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The Latest: EU deciding on Brexit extension 'in coming days'

SeattlePI.com Tuesday, 22 October 2019 ()
LONDON (AP) — The Latest on Britain's impending departure from the European Union (all times local):

9 a.m.

European Council President Donald Tusk says European Union leaders "will decide in coming days" whether to grant Britain another extension to the deadline for leaving the bloc, but he says their decision depends on developments in London.

Tusk said Tuesday that the decision on prolonging Brexit for three months after Oct. 31 "will very much depend on what the British parliament decides or doesn't decide."

Britain faces another week of political gridlock after British lawmakers on Monday denied Prime Minister Boris Johnson a chance to hold a vote on the Brexit divorce bill agreed in Brussels last week.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker lamented all the work spent on Brexit rather than on EU policy, calling it a "waste of time and waste of energy."

___

8:50 a.m.

British lawmakers from across the political spectrum are expected to challenge Prime Minister Boris Johnson's drive to push his European Union divorce bill through the House of Commons by Thursday, potentially scuttling plans to deliver Brexit by Oct. 31.

The bill faces two votes Tuesday, with lawmakers first being asked to approve it in principle, followed by a vote on the government's schedule for debate and possible amendments.

While many analysts expect the bill to be approved, lawmakers may reject the three-day timetable because of concerns it doesn't provide enough time for scrutiny.

Ken Clarke, a long-time lawmaker from Johnson's Conservative Party, says "unless you are prepared to contemplate more expansive debate, there is not the slightest possibility of considering the deal that has been obtained within the time available."
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