CABINET ministers are urging Theresa May to “embrace No Deal Brexit” after her deal was defeated for the third time.
Today’s rejection of the PM’s Brexit deal in the House of Commons sounds its probable death knell, and leaves Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union in turmoil.
Theresa May leaving Parliament today[/caption]
The PM is due to hold a conference call with ministers on Sunday night, reports the Telegraph.
The paper says that cabinet ministers will try to wrest control of Brexit by telling Mrs May that it’s “time to embrace no deal”.
Within minutes of MPs shunning her deal, European Council President Donald Tusk said EU leaders would meet on April 10 to discuss Britain’s departure from the bloc.
Reuters reports that a succession of European leaders said there was a very real chance Britain would now leave without a deal, a scenario that businesses fear would cause chaos for the world’s fifth-biggest economy.
White House national security adviser John Bolton told Reuters that President Donald Trump sympathised with May, and said once again that the US was keen to sign a trade deal with Britain once it was no longer in the bloc.
Mrs May had framed the vote as the last opportunity to ensure Britain actually left the EU, pleading with MPs to put aside party differences and strongly-held beliefs.
But in today’s special sitting of parliament, they voted 344-286 against the EU Withdrawal Agreement, agreed after two years of tortuous negotiations with the bloc.
Mrs May said: “The legal default now is that the UK is due to leave the European Union on April 12.”
She cautioned that any further delay to Brexit would probably be a long one beyond the current deadline, and would mean Britain holding elections to the European Parliament.
While there was plenty of drama in Parliament, outside, thousands of pro-Brexit protesters shut down Westminster this afternoon as they celebrated what should have been our independence day.
There were five arrests this evening as protesters gathered outside Parliament, Downing Street and in Trafalgar Square.
Brexit protesters gathered outside Downing Street this evening[/caption]
Demonstrators are marking what had been earmarked as Brexit day[/caption]
Earlier, today Parliament Square was jam-packed with passionate activists rallying for Brexit – who were furious that our official exit day has been scrapped.
Aerial views showed the crowds filling up every space available in front of the Houses of Parliament and along Whitehall, with traffic diverted elsewhere.
Fuming Brexiteers marched through central London, sang Land of Hope and Glory, cheered and waved their flags.
Les Curtis, 70, who joined the protest from south east London told the Press Association: “I still want ‘no deal’ because then there’s no argument – then if we have any problems we can only blame ourselves.”
His pal, 65-year-old Ray Finch from Essex added: “What we want is freedom and democracy.
“If MPs don’t do what they are told they should be sacked, the same as everyone else in the country.”
They gathered just hours after Theresa May’s Brexit deal was defeated for the third time earlier today.
Her agreement – even without the political declaration in it – was slapped down by 58 votes.
The pound plummeted at the news and the EU said they were now thought that No Deal was likely.
But Theresa May hinted that another election could be on the cards.
EU bosses called an emergency summit, but Eurocrat Martin Selmayr said we can still revoke Article 50 and cancel Brexit altogether.
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Far-right hot head Tommy Robinson also addressed crowds today, but his voice broke and struggled to be heard.
He told those who had turned out: “Theresa May, are you listening?”
Among the people arrested at the protest was one man who was wanted for an offence in Hertfordshire and another man on suspicion of assaulting a police officer.