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  1. ITV Report

Michael Gove: Public can use general election to change Brexit deal

Michael Gove indicated that the Brexit deal could be changed. Credit: PA

British voters will be able to change elements of the Brexit deal they do not like at the next election, according to Michael Gove.

The public will be able to use it as an opportunity to voice opinions on controversial components of the deal such as the "divorce settlement" - which could cost the UK up to £39 billion.

Mr Gove's comments came after Theresa May secured a last-minute Brexit deal with the EU to move on to the next stage of negotiations, trade talks.

The UK struck a deal with Brussels on Friday after overcoming the thorny issue of the Irish border.

But writing in the Daily Telegraph on Saturday, the Environment Secretary maintained the British public still had the power to make any future government "diverge" from the deal.

Theresa May and Jean-Claude Juncker welcomed the deal. Credit: PA

News of the deal has received public backing from both wings of the Tory party.

But hard-line Brexiteers such as Nigel Farage have criticised Mrs May's government for agreeing to pay upward of £35 billion to Brussels.

An element of the deal allowing the ECJ a future role in overseeing EU citizens' rights in Britain for eight years after Brexit has also caused some consternation.

Writing in the paper, Mr Gove said: "The British people will be in control.

If the British people dislike the agreement that we have negotiated with the EU, the agreement will allow a future government to diverge."

Mr Gove said that after a transition period, the UK would have "full freedom to diverge from EU law on the single market and customs union."

A compromise on the Irish border issue has been agreed. Credit: PAA

His comments come after it emerged the Cabinet is set to finally discuss what the UK's post-Brexit "end state" relationship with the EU should be at a meeting on December 19.

Other elements of Friday's deal to worry hard Brexiteers include a compromise on the Irish border.

This stated that if no trade deal is reached, the UK as a whole will maintain "full alignment" with elements of the EU single market and customs union which support the economy of the island of Ireland and the Good Friday Agreement.

Following the announcement of the deal EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said that "sufficient progress" had been made in the first stage of talks.

In a joint press conference, Mrs May "welcomed" the move to trade negotiations.