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United Kingdom faces ‘total uncertainty’ if Brexit deal rejected - health minister

14 March, 2019, 11:29 | Author: Lucille Rivera
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The assessments left May's deal hanging by a thread.

With EU leaders warning there would be no more changes or negotiations, and less than three weeks to go until the U.K.is due to leave, British lawmakers were facing a stark choice in a vote later: support a deal many consider inadequate or run the risk that Brexit might happen chaotically, or not at all.

"We are committed to ratifying this deal before 29 March", the spokesperson said, adding that it was now for Britain's MPs to set the course for the next steps for Brexit.

"No policy on tariffs can come close to compensating for the disruption, cost and job losses that would result", said Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

He warned that UK MPs now needed to back the deal. "However, the matter of law affecting withdrawal can only inform what is essentially a political decision that each of us must make".

If the deal is rejected on Tuesday, MPs are expected to vote against a "no deal" exit on Wednesday, paving the way for a vote on delaying Brexit on Thursday.

With Theresa May likely to be humiliated again seeking further concessions in Strasbourg today and in tomorrow's vote, it appears city institutions have been voting with their feet, moving operations overseas.

The PM said she "passionately believed" her Brexit deal addressed concerns raised by MPs who feared the backstop would keep the United Kingdom in a customs arrangement with the European Union indefinitely.

While the approved motion against no deal has no legal force. John Whittingdale, a Brexit-supporting Conservative, said the attorney general's advice was "pretty terminal" for May's plan. Another Brexiteer, Owen Paterson, tweeted that Cox's opinion made it "brutally clear" that nothing had changed. The Labour Party said she had fallen far short of her promises to parliament.

May has secured "legally binding changes" which improve the Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration, Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington, who May's de facto deputy, told the British parliament. "The government's strategy is now in tatters".

Body found in Guatemala during search for missing Brit Catherine Shaw
The charity's chief executive, Matthew Searle, suggested that Shaw had been fasting, and could have died from lack of sustenance. It added: "Formal identification has not taken place but the body is believed to be Catherine". "She died doing what she loved".

Groups of MPs are preparing to test their versions of Brexit via a series of amendments if it is clear May's deal is doomed.

The Daily Mail says there is now speculation over how long Mrs May will remain as Prime Minister, although her aides have insisted she has not considered resigning.

The UK's labyrinthine crisis over European Union membership is approaching its finale with an extraordinary array of options including a delay, a last-minute deal, no-deal Brexit, a snap election or even another referendum.

- The sides also commit to "working speedily" to agree by end-2020 alternative arrangements to the backstop. It is what we do with the second chance that counts.

Michael Gove, who campaigned for Brexit in 2016, said if May lost Tuesday's vote the government would effectively lose control of Brexit.

In a day of frenetic diplomacy ahead of a Tuesday parliamentary vote on her deal, May spoke to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in an effort to find a way through the Brexit maze.

Significantly the date chosen coincides with the start of the European elections.

Tory MP George Freeman said Mrs May should quit after Brexit rather than have a "panicked change of leader now", telling BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I hope the Prime Minister can get withdrawal through and then I do think we need to choose a new leader for a new generation with a new vision of a conservativism that can make sense of Brexit and reinspire and reunite the nation".

"Today is our Hotel California moment".

She called for intensification in "planning for a no-deal crash with an imperative to ensure no return to a hard border protections of our agreements and safeguarding the rights of citizens".

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