German official demands Brexit progress as May seeks delay

Wednesday, 10 Apr, 2019

Prime Minister Theresa May has already committed to doing that, but many lawmakers don't trust the government and want an insurance policy.

The chancellor, Philip Hammond, and the shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, are expected on Tuesday to join ongoing talks between Labour and the government as they attempt to thrash out a compromise that both sides can support. Those negotiations are ongoing.

A party spokeswoman said: "We had further detailed and wide-ranging talks with Cabinet ministers and officials today".

The European Union will grant Britain another delay to Brexit on certain conditions, including that it hold European Parliament elections, according to draft conclusions of the bloc's national leaders, who are due to decide on the matter on Wednesday.

The comments raised speculation that Macron might take a tough line at the Brussels meeting, which would led to Britain crashing out of the bloc without a deal.

"If the United Kingdom is still a Member of the EU on 23 - 26 May 2019 and if it has not ratified the Withdrawal Agreement by 22 May 2019, it must hold the elections to the European Parliament in accordance with Union law", the draft says.

Roth said that "within the European Union, there isn't an endless readiness to keep talking about delays so long as there is no substantial progress on the British side".

"The prime minister's deal ... has a lot of the very positive attributes that anyone would want in a relationship where we can trade freely with the European Union".

The EU's chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, also said the length of any delay will depend on the rationale May presents in Brussels on Wednesday.

While the Prime Minister appears to prefer a series of short extensions, top Eurocrat Tusk appears to reject this approach, insisting on one long extension instead.

If the European Council proposes a different extension date, Mrs May would need to return to the Commons to obtain MPs' approval. Legislation offered by Members of Parliament (MPs) Yvette Cooper and Oliver Letwin (EU Withdrawal No. 5 Act) has now been passed into law; it requires the Prime Minister to pass a motion to extend Article 50 to a date specified in the bill.

Britain's parliament has backed Prime Minister Theresa May's plan to seek another Brexit delay, this time until June 30.

Andrea Leadsom has said Theresa May should demand the reopening of the European Union withdrawal agreement when she meets Angela Merkel, an option both the prime minister and European Union leaders have repeatedly ruled out.

The move came as the Government and Labour were holding talks on trying to break the Brexit deadlock.

May had requested only a short delay to avoid having to take part in European Parliament elections, which are scheduled for May 26, but a longer postponement would mean Britain participating.

"Decisiveness and unanimity is essential at the European Council summit of government leaders", stressed Seibert.