Britain to press ahead with Brexit treaty-breaking laws next week

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LONDON (Reuters) – Legislation that breaks Britain’s Brexit withdrawal treaty will be debated in parliament next week, House of Commons Leader Jacob Rees-Mogg said on Thursday, a move which could further undermine talks on a trade deal with the European Union.

Britain’s upper house of parliament voted last month to remove clauses in the Internal Market Bill which broke international law, but the government intends to reinstate them in the lower chamber on Monday.

The Internal Market Bill – designed to protect trade between the four nations of the United Kingdom – prompted fury in the EU when it was first introduced because it unpicked the terms of a divorce agreement both sides signed in January.

Brussels has launched legal action against Britain and Ireland has warned that breaking the treaty could destroy the trust needed to reach a trade deal.

A deal on trade with the EU could remove the need for the law-breaking clauses in the legislation and make the whole row go away, but negotiations are into their final days with little visible progress towards bridging large gaps in their positions.