Friday, 22 November, 2019

EU nations agree to Brexit extension until January 31

GBP  USD Boris Johnson proposes holding British election on Dec. 12 to help resolve Brexit
Travis Berry | 28 October, 2019, 16:14

Montchalin said "the prime minister can pick up his phone and call Brussels to say: "I stop everything".

The Scottish National Party and Lib Dems have joined forces to attempt to force a general election in early December, but on a different timetable from that wanted by Boris Johnson and without any further push to see Johnson's Brexit deal approved by MPs.

Here is a guide to the latest decisions and the thinking behind them.

The bloc's leaders have agreed in principle to a delay but have yet to decide for how long. If no issues are raised, the decision will take effect.

The "flextension" is seen as a compromise.

The source close to Macron stressed that the third Brexit delay would come with conditions, including a refusal to renegotiate the divorce agreement and giving a green light to other European Union countries to meet without Britain to discuss the bloc's future.

Macron has previously managed to sway the bloc's extension decisions, meaning options range from two weeks to the three months - to January 31, 2020 - requested by Johnson, or longer should it be clear that Britain is headed for an election.

More than three years after Britons voted 52-48 per cent for Brexit in a 2016 referendum, the country and parliament remains deeply divided.

British MPs vote on Monday on the prime minister's proposal for a general election on December 12.

It will be his third attempt at getting support for the United Kingdom to go to the polls.

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Mr Johnson wants a December 12 election, but looks unlikely to get the required support from two thirds of MPs.

The leaked document, said to be circulating among EU member states, says the United Kingdom can leave the Union sooner if a Brexit deal is ratified.

Members of Johnson's government dismissed the SNP-Lib Dem idea as a "gimmick" and a "stunt".

But he has yet to persuade skeptical British MPs to ratify the accord, raising the specter of a chaotic "no-deal" Brexit and severe economic disruption in the United Kingdom.

Britain appeared to move a step closer Sunday to holding an early election in December, after two opposition parties backed the idea - but only if European Union leaders delay Brexit until January. They need a brand new ballot on December 9.

Unlike the government plan, the Demo-SNP bill a simple majority to pass.

The granting of an extension eliminates the possibility of a no-deal Brexit in the short term. A vote is due in parliament later on Monday.

The Liberal Democrats have pointed out that the earlier election date gives students, registered to vote in their university towns, the chance to vote before they leave for the Christmas holidays.

He says, "It's time to give the British public the final say on Brexit".

"The conditions of the extension were reinforced and clarified, namely the non-negotiable nature of the Withdrawal Agreement and the possibility of conducting meetings about European business among the EU 27 alone without the United Kingdom to prepare for the future". "That is why you can have a general election and you have another general election in four years' time", Lammy argued.

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