Macron says no-deal Brexit if British MPs reject May's plan again

Thursday - 21/03/2019 10:48
FILE PHOTO: France's President Emmanuel Macron. © Reuters / Ian Langsdon
FILE PHOTO: France's President Emmanuel Macron. © Reuters / Ian Langsdon
The UK will have to leave the EU with “no deal” if the British MPs reject the EU-backed accord once again, the French President Emmanuel Macron has warned.

The existing draft, which has been consistently rejected by the British parliamentarians, is the result of two years of negotiations and the EU should make it clear that it cannot be simply renegotiated, Macron said during the Brexit summit in Brussels.

If British MPs reject the deal once again, there will be no deal.

The French president also noted that the current situation cannot be prolonged “indefinitely” and the “choice of the British people” has to be respected. “We cannot pretend after three years that the British people did not vote to leave.”

Macron’s message sounded somewhat contradictory, however, as he also said that he is “open to a technical extension” of the Brexit deadline, but he stressed that the ball is in London’s court.

It is up to the UK to tell the EU what its new policy would be, he said, adding that another deadline extension would require a “clear plan” on the UK’s part.

“We must be clear, to ourselves, our British friends and our people. Firstly, we’ve been negotiating the withdrawal agreement for two years. It cannot be renegotiated. Secondly, in the event of another ‘No’ vote in Britain, we will be heading towards a no deal. Everyone knows it,” Macron said as he arrived at a summit of European leaders in Brussels.

The British parliament is expected to vote on the EU-backed offer for the third time next week. Despite two previous defeats in the legislature, Prime Minister Theresa May is still urging parliamentarians to finally support the accord.

She also said that she had asked President of the European Council Donald Tusk to extend Article 50 up to June 30 to give British MPs the time to make a “final choice.” At the same time, she called the fact that the UK would fail to leave the EU on the scheduled date of March 29 a “matter of great personal regret.”

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 Keywords: UK, Brexit, European Union

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