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Law officer 'offers resignation' over Brexit bill Law officer 'offers resignation' over Brexit bill row
(32 minutes later)
The UK government's law officer for Scotland, Lord Keen, has offered his resignation to the prime minister.The UK government's law officer for Scotland, Lord Keen, has offered his resignation to the prime minister.
BBC Scotland understands that the advocate general has found it increasingly difficult to reconcile the government's plans to change the Brexit withdrawal agreement with the law. BBC Scotland understands the advocate general has found it difficult to reconcile plans to override the Brexit withdrawal agreement with the law.
Lord Keen's resignation has not yet been accepted by Downing Street.Lord Keen's resignation has not yet been accepted by Downing Street.
BBC Scotland chief political correspondent Glenn Campbell said there appeared to be an effort to persuade the law officer to remain in post. BBC Scotland chief political correspondent Glenn Campbell said there appeared to be an effort to persuade the law officer to remain in the post.
This breaking news story is being updated and more details will be published shortly. Please refresh the page for the fullest version. It comes amid an ongoing row over the UK government's Internal Markets Bill, which Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis told MPs could "break international law" by overriding the withdrawal agreement signed with the EU.
You can receive Breaking News on a smartphone or tablet via the BBC News App. You can also follow @BBCBreaking on Twitter to get the latest alerts. However, Lord Keen subsequently said in the House of Lords that his view was that "the bill does not of itself constitute a breach of international law or of the rule of law".
He argued at the time that Mr Lewis had "essentially answered the wrong question".
But the Northern Ireland secretary has hit back, saying that his statement was a "very straight answer" which was "absolutely in line" with legal advice.
BBC Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg said Lord Keen's resignation had been rumoured for days, and had ultimately happened "after Brandon Lewis contradicted him this morning".
Richard Keen had been the chairman of the Scottish Conservatives until being appointed as Advocate General in 2015 - when he was also made a life peer as Baron Keen of Elie.
The QC has represented the UK government in court in a number of high-profile cases, including over the prorogation of parliament in 2019 and the "Article 50" Brexit case in 2016-17.