Ann Widdecombe and Owen Jones clash over Brexit deal
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Former Member of the European Parliament Ann Widdecombe has called the Brexit deal “lousy” in an “almost” agreement with Owen Jones. The debate came as the UK proposed plans to replace the existing Northern Ireland protocol with a new one in bid to allow goods to circulate more freely between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Ms Widdecombe dismissed suggestions from Mr Jones claiming the clause on the status of Northern Ireland had to be included in any Brexit deal to protect the Good Friday Agreement.
Speaking to Jeremy Vine on Five, Ann Widdecombe said: “The Good Friday Agreement was never in any danger.
“You didn’t need to have an absolutely hard border.
“That was what we said all along.”
She added: “I do agree with Owen that it’s a lousy deal, but I said so at the time.”
Jeremy Vine chipped in: “It’s interesting that I think you both agree on something here.”
Owen Jones said: “I think Brexit should be made to work.
“But making it work must be reconciled with securing and protecting the Northern Ireland peace.”
Jeremy Vine said: “It may be not my place to say but it might not have helped when Boris Johnson said before we signed up, ‘if anybody gives you a piece of paper, and any sort of custom check, throw it in the bin’.
“And people thought there wouldn’t be checks, and that was Boris misleading.”
The protocol was introduced to help prevent checks along the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland at the start of the year
On Tuesday, Brexit minister David Frost called on the EU to revise the Brexit agreement as he demanded a new Northern Ireland protocol.
The EU is expected to outline its response to the UK on Wednesday.
However, Adam Fleming has warned of “tension” between the UK and the UK over the next few weeks.
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