The UK and the EU have agreed on a “flexible extension” of Brexit until 31 October during a summit meeting in Brussels.
“The medium-length extension compromise until October is far from perfect, but we hope it will allow Europeans living in the UK and British in Europe some assurances that their leaders have veered away from a radical rupture that would seriously jeopardise long-term relations,” said the European Green Party co-leading candidate and the Greens/EFA Group co-president in the European Parliament Ska Keller.
“In the UK, the House of Commons has repeatedly been unable to find a majority for the withdrawal agreement or any other proposed solution through the indicative voting process. If parliament cannot find a solution then the best way to resolve the situation would be to put it back to the people with a second referendum. Ultimately, we all win from a calm, orderly solution to Brexit based on the best interests of the people,” she added.
“The extension until 31 October means the UK will now participate in the European elections at the end of May. Green party MEPs from the UK are much more strongly represented in the European Parliament as they are not penalised by the first-past-the-post electoral system that dramatically reduces their impact at a national level. Their contribution to European politics has been significant and their presence highly valued,” said the European Green Party co-leading candidate Bas Eickhout.
“The UK government must now guarantee that the infrastructure is put in place to ensure the smooth running of the European elections. They must be conducted in an organised way that fully respects a cooperative spirit and the democratic right for all citizens to be represented at European level. Crucially, we cannot allow the next Commission to be paralyzed by Brexit and distract it from meeting its environmental, social and democratic challenges, which must come first,” Eickhout concluded.