Theresa May seeks 3-month delay to Brexit deal

London: British Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday asked for a three-month extension to Article 50, the legal process under which the United Kingdom (UK) is leaving the European Union (EU).

Al Jazeera quoted May, who while addressing the Parliament, said that she does not want a long extension that would potentially involve the UK taking part in elections to the European Parliament in late May, as doing so would fail to honour the result of the 2016 Brexit referendum.

In a letter to European Council President Donald Tusk, May said that she would seek to delay the UK’s exit from the deal until June 30.

May also wrote that she was confident that the British lawmakers would ratify the deal following her negotiations with the EU.

“But this clearly will not be completed before March 29,” May was quoted as saying.

Speaker of the British Parliament John Bercow along with other lawmakers on Monday denied voting again on the Brexit deal as the same agreement was rejected twice.

Citing parliamentary procedure, Bercow underlined that the British government cannot put forth a motion repeatedly before the parliamentarians if it had been previously rejected in the same session.

The UK Parliament has already rejected the Brexit deal twice by substantial margins, even though May repeatedly stated that the hard-pressing issues were resolved and asserted that “this is the only deal possible.”

On March 14, the British Parliament voted in favour of delaying the Brexit process beyond the scheduled date of March 29 and overwhelmingly rejected a call for a second referendum, plunging the country into political chaos.

The vote to delay the UK’s exit from the EU was passed by 412 votes to 202 in the House of Commons, which means the British parliamentarians acknowledged that more time is required to break the deadlock, amid the uncertainty surrounding the country’s status in leaving the European bloc.

May had earlier warned that the Brexit process could be delayed longer if her agreement was rejected for the third time. If that happens, it would force the UK to elect members to the European Parliament in the elections slated to be held in May.

May will be heading to Brussels on Thursday for a two-day EU summit, where she will attempt to secure the delay.