UK asks for Brexit extension until June 30
LONDON (AA): Prime Minister Theresa May has said she has requested an extension to Article 50 — the clause of the EU treaty under which Britain is leaving — until June 30.
Speaking in the House of Commons at a weekly question session on Wednesday, May said she has sent a letter to EU Council President Tusk adding that she intends to bring forward further domestic proposals on the Irish backstop.
“As prime minister, I am not prepared to delay Brexit any further than June 30,” May told lawmakers.
The new date for Brexit, if approved by all other 27 members of the EU, will see the U.K. avoid joining the European parliament elections due in May.
May said she does not think holding European elections would be in anyone’s interests and “that would be unacceptable”. May also said the government will hold another meaningful vote.
U.K. voters decided to leave the union in a 2016 referendum.
Meanwhile, speaking at a news conference in Berlin, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman said the leaders of all other 27 EU member states will discuss May’s request during a summit in Brussels on Thursday and Friday.
“We welcome that there is a clear request now by the UK,” said Steffen Seibert, adding that this would provide the basis for intensive discussions among the leaders.