British Prime Minister Boris Johnson vowed to secure a divorce deal with the European Union at a crucial summit in October, after lawmakers voted for a second time to reject his bid to hold a snap election.
Johnson had wanted to hold an election in mid-October, before a European Union summit on October 17 and before the country is due to leave the bloc on October 31.
“This government will press on with negotiating a deal, while preparing to leave without one,” Johnson told parliament.
“I will go to that crucial summit on October the 17th and no matter how many devices this parliament invents to tie my hands, I will strive to get an agreement in the national interest.
British MPs on Tuesday voted against holding an early election next month in a fresh blow for beleaguered Johnson.
The vote came just before the suspension of parliament for five weeks - a controversial move decided by Johnson.
Earlier, Johnson insisted on Monday he would not request a delay to Brexit beyond October 31 despite MPs approving a new law that could force him to do so.
“I will not ask for another delay,” he told parliament, adding that if MPs voted against holding an early general election then he would prepare for Britain’s departure from the EU “hopefully with a deal but without one if necessary.”
Johnson suspends UK Parliament after latest Brexit defeat
The simmering showdown between Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Britain’s Parliament over Brexit came to a head as lawmakers delivered three defeats to the government’s plans for leaving the European Union, before being sent home early Tuesday for a contentious five-week suspension of the legislature.
In a session that ran well past midnight, Parliament enacted a law to block a no-deal Brexit next month, ordered the government to release private communications about its Brexit plans and rejected Johnson’s call for a snap election to break the political deadlock.
Parliament was then suspended - or prorogued- at the government’s request until October 14, a drastic move that gives Johnson a respite from rebellious lawmakers as he plots his next move.
Opponents accuse him of trying to avoid democratic scrutiny. What is usually a solemn, formal prorogation ceremony erupted into raucous scenes as opposition lawmakers in the House of Commons chamber shouted “Shame on you” and held up signs reading “Silenced.”
Commons Speaker John Bercow expressed his displeasure at Parliament’s suspension, saying “this is not a standard or normal prorogation.”
“It’s one of the longest for decades and it represents an act of executive fiat,” he said.
The prime minister has had a turbulent week since Parliament returned from its summer break on September 3. He kicked 21 lawmakers out of the Conservative group in Parliament after they sided with the opposition, and saw two ministers quit his government - one of them his own brother.
Parliament’s suspension ended a day of blows to the embattled Johnson. First an opposition-backed measure designed to stop Britain from crashing out of the EU on October 31 without a divorce deal became law after receiving the formal assent of Queen Elizabeth II.
The law compels the government to ask the EU for a three-month delay if no deal has been agreed by October 19.