Tory MPs pressure Boris Johnson not to extend coronavirus restrictions

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Conservative backbenchers are pressuring Boris Johnson not to extend coronavirus powers by another six months and are planing to rebel on the issue in a vote later this week.

The prime minister is expected to get approval from MPs on Thursday to extend the powers in the Coronavirus Act until October.

But a minority of his Tory colleagues object to the approach and say the speed and success of the vaccine programme means restrictions should be lifted faster.

Mark Harper, the chair of the Coronavirus Recovery Group (CRG) of MPs, questioned “draconian” powers and said “reasonable people” would wonder if the government had struck the right balance.

Meanwhile Steve Baker, a former minister and another member of the CRG, said the government should be held to account.

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