Brexit delayed once more, discussions will continue on Tuesday

An amendment to the Brexit deal has been passed so that the UK parliament will now have to discuss all the legislation implementing the Brexit agreement before a vote on the deal is taken

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Brexit has been delayed once again as the UK Parliament has decided to discuss every legislation outlining the particulars of a break from the EU before a vote on the fresh Brexit deal is taken.

UK political representatives spent many hours in debate in the British Parliament’s first Saturday session in 37 years.

The House debated the new Brexit deal that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson was able to obtain in Brussels in talks with EU negotiators.

Johnson had his work cut out for him after the Irish Democratic Unionist Party said they would not back his deal. He requires more than 320 parliamentary votes for the deal to pass.

However, such a vote will not be taking place as on Saturday an amendment to the deal was voted on in Parliament and passed, which has now withheld parliamentary support or otherwise until all legislation implementing the agreement is discussed in Parliament.

Discussions will start next Tuesday. 322 parliamentarians voted yes on the amendment while 306 members voted no.

The ex-Tory Sir Oliver Letwin, who tabled the amendment, said that his draft was an “insurance policy” to stop the UK “crashing out automatically.”

The amendment also asks for a further delay to Brexit beyond the initially agreed 31 October deadline.

Johnson was very adamant after the vote was taken that he would not renegotiate with the EU for a further delay.

“Do not be dismayed by this particular result,” Johnson told the House. “The best thing for the UK and for the whole of Europe is for us to leave with this new deal on October 31. I will not negotiate a delay. Neither does the law compel me to do so.

“Further delay would be bad for this country, bad for our European Union and bad for democracy. Next week, we will introduce the legislation,” he said.

The new deal was criticised across the board, meeting disapproval from Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn who said it was a worse deal than the one presented by Johnson’s predecessor.

“I advise the Prime Minister to measure his words very carefully and advise him to apply for an extension which the EU requires him to do,” Corbyn said.

Chief Spokeswoman for the EU Commission Mina Andreeva has said on Twitter that the commission now expects an urgent letter from the UK Parliament on how it would like to proceed. The agreement with the EU was that if the vote on the Brexit deal would be delayed on Saturday, the British government is bound by law to ask for an extension beyond the 31 October deadline.

Johnson’s new deal ditches former Prime Minister Theresa May's backstop clause, the measure designed to prevent a return to physical checks on the Irish border.

It will instead draw a new customs border along the Irish Sea.

As the debate in Parliament went on, thousands gathered in central London calling for a People’s Vote, ostensibly a fresh referendum on the Brexit agreement.

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