Tower block fire could delay Tory/DUP talks

14 Jun 17

Talks between the Democratic Unionist Party and the Conservatives could be postponed because of the tragic Grenfell Tower fire, which has claimed at least six lives.

The BBC reported that DUP sources said the deal to provide a confidence and supply arrangement was close to being done but that it would be “inappropriate” to make an announcement at this time.

A DUP source was reported to have said the two sides were finalising the agreement that would enable Theresa May to form a government with the support of 10 DUP MPs.

According to the BBC, diary commitments mean a final deal, which was expected to be finished today, could be delayed until next week.

PF approached the Conservative Party, the Cabinet Office and 10 Downing Street for comment but none were able to confirm the delay.

The DUP was also contacted by PF and had not responded by the time this story went live.

In a statement regarding the fire, a spokesman for 10 Downing Street, said: “The prime minister is deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life in Grenfell Tower and is being kept constantly updated on the situation.”

Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats have said that the party will elect a deputy leader again; the role was sidelined in the previous parliament.

LibDem leader Tim Farron said this was because in the last parliament none of the party’s eight MPs were women “and we didn’t feel it was right to elect a deputy in those circumstances”.

He said: “I wanted to revive the role as it gives the party another powerful voice and has helped give prominence to many of our notable MPs, including Ming Campbell, Simon Hughes and Vince Cable.

“Now a third of our parliamentary party is female and we have our most diverse group of MPs ever, I feel our MPs form a more representative group to elect a deputy leader.”

The party’s 12 MPs will elect the deputy on Tuesday 27 June.

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