Northern Ireland

Brexit: Lords back move to stop Parliament suspension

EU flag at Parliament Image copyright Getty Images

A bid by MPs to stop a new Prime Minister suspending Parliament to force through a no-deal Brexit has been supported in the House of Lords.

The government had asked peers to reject the move included in an amendment to the Northern Ireland Executive Formation Bill.

But after a 30 minute debate the government motion was rejected by a majority of 114 votes.

The bill will now return to the House of Commons later this week.

This amendment will restrict the Prime Minister from suspending parliament - proroguing - to introduce a no deal Brexit before the deadline of October 31st.

Image copyright HoL

It requires that parliament be recalled to debate political progress in Northern Ireland between October and December.

Northern Ireland office Minister Lord Duncan said this bill was "primarily about restoring talks in Northern Ireland" and not to "manufacture debates on Brexit".

He described the move by MP's an "unfortunate hijacking" of a bill which was needed to try and restore devolution to Northern Ireland.

Ulster Unionist peer Lord Empey also criticised the move.

He said it will make the formation of the "Executive even more difficult". He added the original bill has been "distorted."

The Northern Ireland Executive formation bill will now proceed to royal assent.