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Brussels isn’t blameless as May’s Brexit deal lies in tatters in London

26 0 9
16.01.2019

UK Prime Minister Theresa May suffered a devastating defeat on Tuesday on her Brexit withdrawal deal, losing by a massive 432 votes to 202. Westminster is in turmoil, following the biggest defeat for any government in over a century. But, the ballot should also be a wake-up call for Brussels and the EU-27.

British governments have only been defeated in the House of Commons by more than 100 votes three times in the past century, and Tuesday’s vote easily exceeded those. All those previous votes were in 1924, underlining what a historic reversal Tuesday's vote represented, and why May’s remaining authority has been shredded.

With May's Brexit withdrawal deal now looking dead, and a change of government ever more likely, pressure will also intensify on Brussels to show more political imagination to reach a resolution to the impasse. This includes potentially extending the two-year Article 50 process, which would require the unanimous support of the 27 members of the EU, with current end-of-March deadlines fast approaching.

More imagination and flexibility are especially important given that all sides want to avoid a no-deal scenario. This is because forecasts indicate such an outcome could be very damaging not just to the UK, but also Ireland and continental Europe.

‘Basically dead’: Brexit in chaos as British MPs reject May’s deal with EU

As a remainer in 2016, who wishes Brussels well and wants to see Britain continue to be in a close, cooperative relationship........

© South China Morning Post