Jeremy Corbyn has refused to say that Brexit will definitely take place after Labour opened the door to a new referendum that could keep the UK in the EU.
On the eve of his speech to the Labour conference in Liverpool, Mr Corbyn said his MPs would be ordered to vote against any Brexit deal that fails to meet the party’s six tests.
That is now seen as a certainty since one of the tests is to maintain the “exact same benefits” as as EU membership.
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"We will challenge the Government's terms for Brexit if they don't meet our six tests,” Mr Corbyn said in broadcast interviews.
There was confusion over Labour’s stance on a second EU referendum after the shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer made an unscripted commitment in a speech that “nobody is ruling out Remain as an option” on the ballot paper.
It contracted earlier comments by Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell, and went against the strong opposition to staying in the EU from Unite general secretary Len McCluskey.
Mr Corbyn backed his Brexit spokesman, saying: "Those are the words of the motion that was supported by the National Executive and the shadow cabinet and that is what is being voted on in conference. I think it's going to be carried by a very large majority.
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"Keir put that in because it's what's there in the motion. We will challenge this Government. If they don't meet our six tests, we will vote against it, and then we will take it from there.
"The priority, though, isn't the arcane wording of motions, it's about jobs and living standards."
Asked if that meant Labour was no longer committed to enacting Brexit, Mr Corbyn added: "Our party is determined to protect people's jobs and living standards and ensure that trade relationship with the EU. The Tory Party is trying to do some sweetheart deal with Trump which would be very damaging to our economy."