Boris Johnson slams Jeremy Corbyn's 'shameless Brexit U-turn and betrayal of millions' after Labour's decision to back a customs union

Jacob Jarvis
Boris Johnson took aim at Jeremy Corbyn in the Commons: PA

Boris Johnson blasted Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn over what he called a “shameless U-turn” with Labour’s decision to back a customs union amidst ongoing Brexit negotiations.

The dramatic statement came in a heated debate in the Commons on Monday, following Theresa May providing an update on negotiations between Britain and the European Union.

Mr Corbyn stated his belief that a "permanent customs union" should be sought and told the Prime Minister to "put the country before her party".

He said this would be a Brexit deal which could be supported by Parliament and the public.

Responding to this, former foreign secretary Mr Johnson said: "In deciding to remain in the customs union, [Mr Corbyn] is guilty of a shameless U-turn and a betrayal of millions of people who voted Leave."

The Conservative MP then asked Mrs May: "Will you confirm that the very latest deadline by which this country will take back control of our tariff schedules in Geneva and vary those tariffs independently of Brussels in order to do free trade deals will be December 2021?

"If that isn't the deadline, could she say when it is."

The Prime Minister told the Commons she agreed with Mr Johnson’s use of the term U-turn.

Mrs May replied: "You're absolutely right in pointing out the U-turn of [Mr Corbyn].

“They [the Labour party] cannot hold the position both they want to do trade deals around the rest of the world and also that they want to be part of a customs union."

Iain Duncan Smith also took aim at Mr Corbyn calling him a groundhog, in reference to the Labour leader’s statement that the statement felt like ‘groundhog day’.

He said: “Can I urge her [the Prime Minister] not to listen to the groundhog opposite, who doesn't have any interesting questions.”

Theresa May updated MPs in the Commons on Monday (PA)

Mr Corbyn made numerous combative statements of his own and said Mrs May's "blindfold Brexit" was a "bridge to nowhere".

He added: "The choice for this Parliament should never be her deal or no deal: if this Government cannot get a good deal for this country then it has to make way for those who can.

"The Prime Minister faces a simple and inescapable choice: be buffeted this way and that way by the chaos of her own party, or back a deal that can win the support of Parliament and the people of this country."