Britain clinches Brexit deal

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Britain and European Union negotiating teams have struck a last-minute Brexit deal ahead of an EU summit in Brussels.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in a tweet, “we’ve got a great new deal that takes back control.”

The two sides have been working on the legal text of a deal, but it will still need the approval of both the UK and European parliaments.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he would recommend that leaders of the other 27 member states approve the deal.

“I believe it is high time to complete the divorce process and move on, as swiftly as possible, to the negotiation on the European Union’s future partnership with the United Kingdom,” Juncker said in an attached letter.

The EU demands, and Johnson agrees, Northern Ireland must maintain an open border with the Republic of Ireland, as written in the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement that ended decades of sectarian bloodshed.

However, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which backs Johnson’s government, has cast doubt on its success, saying they still cannot support it.

The Northern Irish party earlier released a statement saying they could not back proposals “as things stand”, and – after the PM’s announcement – said their statement “still stands”.

Johnson is hoping to get approval for the agreement in a vote at an extraordinary session of the British parliament on Saturday, to pave the way for an orderly departure on Oct. 31.

 




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