British MPs reject calls for managed no-deal Brexit on May 22

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Speaking moments after the vote, Mrs May accepted there was a "clear majority" against no-deal in the Commons.

Mrs May has angered pro-Brexit members of her party by backing the delay with some telling The Sun a split in the party could not be avoided.

However today's vote could still see a majority of MPs voice their disgruntlement which may see significant Brexit uncertainty in the coming weeks, as the March 29 deadline looms. On Monday night, May had held a late-night press conference with the European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, where she triumphantly said the E.U. had agreed to a legally binding change on the "backstop", a key sticking point of the plan among critical lawmakers.

It went further than the government's position of keeping the threat of a "no-deal" Brexit on the negotiating table - a stance many in her party said was essential to push Brussels to make further concessions to the deal they have rejected.

Guy Verhofstadt, the head of the Brexit Steering Group in the European Parliament, said on Wednesday he is "against any extension of Article 50, even for just 24 hours", unless the House of Commons comes out in support for a particular way forward.

May's fellow Conservative Members of Parliament is a blow to the Prime Minister and it means that her Brexit deal is likely to be defeated by MPs in a vote scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday.

British MPs are filling the Westminster Palace's lobbies ahead of the vote this evening, with which they will either accept a departure without a deal or reject it.

As Mrs May swiftly admitted after the results of the latest vote became known in the late hours of Wednesday, the only effect of closing off both the negotiated and non-negotiated pathways to Brexit is that the British government will now have to ask the 27 remaining European Union member-states to delay Britain's departure from the European Union beyond the current date of March 29.

A packed House of Commons as members wait for the result
Camera IconA packed House of Commons as members wait for the

EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said the bloc would need to know why Britain wanted to extend talks and it was up to London to find a way out of the deadlock.

"It is disappointing that the United Kingdom government has been unable to ensure a majority for the withdrawal agreement agreed by both parties in November, even after multiple additional assurances from the EU".

"[The new deal] does not contain anything approaching the changes Theresa May promised parliament, and whipped her MPs to vote for", Corbyn said.

"If the House votes to leave without a deal on 29 March, it will be the policy of the Government to implement that decision", she said.

But lawmakers will finally be given the chance to vote on Wednesday night to avert such a "no deal" Brexit, and likely delay Britain's exit date, too, in what could be yet another blow to May's government. The discussion on Article 50 is done and dusted.

Attorney General for England and Wales Geoffrey Cox, Britain's chief legal adviser, reviewed the changes to the deal and again said it carries too much risk.

She also flagged a second referendum, but warned it could result in no Brexit at all, if the 2016 result was reversed. "Let us, as a House of Commons work now to find a solution", Corbyn said. Britain's departure from the European Union is scheduled to happen March 29, but it's not clear now how or even whether that will occur.

Britons voted by 52-48 percent in 2016 to leave the European Union but the decision has not only divided the main parties but also exposed deep rifts in British society, bringing concerns about immigration and globalisation to the fore.

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