British Prime Minister Theresa May on Friday tried to persuade British lawmakers to back an EU divorce deal, seeking to build bridges after lashing out at lawmakers for their indecision on Brexit.
May wrote to all lawmakers to spell out the possible paths forward after EU leaders granted a short delay to Britain’s departure at this week’s EU summit.
However, the prime minister said that she would not hold a third vote on the divorce deal next week if sufficient numbers do not switch sides in the coming days.
May faces daunting odds to persuade lawmakers to support the plan — something they have already overwhelmingly rejected twice — by a new April 12 deadline agreed with the EU.
If May succeeds, Britain would depart on May 22 under the terms of the withdrawal agreement struck with Brussels last year.
However, if lawmakers cannot back the deal, then Britain can ask for another extension by April 12 or face a no-deal Brexit.
A further extension would require Britain to take part in European Parliament elections in May, despite having voted to leave the bloc three years ago.
In her letter, May said that she would only bring the divorce agreement before the British House of Commons again if it looked like there was sufficient support to pass the deal.
“If it appears that there is sufficient support and the speaker permits it, we can bring the deal back next week and if it is approved we can leave on May 22,” she wrote.
However, she said that if there was not sufficient support or the chamber rejected it, Britain could ask for another extension and take part in the European Parliament elections, adding: “I strongly believe that ... would be wrong.”
Brexit protesters were yesterday expected to march in London demanding a second referendum.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said that she would join.
“The EU’s decision to postpone things until at least April 12 has opened a window, and those of us who oppose Brexit must seize the chance it offers,” Sturgeon was quoted as saying by the Press Association.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the bloc’s leaders would need another summit with May to discuss how to proceed if lawmakers reject the deal again.
That prospect increased on Friday after Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party accused May of “failure” at the EU summit.
“The government has been far too willing to capitulate,” Nigel Dodds, the party’s leader in the British parliament, said in a statement, adding that “nothing has changed as far as the withdrawal agreement is concerned.”
EVOLVING SITUATION: Of the latest cases, 23 percent were found to be asymptomatic, but the coronavirus strain in Da Nang is more contagious, authorities said A COVID-19 outbreak that began in the Vietnamese city of Da Nang more than a week ago has spread to at least four city factories with a combined workforce of about 3,700, state media reported yesterday. Four cases were found at the plants in different industrial parks in the central city that collectively employ 77,000 people, the Lao Dong newspaper said. Vietnam, praised widely for its decisive measures to combat the novel coronavirus since it first appeared in late January, is battling new clusters of infection having gone for more than three months without detecting any domestic transmissions. Authorities yesterday reported one new
‘COVIDIOTS’: Politicians condemned the protest that came amid surging infections in the country, while a marcher said government-induced fear weakened the body Loudly chanting their opposition to masks and vaccines, thousands of people on Saturday gathered in Berlin to protest against COVID-19 restrictions before being dispersed by police. Police put turnout at about 20,000 — well below the 500,000 organizers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs. Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over the past few weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize the rally as irresponsible. “We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists, as they converged
A cat that went missing on a family holiday on the shores of Loch Lomond, Scotland, has been identified 12 years later. Tortoiseshell-and-white Georgie spent October half term in 2008 with her owners at the Rowardennan campsite, but vanished as they were due to return home to Greater Manchester, England. After a search of the site the Davies family departed without Georgie, hoping the three-year-old microchipped feline would be located by someone. Over the intervening 12 years, she remained close to the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park site, being fed and cared for by campsite staff and holidaymakers. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit and lockdown
Three Micronesian sailors stranded on a remote Pacific island have been found alive and well after a rescue team spotted their giant SOS message written into the sand on a beach. Australian and US military aircraft found the three men on tiny Pikelot island, nearly 200km west of where they had set off. Rescuers said that the men were “in good condition” with no significant injuries. The men had been missing for three days after their 7m skiff ran out of fuel and strayed off course. Authorities in the US territory of Guam raised the alarm on Saturday after the men failed to complete