Lawmaker from Northern Ireland's DUP to vote against new Brexit deal

Ian Paisley Jr arrives before new leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), Edwin Poots, news conference in Belfast, Northern Ireland, May 27, 2021. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne/File Photo

BELFAST (Reuters) - A member of the British parliament for Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party said he would vote against a central element of the government's deal with Brussels on post-Brexit trade rules and he expects his colleagues will do the same.

Parliament will on Wednesday debate the so-called "Stormont brake", a key part of an agreement that enables Britain to stop new European Union laws from applying to goods in Northern Ireland if so requested by a third of lawmakers in the province's devolved legislature.

"I am categorically voting against and I would be surprised if my colleagues do not join me," Ian Paisley Jr. told the Belfast News Letter newspaper on Monday.

While a vote on measures to implement the brake is likely to pass as the opposition Labour Party supports the overall agreement, the backing of the DUP is seen as crucial in British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's efforts to sell the deal to sceptical members of his own Conservative Party.

DUP leader Jeffrey Donaldson last week voiced his strongest concerns to date over the deal, saying his party was seeking changes from the British government, but he stopped short of promising to vote against the deal.

A spokesman for the DUP declined to comment on how the party planned to vote after the debate, which he said was being framed by the government as an overall endorsement of the deal, known as the Windsor Framework.

The framework, he said, "does not deal with some of the fundamental problems at the heart of our current difficulties".

"It is our current assessment that there remain key areas of concern which require further clarification, re-working and change as well as seeing further legal text," the spokesman said.

The BBC reported the party was due to meet on Monday to agree a position ahead of the vote. The DUP did not immediately respond to a request to confirm the meeting.

(Reporting by Conor Humphries and Amanda Ferguson, Editing by Kylie MacLellan)

Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

Next In World

Opportunity or risk as sport races ahead with AI?
How to keep your data safe despite web browser security flaws
Decrying 'witch hunt', Boris Johnson resigns from UK parliament
Four Colombian children found alive in jungle weeks after plane crash
The modern classics: Gaming consoles with retro charm
International criminal court opens office in Venezuela amid probe
Giving durability its due: How Zelda’s breakable weapons improve gameplay in Tears Of The Kingdom
Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom review Sky’s the limit
U.S. stocks close higher ahead of Fed monetary decision
China-Hungary trade promotion events underway in Budapest

Others Also Read