Evaluation of UK’s international obligations
The House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee has published a report on humanitarian intervention in Syria.
The Foreign Affairs Committee has also published a report on global Britain, considering human rights and the rule of law.
UK’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU
EU Commissioner Phil Hogan has warned Theresa May to ignore the ‘Three Stooges’ – Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg and Nigel Farage – whilst hammering out her Brexit deal. Meanwhile Boris Johnson has sparked fresh outrage from senior Tories by claiming the Prime Minister’s Chequers deal has left the UK strapped to a ‘suicide vest’, whilst former Brexit minister Steve Baker has stated that the Tories face a ‘catastrophic split’ unless Theresa May ditches her plan. However, plans of Tory Eurosceptics to publish an alternative blueprint to the Chequers plan have fallen through due to divisions.
The Financial Times reports that the EU is preparing to give Michel Barnier new instructions – a conciliatory move giving him a mandate to help close the deal with the UK. However, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab has reportedly clashed with Brussels’ top negotiator after it emerged that the UK has asked EU member states to hold direct talks on plans for a no-deal Brexit.
Downing Street is refusing to consider proposals to have EU officials stationed at British ports serving Ireland, intended as part of a solution to the problem of the Irish border after Brexit. Nonetheless, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, has said it is “realistic” for the UK and Brussels to strike a deal within the next six to eight weeks.
In The Times, Sir Stephen Wall has argued that postponing tough choices cuts the chances of a good Brexit deal.
Polling expert John Curtice has told Business Insider that fears of the negative impact of Brexit are pushing a growing chunk of Leave voters towards wanting to remain in the EU, and considered how young and old voters would vote now on The UK in a Changing Europe.
Pro-Brexit Tory MPs have reportedly openly discussed methods of ousting the prime minister at a private meeting, discussing the timing of a confidence vote.
Jean-Claude Juncker has ruled out the central plank of the Chequers proposals and dismissed the British government’s plans to build a rival to the EU’s Galileo satellite project as impossible, as he gave a downcast reading of the Brexit negotiations in his annual state of the union speech. However he welcomed Theresa May’s proposal for an ambitious future partnership whilst saying the EU would not accept the break-up of its single market, giving the Prime Minister hope for a Brexit solution.
For the LSE Brexit blog, Connor Gearty has written a post arguing that the way forward now is to back the hard Brexiteers, as only if they steer the UK into the chaotic Brexit will they and the criticisms which led to the vote be silenced.
The Government has published a second set of technical notes discussing potential implications of a no-deal Brexit. These show that UK nationals travelling through Europe could face significant hurdles in the event of a no-deal Brexit, including needing to carry multiple driving licences, renewing older passports and paying high mobile roaming charges. The Financial Times has analysed these technical notes, whilst Dominic Raab has argued that the UK is prepared if a no-deal scenario happens.