Prime Minister Theresa May on Thursday urged lawmakers to help find a compromise on a deal for leaving the European Union, after securing an extension to Brexit in “difficult” talks with EU leaders.
May and EU leaders agreed an extension until Oct. 31 at the latest, narrowly averting a no-deal Brexit on Friday.
She told the Commons, parliament’s elected main house, that talks in Brussels were “difficult’’.
“Unsurprisingly many of our European partners share the deep frustration that I know so many of us feel in this house over the current impasse,’’ she stressed.
May said ongoing talks on a possible way forward with the main opposition party, Labour, were constructive, adding that she hopes they will produce a “single unified approach’’ to put before parliament.
Labour’s key demand is that Britain remains in a long-term customs union with the EU.
May said the date of Brexit and Britain’s participation in European Parliamentary elections in late May “remain a decision for this house.’’
“The choices we face are stark and the timetable is clear.
“I believe we must now press on at pace with our efforts to reach a consensus on a deal that is in the national interest,’’ she said.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said talks with May’s Conservative government are “serious, detailed and ongoing’’.
However, said lawmakers must consider what happens once May, who has promised to step down once Brexit is finalised, leaves office.
“We have no idea who may succeed her, so with that in mind we have to entrench any agreement,’’ Corbyn said.
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