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European Union Withdrawal (No. 5) Bill: Stopping No Deal Brexit

A cross-party Bill was introduced to Parliament on Wednesday which would allow Parliament to block a no deal Brexit once and for all. It was drafted by my friend Yvette Cooper MP and the Conservative MP Oliver Letwin MP.

I spoke of how we needed to rebuild trust between each other, both in Parliament and across the country, so that we could try and find a solution to the Brexit mess we find ourselves in. Parliament has voted, as have I, time and time again to block a No Deal Brexit this Bill merely makes it a reality.

One MP intervened on my speech to say that the European Arrest Warrant wasn’t that important because he believed that one case undermined its purpose. This is utterly wrong. As a former Minister of State for Counter-Terrorism and Policing as well as a Direct Rule Minister for Northern Ireland I can tell you that any loss of access to these vital tools would undermine our security and safety.

The division was won by a single vote – 313 to 312 and has now meant that the Bill can proceed to the House of Lords.