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UK Brexit position 'more difficult' after Commons defeat, says Luxembourg PM

  • Theresa May narrowly lost a vote related to Brexit and the UK parliament's final say
  • The loss was made possible after members of her own party rebelled
  • The Luxembourg prime minister says Britain will now have less time to get good exit terms

Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel claimed Thursday that Britain's negotiating position with the rest of Europe has been weakened after Theresa May's defeat in the U.K. parliament.

May's Conservative government on Wednesday lost a tight vote on whether the House of Commons must get a vote on the final terms of the Brexit divorce deal with the European Union (EU).

The amendment means that May cannot guarantee fellow EU leaders that she will be able to implement the exit terms they agree on.

Bettel told CNBC on Thursday that the vote has reduced the likelihood that May would get a good deal for her country.

"Now, if after every decision she will need to go to Westminster to get a green light to continue discussion, (this) will make her time even shorter to negotiate in Brussels," he said.

"I fully believe that the agenda being decided, this just makes the British position more difficult because it will be difficult for the U.K. government."

Bettel said he fully supported May and she was "fully respected" among fellow leaders in Brussels.

May arrived at the EU summit in Brussels on Thursday afternoon and insisted that, despite the Commons defeat, her government was still "on course to deliver on Brexit."