British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he would not negotiate another postponement of Brexit withdrawal after he lost a parliamentary vote on Saturday, forcing him to ask for a delay.
The British parliament voted 322 to 306 against an amendment by former Conservative Oliver Letwin.
Historic session in the British House of Commons
According to legislation passed earlier, the result of this vote obliges Johnson to send a request to the European Union to postpone the scheduled departure date of the bloc on October 31, but Johnson has repeatedly vowed not to do so and stuck his position again on Saturday.
“I will not negotiate a postponement with the EU, nor is the law obliging me to do so”, he told parliament after the vote.” I will tell our friends and colleagues in the European Union what exactly I have said to everyone over the past 88 days since I took office, that any new postponement will harm this country, harm the EU and harm democracy”, he said.
House of Commons session
The European Commission said Britain should now inform it of the next steps as soon as possible, and the government would not put the exit agreement to a vote on Saturday as scheduled. Parliament Speaker Jacob Rees-Mog said the parliament would discuss the Johnson-Brexit agreement and vote on it on Monday. The amendment proposed to postpone the vote on the Brexit agreement until parliament passed legislation necessary to implement it.
Johnson says it is enforceable by October 31, while others say it will require a short “technical” delay when the country withdraws from the bloc to pass the legislation.
A law, already approved by Johnson’s opponents, obliges the prime minister to postpone the date of withdrawal from the EU until Jan. 31, 2020, if he cannot win support for his deal by the end of Saturday. But Britain can still withdraw by the October 31 deadline if parliament passes all required legislation by then.