Tuesday, 22 October, 2019

Momentum gathers behind British MPs' bid to stop no-deal Brexit

Almost half of voters in the 2016 referendum did not want Brexit Almost half of voters in the 2016 referendum did not want Brexit
Patty Aguilar | 30 January, 2019, 15:53

British PM Theresa May's "Plan B" which was revealed to a packed House of Commons on Monday is nothing but a revised version of the deal she had already agreed with the European Union and falls short of calling for a second referendum, extending "Article 50" withdrawal notice or ruling out a no-deal Brexit, angering some opposition MPs.

The Prime Minister, in her address, will focus on winning over Tory Brexiteers and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), a right-wing unionist party from Northern Ireland and ally of the Conservative government, by pressing for changes on the controversial Northern Ireland backstop.

Labour MP Rupa Huq, a supporter of the Best for Britain campaign, said: 'The Prime Minister can make the ultimate sacrifice if she wants but it won't make her bad Brexit deal any better.

And her official spokesman made clear that she is focusing on the possibility of changes to the backstop mechanism, created to ensure there is no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic if a broader trade deal can not be agreed.

She said: "All of us agree that as we leave the European Union, we must fully respect the Belfast Agreement and not allow the creation of a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland".

"It is not stating that the party supports a second referendum in any way and indeed if it was passed, the amendment, and it went to a vote on the specific issues, then that would be a decision for the party to take at the time".

In a step that could overturn centuries of constitutional convention, some MPs are trying to grab control of Brexit from the government in an attempt to prevent what they say would be an economically disastrous no-deal departure.

He replied, "If you like to push me and speculate on what might happen in a no-deal scenario in Ireland, I think it's pretty obvious, you will have a hard border".

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New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, on a visit to London, said on Monday that she is anxious about Britain leaving the European Union without a deal.

But all the Prime Minister could offer the House was more of what we've seen over the last few months.

One of the most prominent, with support from both opposition and Conservative lawmakers, would give May until February 26 to pass a deal, or see Brexit delayed as Parliament took charge.

She did not give details of what she might request from Brussels, but said she looked forward to exploring in more detail a proposal from Poland to put a five-year time limit on the backstop.

She said another referendum would strengthen the hand of those seeking to break up the United Kingdom and could damage social cohesion by undermining faith in democracy.

MPs are jostling to have their favoured outcome for Brexit debated in the House of Commons in what is shaping up to be a day of high drama on January 29.

"It would obviously be less favourable for Ireland than an indefinite backstop, but much more advantageous than no-deal Brexit", he told the Rzeczpospolita newspaper. At least nine Conservative MPs have also publicly said they will support it, suggesting that it has a good chance of passing. International Trade Secretary Liam Fox said "no deal is a possibility".

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