EU lawyer gives UK green light to call the whole thing off
THE European Union’s top lawyer says that Britain can withdraw from Brexit at any time, giving Theresa May a fresh headache.
The Prime Minister is desperately fighting against the odds to push through the deal she agreed with EU leaders for Britain to leave in March.
She has claimed there is no stopping the process and if her deal fails then the UK will leave with no deal in place – something she claims will be “a disaster”.
But a gang of remainers took a challenge to the Court of Justice to give Britain the power to withdraw from Article 50 – the act that legally started the Brexit process – without the say so of the other EU members.
And the European Court of Justice’s Advocate General said yesterday that Britain has the right to withdraw its Brexit notice from the European Union unilaterally.
“Advocate General Campos Sanchez-Bordona proposes that the Court of Justice should declare Article 50 allows the unilateral revocation of the notification of the intention to withdraw from the EU,” the bloc’s top court said in a statement.
While the Advocate General’s opinions are not binding, the court tends to follow them in its final rulings.
The case was brought by a cross-party group of Scottish politicians and was heard by judges at the Luxembourg court last week.
Alyn Smith, one of those who brought the case, said: “This is a huge win for us, and a huge step forward from the highest court in the business, and confirms what we have been hoping for – that the UK can indeed change its mind on Brexit and revoke Article 50, unilaterally.
“We now have a road map of the Brexit shambles, a bright light has switched on above an ‘Exit’ sign and the false choice being offered to MPs at Westminster – that it is Mrs May’s disastrous deal or chaos – is shown for what it is, an abuse of Parliament.”
The ruling means that if MPs vote down May’s deal they could force through a vote to stop the Brexit process completely, even without a new referendum.
Best for Britain member Tulip Siddiq MP said: “This judgment makes it unthinkable that the Government will pursue a path of constitutional and economic chaos, or to suggest their deal is the only game in town.”
May’s plan to keep close ties with the EU after leaving has been criticised by Brexit supporters and opponents alike.
She now has the fight of her political life to secure parliament’s approval in a vote that will follow the debate on December 11.
Last night the BBC said it was scrapping plans to host a Brexit debate between Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn.
FIGHT OF HER LIFE: PM May