The DUP will set up a “star chamber” of experts to help the party decide whether or not to back Rishi Sunak’s new Brexit deal for Northern Ireland.
Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, the DUP leader, denied that he was playing for time by setting up the eight strong panel, which includes Dame Arlene Foster, the former first minister and party leader turned GB News presenter.
The idea has echoes of a similar committee set up by the European Research Group of Tory Brexiteer backbenchers to evaluate the new Windsor Framework.
Sir Jeffrey said: “I have established a group to commence and undertake a wide consultation process within Northern Ireland, listening and taking views on the Framework document.”
He said in “broad terms” it was clear that “significant progress has been secured across a number of areas” in the new deal.
But he added there were “key issues of concern” and that there “can be no disguising the fact that in some sectors of our economy EU law remains applicable”.