LONDON (Reuters) - 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.
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,” Hammond told BBC radio. He cast such a demand as “a wrecking tactic” by those who are “pulling the strings” around Johnson in Downing Street.
Hammond said any attempt to bypass parliament would propel the United Kingdom into a constitutional crisis.
“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.”
Reporting by James Davey, writing by Guy Faulconbridge