UK government survives trade revolt

UK lawmakers voted by 319 to 308 to remove an amendment to the Trade Bill which would have forced ministers to withdraw from trade deals with nations the UK High Court ruled guilty of mass killings. [EPA-EFE/JESSICA TAYLOR/UK PARLIAMENT]

Boris Johnson’s government narrowly avoided defeat to its Trade Bill following a rebellion by 33 Tory MPs on Tuesday.

UK lawmakers voted by 319 to 308 to remove an amendment to the Trade Bill which would have forced ministers to withdraw from trade deals with nations the UK High Court ruled guilty of mass killings.

The amendment, tabled in relation to China’s treatment of the Uighur people, was backed by ex-Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith, former cabinet ministers David Davis and Damian Green, and Tom Tugendhat, chair of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee. 

Having left the EU, the UK is hoping to strike a series of third-party trade pacts but lawmakers are keen to ensure that human rights protection is included in London’s trade agenda.

(Benjamin Fox | EURACTIV.com)

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