House of Lords inflicts Brexit defeat on May's government

House of Lords inflicts Brexit defeat on May's government

Meanwhile, there is mounting pressure on the United Kingdom from another quarter as the EU's chief Brexit negotiator said that Britain and the European Union must reach an agreement on the key points of the Northern Ireland border issue by June.

The British government faced pressure over Brexit at home and overseas Monday, including a defeat in Parliament over who gets the final say on an exit deal with the European Union.

"That's not what anyone wants to see but we can't have a situation where the clearly expressed will of the people in the referendum is thwarted by effectively procedural devices that would keep us in the European Union indefinitely".

He said: "Even the House of Lords last night rejected on a vote having another referendum".

The support of the 19 rebel Conservative MPs is aimed to attract cross-party support in the House of Commons, a plan that would give pro-EU supporters the chance to vote against a Brexit deal that would damage the interests of the people and the nation without triggering a "no deal" outcome.

Ministers face a heavy defeat in the Lords today on a central plank of their Brexit strategy.

"I don't think there is a customs union that could ever be acceptable", he added, calling the possibility of some sort of union "null and void".

Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer
GETTYKeir Starmer confirmed the amendment was aimed at stopping a"no deal Brexit

The Government warned giving MPs a decisive final say on the terms of the Brexit deal would weaken the Prime Minister's hand in negotiations.

"It is absolutely right that Parliament is able to scrutinise the final deal, and that is why we have already committed to giving both Houses a vote on the final deal".

Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer urged the Prime Minister to accept the cross-party amendment, warning that there was "no majority in Parliament for a no-deal Brexit". Tory and Labour sources alike regard it as the most significant defeat to the Brexit Bill in the Lords.

The Prime Minister has always insisted that MPs and peers would be offered a choice between accepting an exit agreement or allowing Britain to leave the bloc without any deal.

"If Parliament votes down the Article 50 deal, then Parliament must decide what happens next".

Senior Tory backbencher Sarah Wollaston said Brexiteers wanted to "take back control" to the United Kingdom but "Parliament won't support a hard Brexit".

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