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Ministers say divorce deal would be ‘hugely harmful’ to peace process as MPs plot rebellion

Telegraph, 11 Sep 2020
Government ministers have insisted the Withdrawal Agreement would be “hugely harmful” to the peace process, as backbenchers plan to rebel over controversial new legislation.

Business Minister Nadhim Zahawi said that it was necessary to “disapply international agreements if they are harmful to your citizens” despite growing concern on the Conservative backbenches over breaching the treaty.

Tory rebels have tabled an amendment that would block the Government from overriding the Brexit divorce deal and it is understood that over 30 MPs could support it. 

Mr Zahawi said that “parliamentarians and the country will be able to scrutinise what we are saying” next week when MPs vote on the Internal Market Bill - read more here:

“If the Joint Committee can't come to an agreement by the end of this year, then there may be provisions within that that be hugely harmful to the peace process,” he added.

It comes yesterday’s emergency meeting between European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic and Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove ended in deadlock.

Brussels issued the Government a 20-day ultimatum to back down on his plans to alter the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement or face the collapse of trade talks and legal action.

However, Downing Street remained defiant and insisted it “could not and would not” withdraw the Internal Market Bill.

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