May gets EU legally binding guarantees for the Irish border

File AP

UNITED STATES (VOP TODAY NEWS) — British Prime Minister Theresa May has obtained from the European Union new legally binding guarantees on the question of the border on the island of Ireland, channel Sky News reported on Monday with reference to the head of the secretariat of the British Cabinet of Ministers David Lidington.

“We have achieved [making] legally binding changes to the agreement on withdrawal [from the European Union],” the channel quoted Lidington as saying. This statement was made on the eve of a fundamentally important re-vote on Brexit in the United Kingdom Parliament, scheduled for Tuesday, and following the results of the negotiations that May had on March 11 in Strasbourg with the EU leadership. Earlier, British lawmakers refused to accept this transaction without the guarantees mentioned.

Addressing the members of the House of Commons of the British Parliament, the head of the secretariat of the Cabinet urged them on Tuesday to support the deal with the EU in a situation where there is only 17 days left to Brexit. “Deputies have a choice – to vote for the deal or plunge the country into a political crisis. Now is the time to unite and support an improved deal,” the channel cites his words, including to members of their own Conservative Party.

Tories hold diametrically opposed views on how Brexit should take place. While some are in favor of maintaining the closest relations with the EU and after the divorce, scheduled for March 29, others believe that the exit according to a tough scenario, that is, without a deal at all, will only be beneficial for the UK.

According to Sky News, the government later plans to publish two documents resulting from negotiations with Brussels. The first of these is a joint legally binding document that complements the Brexit agreement between London and Brussels and concerns the timing of the controversial “backstop” mechanism, which has become the main stumbling block in the negotiations.

This agreement guarantees that the EU will not be able to indefinitely delay the backstop, and London will have the opportunity to terminate the mechanism with the help of an independent arbitrator. The joint statement specifies the details of the negotiation process, the purpose of which is to replace “backstop” with an alternative agreement on the Irish border until 2020.

The second document is a joint statement of the parties, which will be an annex to the political declaration approved at the November EU summit along with the draft agreement.

This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for VOP from different countries around the world – edited and published by VOP staff in our newsroom.

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