Revised Brexit deal doesn’t undermine backstop: Irish PM

Erika Holt
March 15, 2019

The assessments left May's deal hanging by a thread.

Mrs May has been told by Brexiteers that rejection of the Withdrawal Agreement is "inevitable" unless there are significant changes to the Northern Ireland backstop.

"The EU will want to know what use we mean to make of such an extension", she said.

May will on Tuesday put her Brexit divorce deal again before lawmakers after they overwhelmingly rejected it in January. May said: "This joint legal instrument has comparable legal weight to the withdrawal agreement".

"This regime is only temporary as we recognise that there are challenges associated with this approach, including the unmonitored flow of goods into the United Kingdom and the potential for exploitation of any new system", the government said in a statement.

Conservative lawmaker Nicky Morgan said Ms. Another Brexiteer, Owen Paterson, tweeted that Cox's opinion made it "brutally clear" that nothing had changed. Party policy has always been that leaving without a deal is preferable to leaving with a bad deal.

"Having studied the documents, I would be surprised if they are sufficient to enable the Attorney General to change the central plank of his December legal advice", Starmer said on Twitter. "The government's strategy is now in tatters".

She called for intensification in "planning for a no-deal crash with an imperative to ensure no return to a hard border protections of our agreements and safeguarding the rights of citizens".

Juncker said he recommended the deal to the EU Council, which represents member states, and that Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar was prepared to back the changes on the backstop. "There is no alternative".

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The changes address the most contentious part of the divorce deal she agreed in November - the insurance policy aimed at avoiding controls on the sensitive border between the British province of Northern Ireland and European Union member Ireland.

Brexit supporting lawmakers are anxious about the backstop potentialling binding Britain to European Union regulations but May wants to reassure that would only apply temporarily.

The EU, meanwhile, is frustrated at what it sees as the inability of Britain's weak and divided government to lay out a clear vision for Brexit - and because May is seeking changes to an agreement she helped negotiate. The two sides also agreed to continue working on technology that would do away with the need for border checks. However, the text of the 585-page withdrawal agreement remained unchanged.

With Theresa May likely to be humiliated again seeking further concessions in Strasbourg today and in tomorrow's vote, it appears city institutions have been voting with their feet, moving operations overseas.

"I have got to say that if you look at what the prime minister has said so far it seems to fall short of what she, herself, had promised".

"The choice is this deal or Brexit might not happen at all", he said.

If she loses that vote, she has said lawmakers will get a vote on Wednesday on whether to leave without a deal and, if they reject that, then a vote on whether to ask for a limited delay to Brexit.

Residents, businesses and politicians across Britain and the bloc were bracing for a chaotic Brexit after British lawmakers rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit agreement for a second time by a decisive 391-242 vote on Tuesday. Steve Barclay, the Brexit secretary, is due to update MPs on the latest progress this evening.

Delaying Brexit would need the approval from all 27 remaining European Union countries.

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