Brexit latest: Theresa May dealt blow by Attorney General

Brexit latest: Theresa May dealt blow by Attorney General

The so-called Star Chamber of lawyers convened by the Leave-backing European Research Group found that agreements reached by the Prime Minister in 11th-hour talks in Strasbourg do not deliver the legally-binding changes the Commons has demanded. As a result, GBP has dropped and risk appetite more generally has tumbled.

Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer said: "The Attorney General has confirmed that there have been no significant changes to the Withdrawal Agreement despite the legal documents that were agreed last night. For the European Union it's of utmost importance that the integrity of the single market be preserved, and that there be no hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland".

"I will speak in more detail about them when I open that debate". If you missed it, here's a recording.

The Prime Minister set out a clear objective for legally binding change which would command a majority in the House of Commons in line with the Brady amendment.

"Cox's opinion casts doubts on whether a sufficient number of MPs will see sufficient change to back May's deal tonight".

Labour MPs have been calling for clarification on what will happen on March 29 - the day the United Kingdom is scheduled to officially leave the EU.

The leaders of the 28 member states will meet next week on March 21 for a long-planned European Council summit, but officials say there will be no third chance to rejig a deal already rejected once by Westminster lawmakers.

"However, the legal risk remains unchanged that if through no such demonstrable failure of either party, but simply because of intractable differences, that situation does arise, the United Kingdom would have, at least while the fundamental circumstances remained the same, no internationally lawful means of exiting the Protocol's arrangements, save by agreement", said the Cox legal advice.

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A favourable vote would clear the way for Britain to leave the European Union on March 29 - almost three years after Britain backed withdrawal from the bloc in a referendum.

"Let's be crystal clear about the choice: it is this deal or Brexit might not happen at all", he said.

She said parliament was now at an impasse: "Does it wish to revoke Article 50 (announcing intention to leave the EU)?"

Her frantic trip sparked anxiety among some MPs, who feared they might not have enough time to scrutinise what she agreed to before being asked to vote.

The British parliament will vote later Tuesday on whether to back the withdrawal agreement, after May returned from meetings in Strasbourg brandishing what she said were new guarantees from Europe.

"For now markets remain convinced that Parliament will act to rule out exiting with no deal - and tomorrow's vote is likely to confirm this assumption", said Ranko Berich, head of market analysis at Monex Europe.

It means the world's fifth largest economy could leave the European Union without a deal; there could be an extension to the March 29 divorce date which is enshrined in law; May could hold a snap election or try a third time to get her deal passed; or a another referendum on the issue is also possible.

"We have secured legal changes", May said in a late night news conference in Strasbourg beside Juncker, 17 days before the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on March 29.

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