United Kingdom says Brexit defeat in parliament ‘a hiccup’

Benjamin Butterworth     2 days Saturday February 16th 2019   

						Female MPs forced to move home and hire bodyguards	

Benjamin Butterworth 2 days Saturday February 16th 2019 Female MPs forced to move home and hire bodyguards Politics

Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay, meanwhile, continues a series of talks with the EU's chief negotiator, Michel Barnier.

"If you can get to a place where the potential longevity of the backstop - the potential that the backstop lasts for ever - can be adequately dealt with, that's what we are all seeking to do", he said.

Brexit Minister Chris Heaton-Harris rejected that on Sunday, telling Sky News that there's a "huge amount" of activity from the government in trying to secure a deal, citing trips to Brussels by May and other senior ministers in coming days.

"What will it take for the PM to accept that we will not accept the "backstop" in its current form", Baker questioned, in reference to the back-up clause to prevent a hard border between European Union member-country Ireland and the United Kingdom post-Brexit - which remains the biggest hurdle in the path to an amicable Withdrawal Agreement.

The Prime Minister is trying to secure changes to the Irish backstop, an insurance policy created to avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic after Brexit, the BBC reported.

The Malthouse Compromise courts Brexit supporters with a pledge to ditch the unpopular backstop in favour of an alternative, and appeals to pro-EU Conservatives by pledging safeguards against the risk of disruption if no deal can be agreed with Brussels before March 29.

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On Tuesday, Cox is due to set out what changes would be required to eliminate that risk. He and Mr Barclay are then due to return to Brussels at mid-week to present these proposals to Mr Barnier.

"It is unbelievable really that the British government and the British parliament have allowed it to come to this", Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said in Dublin.

Preparatory work, supported by the Commission, is also underway in European Union member states to ensure that national customs infrastructure and logistics are ready to deal with a no-deal scenario, said the release.

"We are spending hundreds of millions of euros in Ireland preparing for a no-deal Brexit to try to protect Irish citizens", he added.

'That's what Parliament has been very clear that it wants, it will back this deal if we can do something about the backstop'. Of course we want a solution here.

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