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British parliament can block no deal Brexit, former finance minister says

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Britain's former finance minister, Philip Hammond, said on Wednesday he was confident that parliament could block a no-deal Brexit if unelected people around Prime Minister Boris Johnson tried to force such a disorderly outcome.

[LONDON] Britain's former finance minister, Philip Hammond, said on Wednesday he was confident that parliament could block a no-deal Brexit if unelected people around Prime Minister Boris Johnson tried to force such a disorderly outcome.

Mr Hammond said demands to remove the Irish border backstop were part of a wrecking strategy by unidentified advisers around Johnson that put the United Kingdom on an "inevitable" course towards a no-deal Brexit.

"To set the bar for negotiations so high that we inevitably leave without a deal would be a betrayal," Mr Hammond told BBC radio. He cast such a demand as "a wrecking tactic" by those who are "pulling the strings" around Mr Johnson in Downing Street.

Mr Hammond said any attempt to bypass parliament would propel the United Kingdom into a constitutional crisis.

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"He has to listen to parliament and parliament is clearly opposed to a no-deal exit," he said. "I am confident that parliament has the means to express that view." 

REUTERS