'Unprecedented' - Pro-Remain parties agree not to contest each other in 60 seats

PUBLISHED: 09:23 07 November 2019 | UPDATED: 09:38 07 November 2019

Heidi Allen speaks to Brexit protesters outside the Houses of Parliament in Westminster, London. Photo: Aaron Chown / PA

Heidi Allen speaks to Brexit protesters outside the Houses of Parliament in Westminster, London. Photo: Aaron Chown / PA

PA Wire/PA Images

The major Pro-Remain parties in England and Wales have entered a pact which will mean pro-EU candidates will not run against each other in 60 constituencies.

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Liberal Democrats, the Green Party and Plaid Cymru will announce the constituencies where certain parties will not be offering candidates at 10am on Thursday.

It is an 'unprecedented' cross-party bid to ensure voters only have one remain candidate in the constituencies, according to the chair of Unite to Remain Heidi Allen, who brokered the deal.

Allen said: "We are putting party politics aside in the interest of our country and have cemented a cross-party arrangement whereby Remain voting parties in England and Wales are working together to back one Remain candidate.

"With a single Remain candidate in each of these seats we can deliver a greater number of MPs into parliament. This is our opportunity to tip the balance of power away from the two largest parties and into a progressive Remain Alliance.

"The number of seats achieved, and the scope of what we're seeking to achieve, is unprecedented in modern British political history. Together, we can Unite to Remain."

The pact follows an agreement earlier this year which saw the Lib Dems take a seat from the Conservatives after the other two parties stood aside.

In the Isle of Wight and Brighton Pavilion, the Greens will be given a free run, while in the constituencies of Richmond Park and Cheltenham, the Lib Dems will be unopposed by other Remain-backing parties.

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson said: "We are delighted that an agreement has been reached. This is a significant moment for all people who want to support remain candidates across the country.

"People are tired of the old two parties. They want a new way of doing politics. Something that creates the politics of hope. We can only build that brighter future if we are prepared to work alongside others."

Adam Price, the leader of Plaid Cymru, said: "The single most important thing in this election is that we return as many pro-Remain MPs back in Parliament as possible."

Jonathan Bartley, co-leader of the Green Party, said: "Remain parties must be the winners of this election. So, we can have a future that protects our environment and workers' rights."

Labour are not included in the pact as, according to chair Heidi Allen, they are "not a Remain party unequivocally."

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