May to hold face-to-face meetings with Merkel and Macron over Brexit extension

Theresa May to meet Merkel and Macron in push for Brexit extension

May was meeting German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday as part of a charm offensive before an European Union summit when she will find out whether leaders are willing to give her another Brexit delay.

She has requested a delay to Brexit to 30 June, but said she wants to complete the ratification of withdrawal plans in Britain by 22 May to avoid British participation in European elections.

Yet nothing is resolved and many opponents of Brexit say the whole divorce is at risk, especially if there is a long delay.

No Brexit: Revoking Article 50 would be hugely controversial, but faced with the prospect of a no-deal and its consequences it is not an impossible outcome.

The law was passed on the initiative of MPs, subverting the normal order in which parliament debates and passes government-proposed legislation.

"We should all be very clear what this extension would be for - it is all about making sure we leave the European Union in a timely and orderly way and that means leaving with a deal", government Solicitor-General Robert Buckland said ahead of the vote.

These would include no reopening of the near 600-page withdrawal agreement signed by May and European Union leaders in November and a promise from London that it would maintain "sincere cooperation" during the extension.

"We are in a very, very frustrating situation here", said Germany's minister for European affairs Michael Roth, as he and fellow EU officials arrived for Luxembourg talks on the eve of the summit.

Further to those, the paper also demands the United Kingdom acts "in a constructive and responsible manner... in accordance with the duty of honest cooperation".

She's now on her way to Paris, where she will hold similar talks with French President Emmanuel Macron.

The comments raised speculation that Macron might take a tough line at the Brussels meeting, which would led to Britain crashing out of the bloc without a deal.

There appears little appetite for May's preference of a delay to June 30, unless the prime minister can prove she is on track to finding a way through parliament.

"Furthermore, in the event of a continued stalemate, such a longer extension would allow the United Kingdom to rethink its Brexit strategy".

In a dramatic evening in the Commons last week, MPs narrowly backed the the bill by just one vote.

Labour business spokeswoman Rebecca Long-Bailey said there had not been "any fundamental shift. but we're hopeful that progress will be made". The PM has already pledged to resign once her deal is passed, and recently began crisis talks with the Labour Party in a bid to find some way through the current deadlock.

Support from the opposition Labour Party was key to May's victory, with only 31 percent of votes in favour coming from members of her own Conservative Party.

He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "It would be nonsensical for me to be given a free vote, to be allowed to vote the way I wish to vote, but then to explain I would lose my position".

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