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Labour FINALLY takes a view on Brexit: David Lammy says ‘we will NOT go into the next election saying we will re-join EU’… risking further battles between Remainers and Leavers in the party
- Shadow Foreign Secretary said ‘we have to honour’ British people’s decision
- He insisted Labour would not look to re-enter single market in election pledges
- But he did say he wanted to ‘improve’ the deal Boris Johnson struck with the EU
Labour minister David Lammy has finally announced the party’s stance on Brexit, insisting it will not going into the next election pledging to re-join the European Union.
The Shadow Foreign Secretary insists Labour does not want to scrap Boris Johnson’s deal with the EU, but rather make limited changes to try and ‘improve’ it.
He claimed the party would not look to re-enter the single market, bringing about the return of free trade and free movement of people.
Mr Lammy told an event hosted by the UK In A Changing Europe think tank there ‘cannot be a rehash of arguments’ made in Remainer constituencies like his in north London.
‘The British people have made a decision and we have to honour it,’ he added.
However, the stance is likely to risk further internal battles between those who voted to stay in the bloc and those who voted to leave.
Labour minister David Lammy has finally announced the party’s stance on Brexit, insisting it will not going into the next election pledging to re-join the European Union
The Shadow Foreign Secretary insists Labour does not want to scrap Boris Johnson’s deal with the EU, but rather make limited changes to try and ‘improve’ it
At the same event, ex-Brexit minister Lord Frost admitted it might never be clear whether Britain’s decision to leave the EU was an economic success or failure.
Speaking on the sixth anniversary of the referendum yesterday, the former Cabinet minister stressed there was ‘so much else is going on’ that it made it ‘extremely difficult’ to judge the impact of Brexit.
But the Tory peer insisted there was ‘no cause for regrets’ so far over Britain quitting the EU.
He also put pressure on the Prime Minister to not go ‘backwards’ on Brexit but instead focus on ‘completing the process’.
Lord Frost served as Britain’s chief negotiator – and struck the Brexit deal with the EU – until December last year, when he quit the Government due to his worries about the direction of Boris Johnson’s administration.
Meanwhile, Mr Lammy said LAbour would look to secure ‘practical solutions to reduce any checks to their absolute minimum’ by pursuing an agreement on food and agricultural standards, sharing trade data and using a ‘risk based approach’ for goods entering Northern Ireland from Great Britain.
‘Both the EU and the UK would have to compromise to make this happen,’ he said.
‘But the last Labour government was able to broker the Good Friday Agreement.
‘We are confident that with trust and goodwill, we would be able to achieve it.’
At the same event, ex-Brexit minister Lord Frost admitted it might never be clear whether Britain’s decision to leave the EU was an economic success or failure
The Government has proposed a Bill to unilaterally change parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol, arguing this is the only solution after months of stalled negotiations.
But Mr Lammy attacked the Bill as ‘a charter for lawlessness’ that undermined international law and ‘risks emboldening dictators and authoritarian states around the world’.
He also accused the Government of being ‘stuck in a fever dream of 2016’ and ‘picking petty fights with our closest neighbours’ by introducing plans to tear up the Protocol.
He said: ‘The Government’s position is that the situation in Ukraine is so serious that their lawbreaking Prime Minister must remain in office, but apparently not serious enough to stop us starting a diplomatic fight with some of our closest allies.’