LONDON, March 15 (NNN-AGENCIES) — Members of the UK parliament have voted to delay Britain’s departure from the European Union by three months, subject to an approval of Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal within a week.
A government motion for an extension until June 30 to delay Brexit for the purpose of passing the necessary EU exit legislation received 412 votes against 202 on Thursday, on the condition that May’s revised deal wins the House of Commons approval by Wednesday next week.
Parliamentarians also voted by a crushing majority of 334 to 84 against an amendment proposing a second referendum.
MPs approve motion proposing UK’s departure from EU be pushed back to at least June 30.
May will now be expected to request an extension to Article 50 – the exit clause in the EU’s constitution – and Britain’s current March 29 departure date from EU officials, who are required to sign off on any delay to a departure from the bloc.
If May fails to win parliamentary approval for her deal by March 20, the Brexit delay could be extended beyond three months. British legislators have already overwhelmingly rejected her EU divorce deal twice.
On Thursday, a spokesperson for the European Commission, the EU’s executive body, said any delay to Article 50 would require “the unanimous agreement of all 27 member states”, citing the 27 other countries which make up the EU, minus the UK.
EU leaders’ consideration will give “priority to the need to ensure the functioning of the EU institutions” as well as take into account “the reasons for and duration of a possible extension”, the spokesperson said.
The European Council is due to meet next on March 21-22.
MPs voted on Wednesday to rule out a no-deal Brexit under any circumstances by 321 votes to 278.