21:10 GMT30 November 2020
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    On Monday, the first UK parliament session this year is expected to mark the start of the government reshuffle that the Prime Minister allegedly hopes to use to enhance her positions ahead of a new phase of the Brexit talks.

    UK’s Northern Ireland Minister James Brokenshire quit his post on Monday, citing poor health. The politician said he is expected to undergo surgery to remove a lung lesion.

    READ MORE: UK Government Reshuffle: 'Big Four' Ministers Will Reportedly Remain Unfazed

    Brokenshire, 50, said in a resignation letter to Theresa May that his health issues won’t allow him to focus on his duties. The minister has been in charge of settling a political crisis that has been raging in the semi-autonomous province of the UK for almost a year.

    Last January, Northern Ireland’s government collapsed after the Irish nationalist party Sinn Fein withdrew from talks with the pro-British Democratic Unionist Party over renewable energy issues. Brokenshire, who was appointed Minister last summer, has hosted a series of unsuccessful talks to help the sides find common ground in disputes and stabilize the situation in the region.

    The failure of the talks is pushing Northern Ireland closer towards direct rule from London. DUP leader Arlene Foster has demanded that the region is taken over by ministers in London if the conflict remains unsolved. 

    READ MORE: UK Prime Minister to Announce Government Reshuffle on Monday — Reports

    The region’s government was established in 1998 as a response to a decades-long conflict between the British authorities and Northern Ireland, which resulted in more than 3,000 casualties.


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