Four UK parties bid to force May to publish Brexit legal advice: report

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May | Amilcar Orfali/Getty Images

Four UK parties bid to force May to publish Brexit legal advice: report

Government’s Northern Irish allies among those behind move, newspaper says.


12/2/18, 12:13 PM CET

Updated 12/2/18, 12:31 PM CET

Four major U.K. political parties will band together to try to force Prime Minister Theresa May to publish the government’s legal advice on the Brexit deal, the Sunday Telegraph reported.

The move could delay the crucial vote on the Brexit deal in the House of Commons and further undermine support for the agreement, whose prospects in parliament already look bleak.

Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), whose MPs prop up May’s minority Conservative government, will join Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the Scottish National Party (SNP) in sending a letter on Monday that will accuse the government of being in contempt of parliament over its refusal to release the full legal advice, according to the Sunday Telegraph.

The newspaper said it had seen a draft of the letter, which could delay the start of a 40-hour marathon debate over five days on the Brexit deal.

Keir Starmer, Labour’s shadow Brexit secretary, Nigel Dodds, the DUP’s leader in Westminster, Tom Brake, the Liberal Democrats’ Brexit spokesperson, and Stephen Gethins, the SNP’s Europe spokesperson, will sign the letter, the report said.

In an opinion piece in the Sunday Telegraph, Starmer wrote that ministers could trigger “a historic constitutional row that puts Parliament in direct conflict with the executive” if they do not release the full legal advice.

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