Lord Hain - Lords amendment "on its own not enough to avoid a hard border"

The House of Lords has voted by 309 to 242 in favour of an amendment to avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Commenting, Lord Hain, former Northern Ireland Secretary and a leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, said:

“The role of the House of Lords is to scrutinise legislation and, where necessary, to encourage the House of Commons to think again when they feel a mistake is being made. Tonight we have simply done our job.

“The Government’s half-baked plans on future customs arrangements risk rolling back years of progress on the island of Ireland, and threaten the re-emergence of a hard border. No Parliament in its right mind should let that happen. Tonight’s amendment, if also passed in the Commons, would be a step in the right direction.

“But on its own it would not be enough to avoid a hard border – that will ultimately depend on whether the Government change course and negotiate to stay in the Single Market and Customs Union.

“That’s why we need a People’s Vote, so that the 65 million people of this country, including those in Northern Ireland, can decide whether the Brexit deal is good enough for the country.”