Molodkin

Molodkin, who used to serve in the Soviet Union’s army, said he explained to all the Afghan donors why they were giving blood.

Asked how they felt about Harry’s remarks, he replied: “I think they are very angry.”

He added: “Even in the army, you’re scared to participate in the shooting of others… you’re very stressed about. But he thinks it’s a video game.”

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Afghan on Harry: ‘We should get compensation’

Artist cannot return to Russia over Putin sculpture

Molodkin, who now lives in the south of France, hit the headlines last year after he produced a sculpture featuring an image of Vladimir Putin that was filled with blood donated by Ukrainian fighters.

“Now I can’t go back to Russia,” he told Sky News.

He believes he would face jail for his artwork if he returns to his home country under its current laws.

“I can’t go there while [Putin] still has power but I truly believe it’s not possible to continue like this,” he added.

“People who kill so many people and start a blood war like this… and try to brainwash… can’t stay longer.”

The controversial artist who uses blood and oil to make his point

  • To coincide with the World Cup in Qatar last December, Andrei Molodkin unveiled a replica of the World Cup trophy that slowly filled with crude oil. It had a symbolic price of $150m – a figure that matched the amount of money allegedly spent on bribes and kickbacks to FIFA officials
  • Last August, Molodkin presented a sculpture of the White House that reportedly contained the radioactive blood of Nagasaki-born men to commemorate the 77th anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombs
  • In May last year, Molodkin showcased a glass portrait of Vladimir Putin which was filled with the blood of Ukrainian soldiers. An image of the artwork was said to have been live-streamed near Moscow’s Red Square as Mr Putin oversaw Russia’s Victory Day parade
  • Back in 2013, Molodkin opened an exhibition called Catholic Blood that featured an installation where he pumped blood donated solely by Catholics around his replica of the Rose Window at Westminster Abbey, which he saw as a Protestant symbol
Artist Andrei Molodkin
Andrei Molodkin says he has been creating artwork containing human blood for more than a decade

Molodkin said he has “worked with human blood for 15 years” and the sculptures he creates “represent the symbol of power”, adding: “Then the people who are abused by this power, I ask them to donate blood for this”.

Read more:
Biggest revelations from Harry’s memoir
Taliban bans women from universities

Harry’s comments in his book prompted criticism from senior military figures, with Admiral Lord West – the former head of the Royal Navy – reportedly calling the prince “very stupid” and warning he had increased the risk of threat against the Invictus Games.

Taliban officials called for Harry to be put on trial, with a senior leader in the group saying the militants he killed were “not chess pieces, they were humans”.

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In response to the criticism, Harry told Late Show host Stephen Colbert it was a “dangerous lie” to say he had “somehow boasted” about the number of people he killed in Afghanistan.

The duke carried out two tours in Afghanistan during his time in the military, including one tour between 2012 and 2013 when he served as an Apache attack helicopter co-pilot gunner.

Sean Patterson: British man’s murder in Jamaica was ‘contract killing’ by ‘unknown assailants’, police claim | UK News

The murder of a British tourist in Jamaica was a “contract killing” by “unknown assailants”, police in the country have claimed.

Sean Patterson from West London was found in a “pool of blood” with gunshot wounds to his upper body and head at around midday on 2 January.

Officers made the grim discovery near the pool of the 33-year-old’s holiday accommodation in Bogue Hill, St James, where he had been staying with another man, who was also from London.

“Our investigation so far has theorised that the murder was a contract killing that emanated from Britain,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Fitz Bailey said in a video statement on Wednesday.

He added Mr Patterson had arrived in Jamaica on 29 December and spent several days at an apartment before checking into the villa on Bogue Hill on New Year’s Day.

Later that day, Mr Patterson, and the man staying with him, met a third person from Kingston, and all three of them stayed at the guest house in separate rooms.

It was around noon the following day that Mr Patterson and the Jamaican man went to the villa’s pool deck, and a “lone man dressed in a black hooded sweatshirt” was seen firing shots, Mr Bailey said.

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“(The Kingston man) reported that his back was turned to (Mr) Patterson when he heard several loud explosions (which) sounded like gunshots,” he added.

“He reported that he looked around and saw a lone man dressed in a black hooded sweatshirt with a handgun shooting (Mr) Patterson.”

The witness reportedly fled and hid in bushes.

Sean Patterson died after being shot while in Jamaica
Cleared Pic

‘Significant progress’ being made

The commissioner concluded by saying local authorities are working with their international partners, including police in the UK, and were making “significant progress” in the case.

In an interview with the Daily Mail, Mr Patterson’s mother, Lesley Wright, said her son had travelled to Jamaica to meet family, and it was his first time visiting the country.

The 63-year-old told the news outlet: “I’ve lost my baby. No mother should have to bury her child.

“We hope for justice and that my son’s killer is taken off the street where they can’t hurt anyone else and destroy another family.”

On Tuesday, a Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office spokesperson confirmed they were “supporting the family of a British man who died in Jamaica and are in contact with the local authorities”.

‘More people could die’, claim ex-staff at housing body criticised after Awaab Ishak’s death | UK News

Two former employees of the housing association that managed the flat in which mould killed Awaab Ishak have claimed more people could die as they accused it of having a “toxic and bullying culture”.

Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (RBH) controls more than 12,000 homes in the area.

Two years on from Awaab’s death, Sky News witnessed a number of properties on the Freehold Estate in Rochdale, where the boy and his family lived, with severe mould and damp.

Two ex-employees who resigned over the culture within RBH told Sky News that tenants are suffering because of the poor standard of accommodation.

Gareth Swarbrick, its chief executive, was sacked on Saturday, with the association’s board saying he had been removed with “immediate effect”.

An employee who worked at RBH for six years, Dave (not his real name), told Sky News: “The culture was horrible. It was bullying, toxic for the employees. It’s not fit for purpose at all. It’s meant to be run as a charity for the focus of the tenants [but] nothing could be further from the truth.”

When Awaab’s parents were complaining about the state of their mouldy and damp flat in 2017, Dave was working in the association’s call centre.

“All the staff were advised to tell anyone ringing up to just open up your trickle vents on your window – make sure you ventilate your property and put heating on and they would fob people off,” he said.

“The total disregard for the tenants and cost-cutting was so obvious and it’s really sad to be honest.”

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‘Awaab’s death must not be in vain’

‘Association is racist’

Awaab’s parents, who fled Sudan to seek asylum in the UK, claimed the housing association was racist.

Dave said he agrees with them. “In my view, yes [it is racist],” he said. “It’s sad to say but it is.”

RBH refuted his claim, telling Sky News: “We are not a racist organisation, but we accept that assumptions were wrongly made in Awaab’s case. We are taking swift action to review our current approach and changes we need to make.”

There is only one way to avoid another tragedy, Dave claimed. “I definitely think there’ll be more deaths due to the lack of repairs,” he said.

“I think the only way that tenants will be safe is if RBH is closed down and the council takes it back over.”

Another employee, who resigned this year, quit after she heard about how and why Awaab had died.

Julie (not her real name) claimed the management “covered it up” and did not tell staff what had happened.

She told Sky News: “I knew one day RBH would make headlines because of how bad it was getting. I just hoped it wasn’t through the death of someone, especially a tenant. Even worse, it was a little boy.”

Julie added: “It just wasn’t right what they were doing. They were saying one thing and doing another – and that wasn’t right for me morally.”

On the culture of RBH, Julie commented: “It was toxic and people were getting away with treating employees how they wanted to, especially ones that challenged decisions. They’d be disciplined. In the end it just put a fear factor through the organisation.”

Gareth Swarbrick is doorstepped
Former chief executive of RBH, Gareth Swarbrick, has been sacked

Awaab died in December 2020. A coroner’s inquest concluded this month that he lost his life because of prolonged exposure to mould and damp in the inadequate accommodation provided by Rochdale Boroughwide Housing.

This should be a defining moment for the social housing sector, the coroner said.

RBH told Sky News it was “disappointed that two former employees claimed there is a culture of bullying”, adding: “We are an employee and tenant-owned mutual organisation with a strong set of values at our core. Our culture is one of collaboration and mutuality.”

Head of Royal Navy orders investigation into ‘abhorrent’ claim of ‘sexual bullying’ in submarine service | UK News

The head of the Royal Navy has ordered an investigation into “abhorrent” claim of “sexual bullying” in the submarine service.

Admiral Sir Ben Key, the First Sea Lord, said sexual assault and harassment has no place in the Royal Navy and that anyone who is found culpable will be held accountable.

Responding to the allegations personally on Twitter, he said: “I am deeply disturbed to hear of allegations of inappropriate behaviour in the submarine service and I want to reassure our people, and anyone who is reading this, that any activity which falls short of the highest of standards the Royal Navy sets itself is totally unacceptable and not a true reflection of what service life should be.

“These allegations are abhorrent.

“Sexual assault and harassment has no place in the Royal Navy and will not be tolerated.

“I have directed my senior team to investigate these allegations thoroughly.

“Anyone who is found culpable will be held accountable for their actions regardless of their rank or status.”

Read more:
Most women in armed forces have faced bullying, harassment and discrimination, inquiry finds

The statement from the First Sea Lord comes The Daily Mail said submariners compiled a “crush depth rape list” in which women were ranked in the order they should be raped in a catastrophic event, and that women were frequently screamed at, called c**** and hit with clipboards and pens.

Speaking to the newspaper, former lieutenant Sophie Brook, 30, said: “The best thing I ever did was leave the Navy but I worry about the women I left behind. It was just a constant campaign of sexual bullying.”

She told the newspaper she loved the job, but said: “It’s just unfortunate the ‘old boys’ club’ makes it such a hostile and misogynistic place.”

The Mail said Ms Brook left the Navy when she was investigated for sharing sensitive information about her submarine’s movement in an email.

The newspaper said she resigned in January but was formally dismissed in June and handed a suspended prison sentence.

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The Ministry of Defence (MoD) says that, while most Royal Navy personnel enjoy rewarding careers, for some, predominantly women, their experience has been affected by inappropriate sexualised behaviour.

They say they accept that more needs to be done and that they are improving reporting mechanisms for sexual offences.

Earlier this year, the MoD announced a zero-tolerance policy to sexual offences aligning the Royal Navy, RAF, and Army under one approach.

Ukraine war: UK rejects Russian claim West is helping Ukraine escalate conflict | World News

Russian claims that Britain and its allies are planning to help Ukraine escalate the war have been rubbished by the defence secretary.

In a call with Ben Wallace, his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu alleged Ukraine was “planning actions facilitated by Western countries, including the UK” to “escalate the conflict in Ukraine“.

But in a short, straight-forward official statement after the call, the Ministry of Defence said: “The Defence Secretary refuted these claims.”

Russia's President Vladimir Putin and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu attend the opening of the Army 2022 International Military and Technical Forum in the Patriot Park outside Moscow, Russia, Monday, Aug. 15, 2022. Putin vowed to strengthen Russia's military cooperation with its allies. (Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin with his defence minister Sergei Shoigu. Pic: AP

It said both ministers had been “professional and respectful” during the call, but that Mr Wallace had “cautioned” Mr Shoigu against using such allegations as “a pretext for greater escalation”.

The exchange came after a second call in three days between Mr Shoigu and US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin.

It follows a similar conversation between Mr Shoigu and his French counterpart on Sunday, where the Russian warned the situation in Ukraine was rapidly deteriorating and trending towards “uncontrolled escalation”.

He told Sebastien Lecornu, the French defence minister, that Moscow had concerns Ukraine could use a “dirty bomb” in the conflict.

Read more:
‘Massive new strike’ targets energy grid as 1.5 million Ukrainians left without power

Some Russian nationalists have blamed Mr Shoigu for Moscow’s setbacks since the 24 February invasion and most recently for Ukraine’s rapid gains in the northeastern Kharkiv region, which saw several thousands of square kilometres of territory regained from Russian takeover.

In his call on Sunday, Mr Wallace also reiterated UK and wider international support for Ukraine and a desire to de-escalate the conflict.

“It is for Ukraine and Russia to seek resolution to the war and the UK stands ready to assist,” his statement added.

UK ticket-holder stakes claim for biggest ever £195m jackpot in EuroMillions draw | UK News

A UK ticket-holder has staked a claim for the biggest ever £195m jackpot after Tuesday’s EuroMillions draw, Camelot said.

The £195,707,000 jackpot reached its cap after no one scooped the top prize in Friday night’s draw.

The claim will undergo a series of checks to ensure its validity before the windfall is paid.

Camelot said no information will be released on whether the claimant is an individual or a syndicate winner, or where the ticket was purchased unless the ticket-holder decides to go public.

Andy Carter, Camelot’s senior winners’ adviser at the National Lottery, said: “This is absolutely incredible news.”

The winning numbers were 06, 23, 37, 40, 41 and the Lucky Stars were 02 and 12.

Only 15 people in the UK have ever won more than £100m, putting the latest winners in elite company.

What can you buy for £195.7m?

Unsurprisingly, £195.7m goes a long way.

Despite a sharp rise in property prices this year, the winnings will still net a respectable 696 houses, based on the latest average.

Or how about a private jet?

This one lucky winner will be able to take three friends flying in style – all in separate aircraft with four Gulfstream G550 planes.

The massive sum would also buy 23 Pisces-VI Submarines, Southampton Football Club or a townhouse in London’s Mayfair, complete with a steam room and plunge pool, cinema room and fully-equipped chef’s kitchen.

It also means they would be richer than Adele (worth £150m).

Tuesday’s lucky ticketholder will also surpass previous record-winners Joe and Jess Thwaite, a couple from Gloucester, who revealed their identities after winning £184m on the EuroMillions back in May.