Saturday, 16 December 2017
Latest news
Main » Britain, EU in suspense

Britain, EU in suspense

18 June 2017

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May speaks outside 10 Downing Street after an attack on London Bridge and Borough Market left 7 people dead and dozens injured in London, Britain, June 4, 2017.

Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster has tweeted that discussions with British Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservative Party are "going well" and that she hopes for a conclusion soon.

The development comes after May sent her Chief Whip Gavin Williamson to Belfast for talks with the DUP after the election.

"People knew that we were abstentionist MPs, they have elected us to represent them but not to take our seats".

Michael Gove, a former leadership rival, who was appointed environment secretary after losing his post as justice secretary in May's cabinet reshuffle past year, said the PM is the ideal candidate to lead the country through Brexit.

More news: Celebrity reaction to the mistrial in Bill Cosby's trial

She told the influential 1922 Committee of backbench MPs that she had got the party into "this mess" by calling the snap election, but she would "get us out of it".

Ms Foster said: "We've had some very good discussions".

The deal May has brokered with the DUP leader Arlene Foster involves giving an economic boost to Northern Ireland, but agreeing to disagree on some social policy issues, including LGBT rights and same sex marriage.

Though Foster supported Brexit, she also might demand that May pursue a cushioned exit from the European Union, given her party's wish that a soft border remain between Northern Ireland and Ireland, an European Union member.

Even the idea of an alliance is complicated, however.

More news: Real Madrid in danger of losing Cristiano Ronaldo amid tax allegations

They have struggled for years with Irish Catholic nationalists, who want the British province to join a united Ireland.

Sinn Fein has also claimed that a Tory-DUP alliance could damage powersharing talks in Northern Ireland, which has been without an executive since March and without a first and deputy first minister since January.

In a statement, O'Neill said: "I will be making it very clear that any deal between the Tories and the DUP can not be allowed to undermine the Good Friday and subsequent agreements".

Downing Street said Cabinet ministers had discussed the Government's legislative programme when they met earlier but refused to be drawn on discussions about plans to deal with the DUP.

A failure to gain support from the Northern Irish party would risk the Queen's Speech being voted down next week, and Mr Corbyn has said Labour will be pushing hard for that outcome.

More news: Special counsel homes in on Jared Kushner's business dealings

The talks are being closely watched in European capitals as they could delay the expected start of Brexit negotiations next week, as well as change Britain's entire approach to its EU withdrawal. Michel Barnier warned that no progress had been made in the three months since May triggered Article 50, starting the process of leaving the union.