British Prime Minister Theresa May, having arrived in Brussels, said that European leaders are determined to solve the problem of the only land border of the United Kingdom — between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. This border has become a stumbling block for the British Parliament.
May made this statement after a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte.
At the same time, members of the British Parliament from the Conservative party are discussing the possibility of a vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister.
Currently Theresa May is preparing to meet with officials in the leadership of the European Union — Donald Tusk and Jean-Claude Juncker. During this meeting, she will seek new European guarantees for temporary border control measures that could satisfy the deputies of the British Parliament.
European Council President Donald Tusk tweeted: “A long and frank discussion with Theresa May on the eve of the “Brexit” summit. It is clear that the EU-27 [27 EU countries] intend to help her. The question is how.”
Angela Merkel said that the previously reached agreement with Britain on the conditions of withdrawal from the EU can not be changed, but expressed the hope that the problem of the Irish border will be solved.
This is the so — called backstop mechanism, a temporary customs agreement designed to prevent the introduction of inspections of goods and people at the Irish border if a long-term solution to the problem cannot be found.
Opponents of Theresa May object to this mechanism due to the fact that it will lead to the emergence of different customs regimes in Northern Ireland and in other parts of the United Kingdom.
They also point out that the deal proposed by Theresa May suggests that Britain will not be able to get out of this mechanism without the consent of the EU.
Meanwhile, a number of members of Parliament from the Conservative party said that among them there is growing confidence that they will be able to gain enough votes to initiate a vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister.
For the commencement of the vote it is necessary that the so-called Committee 1922 of backbenchers from the Conservative party received 48 letters from current deputies calling for this.
In the case that 48 deputies would send such letters, the whole faction of conservatives in the House of Commons, composed of 315 members will be able to participate in a secret ballot on the question of confidence in the Prime Minister.
The Chairman of the “Committee 1922” sir Graham Brady does not comment on reports that he has already received the necessary 48 letters. However, as far as the BBC is aware, he would like to meet with Theresa May on Wednesday 12 December.
Representatives of Downing street say they have not heard of such a proposal. In addition, on Wednesday Theresa May visits Dublin, and on Thursday will participate in the summit of EU leaders in Brussels.
If may receives the support of a majority of deputies — that is 158 people — she will be able to continue to work as Prime Minister, and during the year her position can not be challenged. Otherwise, she will be forced to resign as leader of the party and will lose the right to be the head of government.
This will force the ruling Conservative party to look for a new leader, which may take several weeks.
Some commentators point out that, given the weakness of her political position, it will be difficult for Theresa May to hold the post of Prime Minister if more than 100 members of the Tory faction in Parliament vote against her.