Irish leader presses for extension rather than no-deal Brexit
Irish leader presses for extension rather than no-deal Brexit
UK govt docs reveal BoJo WILL ask EU for Brexit delay – court
06 October, 2019, 01:35
The prime minister accepted that he should ship a letter requesting a delay past the Halloween deadline if no deal is agreed with Parliament by October 19, Scotland's highest civil courtroom heard.
Edinburgh's Court of Session (Outer House) case was brought by pro-EU forces led by the Scottish National Party to establish whether the Scottish courts have the power to fine or even jail Johnson if he fails to abide by the Benn Act.
He has not explained the apparent contradiction in his comments and opponents say they believe he will seek some kind of legal escape route or try to pressure the European Union into refusing to agree to an extension request.
While the government has said it will comply with the rule of law, it has been ambiguous over the extent to which it will comply with the Benn act, saying only that it will look "closely" at the legislation.
The document was revealed by Aidan O'Neill QC, the lawyer acting for campaigners who want judges to issue an interdict, or injunction, forcing the PM to delay exit day if no agreement is signed off by 19 October. They state that Johnson accepts "he is subject to the public law principle that he can not frustrate its goal or the objective of its provisions".
"We need to explore in much more detail the customs proposals that are being put forward as it's very much the view of the Irish government and the people of Ireland, north and south, that there shouldn't be customs checkpoints or tariffs between north and south", he said.
Andrew Webster QC, representing the UK Authorities, mentioned the paperwork it has submitted to the courtroom are a "clear statement" as to what the Prime Minister will do.
Mr Cameron, who was speaking at the Cheltenham Literature Festival earlier today, said he thought there was a "good chance" of success for Mr Johnson's efforts to get a deal passed in Europe and through the Commons.
BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg said on Twitter that a senior source in Johnson's office had said they could still avoid any delay.
"There is no aim in discussing hypothetical scenarios all the blueprint by the Benn Act".
Each of the 27 other European Union nations would have to approve Britain's request before an extension could be granted.
A United Kingdom spokesman said: "We have made a significant offer this week".
The UK prime minister has until now insisted that his Tory government would obey the law, but has been less forthcoming as to how he can keep his promise of no further Brexit delays.
He suggested British politics would be "stuck" until Brexit is resolved, telling the festival: "If I can be perfectly frank about this and we can't get a deal and we can't all be stuck and I recognise my fair share of the responsibility for that fact we are stuck".
Mr Varadkar said that the European Union would agree to an extension "if there's a realistic prospect of a deal during that extension period".
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