Brexit: I don't want to leave EU without a deal, PM Theresa May to lawmakers

WION Web Team
London, UK Updated: Jan 29, 2019, 10:05 PM(IST)

File photo: Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May. Photograph:( AFP )

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Britain is scheduled to leave the European Union on March 29, however, May's plan was rejected by parliamentarians on January 15 leading to a stalemate.

PM Theresa May told the British Parliament today that she did not want to leave the European Union(EU) without an agreement as it would "disrupt lives and hurt the economy" while asserting that holding a general election would be a "waste of time".

"I accept that this house does not want the deal that I put before it in the form that it currently exist, the vote was decisive and I listened. So the world know what this house does not want. Today we need to send an emphatic message about what we do want," May told parliamentarians during her speech.

Britain is scheduled to leave the European Union on March 29, however, May's plan was rejected by parliamentarians on January 15 leading to a stalemate.

"I do not want to leave the EU without a deal because that would hurt our economy and disrupt people's lives. It does not want to hold a general election because it would waste time, increase division and solve none of the problems we face," she said, adding,"this house renewed its confidence in her Majesty's government a fortnight ago. Neither do I see anything approaching a majority across the house to hold a second referendum."

MPs are set to vote on measures that could include preventing a no-deal Brexit, delaying Brexit, changing the negotiated deal and even seizing control of the entire process. The proposed measure put forward for Tuesday's votes calls for the backstop to be replaced with "alternative arrangements to avoid a hard border" on the island of Ireland.

"I think there is a willingness on the other side in terms of the European Union to agree a deal with the United Kingdom. But what they clearly said when the meaningful vote was lost, they wanted to know what it was the UK wanted to see happening in relation to the deal. That's an opportunity that we have today," May told parliamentarians.

"This amendment will give the mandate I need to negotiate with Brussels an arrangement that commands a majority in this house," May said. "What I'm talking about is not a further exchange of letters, but a significant and legally-binding change to the Withdrawal Agreement."

Before the Parliament opened, British stocks jumped Tuesday and the pound was firmer ahead of the votes.

London's benchmark FTSE 100 index was 1.3 per cent higher in midday deals, while the pound held recently won ground versus the dollar.

"Today we have the chance to show the European Union what it will take to get a deal through this House of Commons. What it will take to move beyond the confusion and division and uncertainty that now hangs over us and onto the bright new close open relationship that we want to build with our European friends in the years ahead," May said.

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