May calls on MPs to back Brexit deal in 'national interest'
British Prime Minister Theresa May has appealed to MPs in parliament to prioritise the national interest when they are asked to approve whatever Brexit deal she is able to agree with the European Union.
"We're working for that deal - when we come back with a deal, I would hope that everybody across this whole house will put the national interest first," Mrs May said yesterday when asked about the prospects of getting a deal approved by parliament.
Around 30 to 40 MPs from the Labour Party would be prepared to back a Brexit deal Mrs May is trying to strike with the EU, 'The Times' reported, citing unidentified politicians.
The EU's Brexit negotiators believe a divorce deal is "very close", diplomatic sources said last week, though it is unclear if Mrs May could get the deal approved by parliament.
Around 320 votes in the 650-seat parliament are needed to be certain of winning a vote.
Mrs May has 315 MPs and governs with a working majority of 13 thanks to a deal with the 10 MPs of the DUP. Tory rebels say 40 MPs could vote against her agreement.
'The Times' said a group of between 30 to 40 Labour MPs could defy their leader Jeremy Corbyn and vote for a deal.
In one scenario, Labour would initially vote down any deal to prove loyalty to the leadership, but if parliamentary deadlock remained the rebels would back any deal that prevented a chaotic departure, 'The Times' reported.
EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier called for "decisive progress" in time for a summit of all 28 EU nation leaders next week. The 27 EU states will get an update tomorrow.
Negotiations will continue through the weekend.