The European Union council has given Rishi Sunak’s Windsor Framework the green light after an agreement was made on 27th February.
Meanwhile, in the UK, a group of Brexit-backing Conservative MPs have labelled a key element of the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal “practically useless” as in-fighting over the agreement trundles on.
The analysis of the Stormont brake by the European Research Group (ERG) follows the verdict of a so-called “Star Chamber” of lawyers charged with considering the details of Rishi Sunak’s deal with the EU on post-Brexit arrangements in Northern Ireland.
But Conservative backbencher and ERG chairman Mark Francois declined to say how members will vote on the deal, saying that the group will meet again on Wednesday to discuss the matter before the vote in the Commons on the Stormont brake.
In a statement, Francois said: “The Star Chamber’s principal findings are: that EU law will still be supreme in Northern Ireland; the rights of its people under the 1800 Act of Union are not restored; the green lane is not really a green lane at all; the Stormont brake is practically useless; and the framework itself has no exit, other than through a highly complex legal process.”
The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has already said it will vote against the framework.
Any backbench rebellion is unlikely to put the fate of the UK-EU agreement in jeopardy, with Mr Sunak able to rely on the support of Labour and other parties in getting the deal passed.
Related: Brexit blow for Sunak as DUP say they will OPPOSE the Windsor Framework deal