Government plans to override parts of the Brexit deal relating to Northern Ireland have passed their first hurdle in Parliament. By 295 votes to 221, MPs gave initial approval to a controversial bill, allowing ministers to scrap parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol. This was accomplished despite warnings that it breaches international law. The move also risks fresh tensions with the EU, which has taken legal action.
However, according to Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, there was no other option to "fix" problems the deal has created. The bill would allow ministers to change the part of 2019 deal that introduced post-Brexit checks on goods sent from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. Those were designed to avoid checks at the UK's border with the Republic of Ireland, but they are highly unpopular among unionists in Northern Ireland.
The bill began its journey through Parliament on Monday, with MPs voting to give it initial approval and allowing it to progress for further scrutiny.