Risk of no-deal Brexit 'very real,' says EU Commission head Juncker

18 Septembre, 2019, 18:44 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • A general view of UK Supreme Court hearing in London

He also said decisions to prorogue Parliament "are inherently and fundamentally political in nature" and not a matter for the courts.

He said if the court intervened it would violate the "fundamental constitutional principle" of the separation of powers between courts and the government.

Farage, who commands the largest single party of MEPs in the European parliament, with 29 MEPs, said the EU's plan was to trap the United Kingdom inside the bloc, because it fears Britain would be "much wealthier" alone. "I asked the British Prime Minister to spell out the alternative arrangements that he is envisaging".

The government claims the shutdown was routine and not related to Brexit. It also states that if there is a no deal departure that will be entirely the responsibility of the United Kingdom, language which can be interpreted as a retort to UK politicians who have accused the European Union of being intransigent and unwilling to compromise in the negotiations.

Mr Johnson says the five-week suspension is to allow the Government to set out a new legislative agenda in a Queen's Speech when MPs return to Parliament on October 14. But many United Kingdom lawmakers believe a no-deal Brexit would be economically devastating and socially destabilising. If so, Johnson risks falling foul of a law hastily passed by the United Kingdom parliament requiring him to ask for another Brexit delay- a third- by October 19 if no new deal is worked out with the EU. "It is not enough to explain to us why the backstop should be removed".

During a series of exchanges with the judges on the second day of a historic hearing in London, the barrister also said any attempt to call Mr Johnson to give evidence in court would have been "resisted like fury" had it been made.

Juncker met UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Luxembourg on Monday, the first time the two have engaged in formal negotiations since Johson became prime minister in July.

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Mrs Miller's action is supported by former prime minister Sir John Major, shadow attorney general Baroness Chakrabarti and the Scottish and Welsh Governments, who are all interveners in the Supreme Court case.

While the outgoing President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker's statement on Wednesday that he has "no sentimental attachment to the backstop" may suggest that there is some room to renegotiate the withdrawal treaty, even without the backstop in its current form the EU will insist that something very much like it must replace it to avoid a so-called "hard border" between the UK's Northern Ireland and the EU's Republic of Ireland - likely involving a new "customs union" with the bloc.

Lord Pannick argued on Tuesday that Mr Johnson's motive for an "exceptionally long" prorogation was to "silence" Parliament, and that his decision was an "unlawful abuse of power".

"I said to Prime Minister [Boris] Johnson that I have no emotional attachment to the safety net, to the backstop, but I stated that I stand by the objectives that it is created to achieve", he said.

"Until such time as those proposals have been presented I will not be able to tell you, looking you straight in the eye, that any real progress has been achieved".

At the High Court in London, the Lord Chief Justice Lord Burnett and two other judges rejected a challenge against the Prime Minister's prorogation move by campaigner and businesswoman Mrs Miller.

After Wednesday's debate, the European Parliament is set to adopt a resolution outlining its concerns about the UK's impending exit, still scheduled for October 31.



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