May faces angry MPs with Brexit deal in limbo

Madiha Shakeel December 12, 2018

London: Prime Minister Theresa May faces an angry parliament Wednesday after delaying a key vote on her Brexit deal in a desperate move that leaves the agreement and her own future in limbo.

The British leader toured European capitals on Tuesday in an attempt to salvage the deal, after MPs savaged its provisions on the issue of the Irish border.

May said she wanted “assurances” from EU leaders that if Britain ever entered the so-called “backstop” arrangement for the border, this would only be “temporary”.

But she also said it was “the best deal available”, adding: “There’s no deal available that doesn’t have a backstop”.

She received sympathy from EU partners but firm rejections of any attempt to reopen the agreement, which was approved by EU leaders last month following tortuous negotiations.

“There is no room whatsoever for renegotiation but of course there is room, if used intelligently, to give further clarification,” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said ahead of talks with May on Tuesday.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said there was “no way to change” the deal after meeting May.

Meanwhile EU President Donald Tusk said bloc leaders wanted to help the prime minister but added: “The question is how”.

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2018

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