British Parliament Voted for Controversial Part of Domestic BillPolitics | December 8, 2020, Tuesday // 10:30| views
British lawmakers have voted to reinstate a controversial section of a bill which could allow them to break international law after Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced he will travel to Brussels to break a deadlock in post-Brexit negotiations.
On Monday evening, 357 lawmakers voted in favour of putting an amendment back into its Internal Market Bill which would override a section of the Brexit divorce deal, known as the Withdrawal Agreement. A total of 268 lawmakers voted against it, giving the winning votes a majority of 89.
This means that the bill will now be sent back to Parliament's unelected house, the House of Lords.
The Internal Market Bill, a provisional law outlining trade deals within the four United Kingdom nations after the post-Brexit transition period runs out, angered European Union officials when it was published in September.
Hours before the vote, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Johnson said in a joint statement that no movement had been made in the ongoing differences on "critical issues" when discussing a trade deal - meaning a face to face meeting in Brussels will now happen in "the coming days."
A British spokesperson confirmed that Johnson would travel to Brussels to join the meeting. A commission spokesperson said it remained to be confirmed who else would attend.
Since last week, there have been an intensive few days of discussions over future trade negotiations between Britain and Brussels.
The bill outlined powers to make rules about state aid and customs procedures for trade from Northern Ireland to the rest of the UK, which would break the Withdrawal Agreement reached between London and the EU.
After chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier and his British counterpart, David Frost, called for a break in negotiations on Friday due to a lack of progress, von der Leyen and Johnson instructed them to continue their talks in Brussels.
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