A Home Office minister was criticised yesterday for failing to guarantee that the Government would block plans to harmonise European criminal justice policy.

In a Commons debate on a wide-ranging European Union policy document, Caroline Flint said the Government would be "robust" in defending British interests when EU leaders negotiated the plans.
She also stressed that the Government was opposed to some of the ideas in the EU's justice and home affairs work programme for the next five years. But, in a series of bad-tempered exchanges, she failed to satisfy the Tories, who demanded cast-iron assurances that the Government would veto the most controversial proposals.

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