Monday, October 21, 2019 | ePaper

Johnson faces fresh Tory rebellion over prospect of no-deal Brexit

  • Print


Boris Johnson was reportedly warned about the 'grave' risk of the return of direct rule in Northern Ireland

AP,  London :

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is facing a fresh rebellion in his cabinet, with a group of ministers poised to resign due to concerns that he is leading the country towards a no-deal Brexit.
The Times newspaper has reported that Culture Secretary Nicky Morgan, Northern Ireland Secretary Julian Smith, Justice Secretary Robert Buckland, Health Minister Matt Hancock and Attorney General Geoffrey Cox are all on a "resignation watch list".
An unnamed cabinet minister cited by the newspaper said that a "very large number" of Conservative members of parliament will quit if it comes to a no-deal Brexit.
The Times said that ministers had warned Mr Johnson in a cabinet meeting about the "grave" risk of the return of direct rule in Northern Ireland and raised concerns about Dominic Cummings, Mr Johnson's top adviser. "Cabinet will set the strategy, not unelected officials. If this is an attempt to do that then it will fail", the report quoted another cabinet minister as saying.
The newspaper has also reported that the European Union is ready to make a "major concession" on a Brexit deal by offering a mechanism for the Northern Ireland assembly to leave a new backstop after a number of years,  The new idea, as reported by the Times, would be a modified version of the consent principle.
Citing diplomatic sources close to the talks, the Times said European governments were prepared to "concede a unilateral revocation of the withdrawal treaty by Stormont after a period of time. The date of 2025 has been mooted, as long as both communities agree to it. A European source was quoted by the Times as saying: "A landing zone on consent could be a double majority within Stormont, to leave, not to continue with the arrangements after X years."
The media reports come as the European Union accused Britain of playing a "stupid blame game" over Brexit after a Downing Street source told Reuters a deal was essentially impossible because German Chancellor Angela Merkel had made unacceptable demands. No 10 sources claimed Ms Merkel had told Mr Johnson that Britain could not leave the EU unless it was prepared to leave Northern Ireland behind in a permanent customs union. No 10 sources claimed Ms Merkel had told Mr Johnson that Britain could not leave the EU unless it was prepared to leave Northern Ireland behind in a permanent customs union.

More News For this Category

Turkey, US agree on Syria ceasefire to force Kurdish fighters' withdrawal

Turkey, US agree on Syria ceasefire to force Kurdish fighters' withdrawal

AFP, Ankara :Turkey has agreed to suspend its Syria offensive for five days and will end the assault if Kurdish-led forces withdraw from a safe zone along the border, US

Metro stations burned, buses set on fire in Chiles's worst riots in years

Metro stations burned, buses set on fire in Chiles's worst riots in years

AFP, Santiago :Chileans angry over social and economic issues clashed with security forces for a second day Saturday despite a state of emergency declared to quell the worst violence in

Longest non-stop passenger flight arrives in Sydney

Longest non-stop passenger flight arrives in Sydney

The longest non-stop passenger flight touched down in Australia Sunday morning after more than 19 hours in the air, a milestone journey from New York that Qantas hopes to parlay

Indonesia's President kicks off fresh term after wave of crises

Indonesia's President kicks off fresh term after wave of crises

AFP, Jakarta :Indonesia's President Joko Widodo will kick off a fresh term Sunday, facing a wave of crises and with Jakarta under heavy security days after Islamist militants tried to

Hong Kong protesters defy police after activists attacked

Hong Kong protesters defy police after activists attacked

AFP, Hong Kong  :Large crowds of Hong Kongers defied a police ban and held an illegal march on Sunday, their numbers swollen by anger over the recent stabbing and beating

News In Brief

Niger floods force 23,000 from their homesAFP, NiameyFloods in southeast Niger have forced 23,000 people to flee their homes since early October, officials said Saturday, threatening a new humanitarian crisis

Some worries about nuclear weapons at Turkey base

Some worries about nuclear weapons at Turkey base

AP, Washington  :Frayed U.S. relations with Turkey over its incursion in Syria raise a sensitive question rarely discussed in public: Should the United States remove the nuclear bombs it has

Violence escalates in Barcelona after 500,000 separatists rally

Violence escalates in Barcelona after 500,000 separatists rally

AFP, Barcelona :Violent clashes escalated in Barcelona late Friday, as radical Catalan separatists hurled rocks and fireworks at police, who responded with teargas and rubber bullets, turning the city centre

Last Soviet leader Gorbachev urges Russia, US to hold nuclear talks

Last Soviet leader Gorbachev urges Russia, US to hold nuclear talks

Reuters, Moscow :Mikhail Gorbachev, the last Soviet leader, warned on Friday that the world was drifting into a dangerous era of militarised politics and appealed to Moscow and Washington to

Chile President declares state of emergency after violent protests

Chile President declares state of emergency after violent protests

AFP, Santiago :Chile's president declared a state of emergency in Santiago Friday night and gave the military responsibility for security after a day of violent protests over increases in the