May to trig­ger pull­out ‘with­out house vote’

The Myanmar Times - - World -

PRIME Min­is­ter Theresa May wants to trig­ger Bri­tain’s with­drawal from the Euro­pean Union with­out a vote in par­lia­ment, a news­pa­per has claimed.

A source in her Down­ing Street of­fice said the Daily Tele­graph re­port was spec­u­la­tion but added that Ms May was “com­mit­ted to de­liv­er­ing on the ver­dict the pub­lic gave” in the June ref­er­en­dum, when 52 per­cent voted for Bri­tain to leave the EU.

Ms May’s gov­ern­ment al­ready faces a le­gal chal­lenge to pre­vent it be­gin­ning the process of leav­ing the EU with­out an act of par­lia­ment.

Lawyers from the Mish­con de Reya law firm are poised to chal­lenge the gov­ern­ment in the English High Court, ar­gu­ing that Ms May can­not trig­ger Ar­ti­cle 50 of the EU’s Lis­bon Treaty with­out a par­lia­men­tary de­bate and vote.

Most mem­bers of par­lia­ment’s lower House of Com­mons, in­clud­ing Ms May, cam­paigned for Bri­tain to re­main in the EU.

Once Ar­ti­cle 50 is trig­gered, it would start a two-year count­down to Bri­tain’s exit from the Euro­pean Union.

Ms May has said it will not be trig­gered this year, the gov­ern­ment need­ing time to shape Bri­tain’s exit ob­jec­tives first.

Mean­while Gus O’Don­nell, the for­mer head of the civil ser­vice, said Brexit was not in­evitable and Bri­tain could re­main a part of a changed EU.

“It very much de­pends what hap­pens to pub­lic opin­ion and whether the EU changes” be­fore Bri­tain is ready to leave, he told The Times news­pa­per.

“It might be that the broader, more loosely aligned group is some­thing that the UK is happy be­ing a mem­ber of.”

He told BBC Ra­dio that elec­tions in France and Ger­many next year meant “it is not even clear which lead­ers our prime min­is­ter will be ne­go­ti­at­ing with, so I don’t think there’s any great rush to do it”.

Book­mak­ers be­lieve there is a onein-eight chance of a sec­ond Brexit ref­er­en­dum be­fore the end of 2020.

The prime min­is­ter is due to host min­is­ters at her coun­try res­i­dence this week, de­mand­ing “ac­tion plans” from each de­part­ment about how they can make the most of Brexit.

Min­is­ters will “dis­cuss the next steps in the ne­go­ti­a­tions”, a gov­ern­ment source told the Tele­graph, be­fore the prime min­is­ter heads to China for a meet­ing of G20 world lead­ers. –

Photo: EPA

Theresa May is com­mit­ted to de­liv­er­ing on the Brexit ver­dict.

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