Parliament has acted in the best interests of the entire United Kingdom by rejecting Theresa May’s withdrawal deal, the Democratic Unionist leader has claimed.
In a bruising defeat for the Prime Minister, MPs voted down Mrs May’s Brexit plans by 432 to 202.
Now Arlene Foster has urged Mrs May to return to European Union leaders and renegotiate to secure a “better deal”.
The leader of the Democratic Unionists, which remain in a supply and confidence deal with the Conservative Party, has insisted Parliament has “acted in the best interests of the entire United Kingdom”.
“The House of Commons has sent an unmistakable message to the Prime Minister and the European Union that this deal is rejected,” Mrs Foster said.
“Mrs May will now be able to demonstrate to the Brussels’ negotiators that changes are required if any deal is to command the support of Parliament.
“We will work with the Government constructively to achieve a better deal.
“That is our focus.
“Whilst some may wish to use this defeat to boost their political ambitions, we will give the Government the space to set out a plan to secure a better deal.
“Reassurances, whether in the form of letters or warm words, will not be enough.
“The Prime Minister must now go back to the European Union and seek fundamental change to the Withdrawal Agreement.
“We want an orderly exit from the European Union with a sensible deal which works for Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom.”
Earlier, Mrs Foster described Tuesday night’s vote in the House of Commons as “historic but for the wrong reasons”.
She confirmed her party’s 10 MPs would vote against the withdrawal deal.