News World British PM Johnson bids for election, as opponents seek to stop no-deal...

British PM Johnson bids for election, as opponents seek to stop no-deal Brexit

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will try to call a snap election on Wednesday after lawmakers seeking to prevent him taking Britain out of the European Union without a divorce deal dealt him a humbling parliamentary defeat.

Parliament’s move leaves Brexit up in the air, with possible outcomes ranging from a turbulent no-deal exit to abandoning the whole endeavour – both outcomes would be unacceptable to swathes of the United Kingdom’s voters.

An alliance of opposition lawmakers backed by 21 rebels from Johnson’s Conservative Party defeated the government on Tuesday on a motion allowing them to try to pass a law which would force a three-month extension to Britain’s EU exit date.

Johnson cast the rebellion as an attempt to surrender to the EU, vowed never to delay Brexit beyond Oct. 31 and said the country needed an election. The government has scheduled a vote on an election after about 1800 GMT on Wednesday.

But opposition parties and rebels in his own party said they would not allow a no-deal Brexit to be “smuggled” through under the cover of an election.

“We’re not going to dance to his tune,” said Keir Starmer, the opposition Labour Party’s point man on Brexit. “It’s obvious what he’s up to. He wants to intercept this bill having lost control of parliament and stop us finishing the task in hand.

“We’re not going to vote with Boris Johnson today to deprive ourselves of the opportunity to complete the business that we’ve just seized control of the house to do,” he said.

The showdown between prime minister and parliament continues on Wednesday with a dizzying array of events planned including a vote on the attempt to block no deal, a vote on Johnson’s election bid and weekly questions to the prime minister.

As the three-year Brexit crisis approaches a crescendo, the United Kingdom was edging towards an election as most British politicians see no other way to break the impasse.

One scenario is for opposition parties to defeat Johnson’s bid for an election until they have passed their bill blocking a no-deal Brexit. Once in law, opposition parties could then agree to an election, possibly on Oct. 15.

“Base case is pre-Brexit election, but not necessarily before the 31st October,” U.S. investment bank Citi said. “No deal risk persists, but now wrapped in a general election.”

BREXIT HANGS IN BALANCE

Beyond the frantic push and shove of British politics, the United Kingdom still fundamentally has three main Brexit options: leave with a deal, leave without a deal or cancel Brexit altogether.

An October election would open up three likely options: a Brexit-supporting government under Johnson, a Labour government led by veteran socialist Jeremy Corbyn or a hung parliament that could lead to a coalition or minority government of some kind.

The type of Brexit that emerges from that election is unclear, though there would be little time for a deal before the Oct. 31 deadline. An avowedly pro-Brexit government could overturn any laws aimed at preventing a no-deal Brexit.

Johnson has promised to lead the United Kingdom out of the European Union with or without a deal, raising fears that he could catapult the world’s fifth largest economy into an abrupt departure from the bloc without agreement on how to handle everything from food regulations to car component imports.

In a sign of just how far Brexit has distorted British politics, Johnson’s Conservatives vowed to expel the 21 rebels – including the grandson of Britain’s World War Two leader Winston Churchill and two former finance ministers – from the party. Johnson also lost his working majority in parliament.

(Reuters)

 

Top Stories

New record number of new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday: 152

The Health Ministry announced 153 new COVID-19 cases on 20 October, out of 4,410 laboratory tests, taking confirmed infections to 2, 839. The break-down of...

Stench in Kokkinotrimithia and Mammari due to farms and burned garbage

Citizens of Kokkinotrimithia and Mammari contacted philenews and complained that at the Kafkalla location some people threw a huge quantity of garbage and set...

Police chasing suspects in Paphos

Members of the Anti-Narcotics Unit who were watching some suspects for drug trafficking, according to first information, chased a suspicious vehicle which tried to...

71-year-old dead in accident

During an accident that took place this morning in the district of Nicosia, 71-year-old Andreas Alexandrou from Kato Moni of Nicosia District lost his...

Rain and hail in Lympia and Xylotympou (PHOTOS)

Rain and hail were seen in various areas of Cyprus. Social media users published photos from Lympia and Xylotympou. (philenews)

Taste

Squash soup

Ingredients: 1 kg pumpkin, cut into small cubes, approximately 5 cups 2 medium (400g) sweet potatoes, cut into cubes, approximately 2 ½ cups 1 chopped leek, only...

Mezedes

No visit to Cyprus is complete without enjoying the traditional meal of many small dishes known as ‘meze’. This large feast, which has been a...

Prawns with fried cheese, barley shaped pasta

Put the barley shaped pasta into a small pan with salted water, bring to a boil and when tender, drain. Peal the prawns leaving...

Salmon and shrimp sheftalies

Mix all ingredients for tabbouli in a bowl and keep to one side so flavours can combine. Prepare the sheftalies: wash and soak the casing...