British Prime Minister Boris Jonhson’s controversial plan to breach parts of the divorce treaty for Brexit faces a vote in the parliament on September 14. The House of Commons will debate the Internal Market Bill amid strong opposition from Labour as well as Conservative leaders. Johnson’s former Attorney General Geoffrey Cox told The Times that the government should keep the word of Queen even if the “consequences are unpalatable.”
The post-Brexit trade talks between the UK and the European Union has descended into acrimony after Johnson hinted at a willful violation of the divorce treaty. Johnson had said that a no-deal exit would be a “good outcome for the UK”, triggering strong reactions from the EU and leaders across party lines at home. Amid growing opposition, Johnson is set to face a huge challenge to allow a no-deal Brexit.
Former UK Prime Ministers Tony Blair and John Major blasted the British government over its intention to break the divorce treaty with the EU through the new bill. In a joint letter published by the Sunday Times, the two leaders urged the members of Parliament to boycott the bill, accusing the government of “embarrassing” the country.
“What is being proposed now is shocking,” the former political adversaries wrote.
Blair and Major said that the overt repudiation of the treaty strikes at the very heart of the withdrawal agreement. The duo added that there are ready mechanisms like negotiations and independent arbitration within the agreement to resolve the issues bu the government chose to ignore those options.
“Instead, it has thrown the withdrawal treaty into uncertainty and given the EU genuine reason to question whether Britain can be relied upon in any future trade agreements with the EU,” they wrote.
European Council President Charles Michel had earlier said that the Withdrawal Agreement was concluded and ratified by both sides and has to be applied in full. He added that breaking international law is not acceptable and does not create the confidence they need to build our future relationship.