(EN) UK government faces showdown in parliament as rebel MPs push ahead with plan to stop no-deal Brexit


UK government faces showdown in parliament as rebel MPs push ahead with plan to stop no-deal Brexit

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson faces a showdown in parliament after warning MPs that he would seek a snap election if they tied his hands on Brexit.

Johnson has promised to take the UK out of the EU with or without a deal on October 31.

With 58 days left before that deadline, an alliance of opposition lawmakers are plotting with rebels in Johnson’s ruling Conservative Party to force him to delay Brexit for three months.

However, Johnson is opposed to delaying the exit date.

“I want everybody to know there are no circumstances in which I will ask Brussels to delay: we are leaving on 31st October, no ifs or buts,” Johnson said in a hastily-organised statement at a lectern outside Number 10 Downing Street.

“We will not accept any attempt to go back on our promises,” Johnson added. “I don’t want an election. You don’t want an election. Let’s get on with the people’s agenda.”

On Tuesday, the alliance of opposition MPs will use parliament’s first day back from summer break to launch their attempt to block a no-deal Brexit.

Follow our live blog throughout the day for all updates on Johnson’s day in Parliament.

The group will put forward a vote on Tuesday on whether to seize control of the parliamentary agenda the following day to try to pass legislation that would force Johnson to seek a three-month delay to Brexit.

At a press briefing, a European Commission spokeswoman said their working assumption was that Brexit would take place on October 31.

Responding to how they felt about a no-deal Brexit, she said it was a “a very distinct possibility,” which is why there will be a final call on Wednesday for everyone to be prepared in case of no-deal Brexit.

“We continue to believe that the best scenario would be a Brexit on the basis of the negotiated Withdrawal Agreement,” she said.

What is being discussed is alternative arrangements to the Irish backstop, she said, adding that no alternative arrangements have been concluded yet.

The European Commission spokesperson said that things had “progressed” in the fact that there were now two meetings a week with UK’s Brexit negotiator David Frost.