Former PM Theresa May expresses doubt over Boris Johnson’s plans for coronavirus and Brexit

Theresa May appears on the backbenches to question the government over coronavirus and Brexit. Photo

Theresa May appears on the backbenches to question the government over coronavirus and Brexit. Photograph: Parliament TV. - Credit: Archant

Former Tory prime minister Theresa May has appeared twice in the House of Commons to cast doubt on the government's economic strategy for Brexit and coronavirus.

Appearing at Prime Minister's Questions, May questioned Boris Johnson's Brexit [plans for keeping the UK safe after the transition period ends in December.

She said: '(He) has rightly been focusing on keeping people safe, but that task goes beyond Covid 19.

'So can (he) give me the reassurance that as from January 1 2021, the UK will have access to the quantity and quality of data it currently has though Prum (Convention), Passenger Name Records, ECRIS (European Criminal Records Information System) and SISII (Second generation Schengen Information System) none of which I believe should require the ECJ jurisdiction in the UK.'

But Johnson responded he could not offer assurances, but that he hoped the EU would 'see sense' and allow the UK to continue to enjoy the same benefits it currently receives.

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He said: 'That depends I'm afraid on the outcome of our negotiations as she knows well, but I am absolutely confident that our friends and partners will see sense and the great mutual benefit in continuing to collaborate in exactly the way that we do.'

Shortly after she criticised the government's proposals for a 14-day quarantine for overseas arrivals from next week.

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She cited concerns about the aviation industry, fearing Priti Patel's plan will have an impact on such key work.

'International air travel is necessary for trade,' she said after an urgent question was asked. 'Without it there is no global Britain. So instead of bringing in measures to close Britain off from the rest of the world, why is the government not taking a lead in developing an international aviation health screening standard, to save jobs and ensure that Britain is open for business?'

Theresa May has remained relatively quiet on the backbenches since standing down as prime minister, her appearance in the Commons could be seen as a sign of growing discontent from Tory MPs.

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