12/10/2018

DUP In War Of Words With Conservatives Over Brexit

Tensions are rising as a war of words develops between the DUP and the Conservative party over Brexit.

It comes after DUP MP Sammy Wilson warned that his party would withdraw it's support for the government if it does not approve of the Brexit deal.

Prime Minister Theresa May currently relies on support from the party for key votes that make up her majority in the House of Commons.

Mr Wilson was speaking after Conservatives debated whether or not they should challenge the DUP's stance on Brexit and the Irish Border. He said if the deal crosses his party's red line "there'll be consequences".

DUP leader Arlene Foster also said the Prime Minister could not in "good conscience" accept the proposals that are currently on the table from the EU.

The DUP confirmed it's position on Wednesday by abstaining from an Agriculture Bill vote, a move that Mr Wilson later said was "a warning to the Government".
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The East Antrim MP suggested the next step would be to vote down Theresa May's Budget later this month, a move that could collapse her administration.

Meanwhile, Sinn Fein Vice President Michelle O'Neill has accused the DUP of being "reckless" in it's actions.

"There is an onus on the Irish Government and the EU to ensure the commitments made by the British Government to a legal binding backstop are met as the negotiations reach a critical point," Mrs O'Neill said.

Alliance MLA Paula Bradshaw said the DUP is "badly letting down Northern Ireland" with it's threat to withdraw support for the Budget.

"The DUP are on the wrong page on this. This budget will have the next tranche of 'confidence and supply' money, including considerable funds going to health and education," she added.

Stephen Farry, another MLA for the Alliance Party also expressed his disapproval. He said: "It is hugely irresponsible for Arlene Foster to dress this up as a constitutional crisis when it is patently not."

(JG)

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