March 12, 2019 / 12:24 PM / 11 days ago

UK Brexit secretary: legal advice does not show failure of May's deal

Britain's Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union Stephen Barclay is seen outside Downing Street in London, Britain, March 12, 2019. REUTERS/Simon Dawson

LONDON (Reuters) - British Brexit secretary Stephen Barclay rejected claims on Tuesday that new legal advice on a revised divorce deal with the European Union showed Prime Minister Theresa May had failed to achieve meaningful concessions.

Earlier, Attorney General Geoffrey Cox said the new deal had not given Britain the legal means of exiting the so-called Northern Irish backstop arrangement unilaterally if “intractable differences” arose.

Asked if this conclusion was “pretty terminal” for May’s deal, Barclay told members of parliament: “I don’t accept that, because one has got to look at this as a package, not in isolation.”

“It does allow for this issue of bad faith and the UK being trapped.”

Reporting by William Schomberg, writing by Andy Bruce; editing by Stephen Addison

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