Tuesday, 19 October 2021

May says UK can still leave EU with ‘good deal’


LONDON: The UK can still leave the EU with a “good deal”, Theresa May has insisted.

Warning MPs they faced “hard choices” after rejecting her deal for a second time, she said she would vote later to rule out a no-deal exit on 29 March.

Battling a sore throat at Prime Minister’s Questions, she said: “I may not have my own voice but I understand the voice of the country.”

But Jeremy Corbyn said the PM’s plan had been “decisively rejected” and she needed to change course.

After the Commons rejected Mrs May’s Brexit deal by 149 votes on Tuesday, the EU has warned the risk of a “disorderly” Brexit has never been higher.

The Commons rejected PM’s Brexit deal by 149 votes

Its chief negotiator Michel Barnier said the EU “cannot go any further” in trying to persuade MPs to back the agreed terms of exit and the UK had to break the impasse.

MPs will vote at 19.00 GMT on whether to block the UK from leaving the EU without an agreement later this month.

Wednesday’s vote only applies to the 29 March deadline and would not rule out the prospect of a no-deal exit later this year, if Parliament is ultimately unable to agree a way forward.

The Labour leader said the prime minister was in denial about her own deal’s lack of support after MPs rejected by a margin of 149 votes. He suggested his alternative plan to remain in a customs union was “the only show in town”.

“Isn’t it time she moved on from her red lines and faced the reality of the situation she has got herself, her party, this parliament and this country into?” he said.

But dismissing calls from Tory MPs to embrace a no-deal exit now, Mrs May said her deal remained the best way to honour the 2016 referendum result.

“I believe we have a good deal. No deal is better than a bad deal but I have been working for us to leave on 29 March and leave with a good deal.” The EU has urged the UK to take “responsibility” for its actions.

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