UK Given Until Oct For Brexit Extension, But Not Before Lecturing PM May Not To Waste Time

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Apr 11 2019
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Theresa May, arguably one of the most incompetent British leaders the country has ever produced, has been given an additional six months to find the best possible solution to the Brexit deadlock. The new Brexit deadline will be on October 31, after the British Prime Minister begged and requested a further delay to the U.K.’s departure from the European Union.


After two years of Brexit negotiations, the U.K. was supposed to leave the EU on March 29. However, the weak leadership of May to convince her lawmakers to leave saw her government asked for a short delay to April 12 in order to get backing for an alternative Brexit strategy. So far, U.K. lawmakers have rejected May’s proposals three times.


That has forced Theresa May to go back to the EU and asked for a longer delay until June 30 in order to prevent the U.K. leaving the bloc without a deal. However, there’s a small catch. The extension would mean that the British government might need to take part in European Parliament elections in late May.

British Prime Minister Theresa May - Looking Down Humiliated

If British lawmakers don’t ratify a deal by May 22, the U.K. must participate in European Parliament elections scheduled for May 23-26. Failure to do so means the U.K. will leave the bloc on June 1. But if Theresa May can secure enough support from lawmakers to a Brexit deal, Britain still can leave earlier than the Oct 31’s extension.


At the same time of granting the extension, Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, lectured Theresa May not to waste the additional time that has been agreed. He said – “Please do not waste this time. This extension is as flexible as I expected and a little bit shorter than I expected, but it’s still enough to find the best possible solution.”


The generosity was granted because the EU also hopes that the extension would allow sufficient time for Britain to “revoke Article 50” and cancel Brexit altogether. In fact, Tusk had earlier suggested giving the country another 12 months to approve and ratify a deal on how the country would leave the EU. Clearly, the EU still hopes there would be a U-turn to the whole crisis.

Brexit - UK Abandon EU Sinking Ship

When grilled after the extension, Theresa May repeatedly avoided questions about her future as British prime minister, after having previously said she would not accept an extension beyond 30 June. She insisted that the UK “can still leave on May 22 and not hold those European parliamentary elections.”


As expected, she blames all the members of parliament who had voted against her for the public frustration over the failure to implement Brexit. Outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the latest extension to Oct. 31 allows the U.K. the best chance of an orderly exit from the EU. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, on the other hand, said he expects the latest extension to be the last one.


However, French President Emmanuel Macron wasn’t so forgiving and generous. He insisted that a delay beyond June 30 would undermine the European Union. Macron had sought to maintain the pressure on Britain in retaliation to threats from Brexiteers. Although U.K. can leave without a deal, it would create some havoc in the business and financial markets.

Brexit - Kid With British Flag On Face

The other option is to cancel Brexit, but that would require a change in the law in the U.K., something neither the government nor the main Britain opposition parties want to do at this point as it would be a political suicide. The referendum held on 23 June, 2016 saw voters who voted to “leave” won by 51.9% to 48.1%. England voted for Brexit – by 53.4% to 46.6%.


That means more than 17 million Britons had voted in favour of quitting the 28-member EU during the referendum, a huge vote bank that no politicians are willing to offend by cancelling Brexit. When British MPs rejected Prime Minister Theresa May’s EU divorce deal for a third time last month, thousands of flag-waving protesters gathered outside parliament – accusing MPs of betraying Brexit.


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