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Jakarta Post

Theresa May says UK might never leave EU if deal rejected



London, United Kingdom   /   Fri, March 8, 2019   /   08:23 pm
Theresa May says UK might never leave EU if deal rejected A handout photograph released by the UK Parliament shows Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May (C) speaks in the House of Commons in London on January 15, 2019 ahead of the meaningful vote on the Government's Brexit deal. Britain's parliament on Tuesday resoundingly rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal, triggering a no-confidence vote in her government and leaving the country on track to crash out of the EU. (AFP/Mark Duffy / UK Parliament )

Theresa May appealed to members of Parliament to back her deal or risk seeing Brexit canceled, as she urged the European Union to help come up with a compromise.

“Back it and the UK will leave the EU. Reject it and no one knows what will happen,” she said in a speech in Grimsby, northern England. “We may not leave the EU at all,” she said. “the only certainty would be uncertainty."

Meanwhile, asked about Prime Minister Theresa May’s effort to shift the Brexit blame onto the European Union, the EU executive in Brussels said it “has offered ideas” on how to break the impasse over the Irish-border backstop.

“You have followed the process of negotiation and talks very closely, so you know that the EU side has offered ideas on how to give further reassurances regarding the backstop,” said Alexander Winterstein, a spokesman for the European Commission, the EU executive. “Intensive work is ongoing as we speak,” he told reporters in Brussels on Friday.

Conservative Brexiteer Andrea Jenkyns said “it’s looking highly unlikely” May will get her deal through Parliament next week unless there is movement around the contentious Irish backstop issue.

Speaking to Bloomberg TV, Jenkyns said she still hoped the EU would offer further concessions as the deadline to Brexit day nears, but that the U.K. hasn’t been playing its “strongest cards.”

“We’ve seen the way the EU operated with Greece. They said they wouldn’t give any more money in a bailout and then in the final weekend, the final 24 hours, they came up with something,” she said. “It’s whoever blinks first, and unfortunately we’ve blinked first every time.”