Wednesday, 28 Oct 2020

Jeremy Corbyn calls urgent meeting on tactics to halt no-deal Brexit

Jeremy Corbyn has invited the leaders of other political parties from across parliament to an urgent meeting to discuss “all tactics available to prevent no-deal”.

Senior backbenchers have also been summoned by the Labour leader in a bid to stop the UK “heading into a constitutional and political storm”.

In a letter, he urged MPs to work with him to “do everything we can” to stop Britain crashing out of the EU without a deal.

A Labour spokesperson also said Mr Corbyn had “postponed international commitments to continue his push to block a damaging no-deal Brexit”.

The letter was addressed to the SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford, the Lib Dems’ Jo Swinson, Plaid Cymru’s Liz Saville Roberts, the Green Party’s Caroline Lucas and Change UK’s Anna Soubry.

Tory Remainers Guto Bebb, Dominic Grieve, Sir Oliver Letwin and Caroline Spelman are also invited, along with independent MP Nick Boles, who quit the party in opposition to the government’s Brexit strategy.

The proposed meeting is set to take place on Tuesday next week.

Mr Corbyn wrote: “Further to our correspondence last week, I would like to invite you to a meeting to discuss all tactics available to prevent no-deal.

“The country is heading into a constitutional and political storm, so it is vital that we meet urgently, before parliament returns.

“The chaos and dislocation of Boris Johnson’s no-deal Brexit is real and threatening, as the government’s leaked Operation Yellowhammer dossier makes crystal clear. That’s why we must do everything we can to stop it.”

Issuing a statement saying he backed the upcoming meeting, Mr Blackford said “all options” had to be up for discussion.

“Boris Johnson is taking the UK towards a Brexit disaster,” he said. “With time running out, it is now vital that MPs take every step necessary to stop Brexit and block a catastrophic no-deal.

“All options must be on the table. The SNP stands ready to pursue every avenue, including passing legislation to block no-deal and a vote of no confidence in the Tory government.”

Last week, Mr Corbyn wrote to senior opposition MPs outlining plans to call a vote of no confidence in the government in the autumn.

The Labour leader would lead a “time-limited” government which would extend Article 50 and call a general election under the proposals.

However, the plan was met with fierce opposition from the Liberal Democrats, with leader Ms Swinson saying Mr Corbyn was too divisive to lead a national unity government.

She suggested senior Tory and Labour backbenchers Ken Clarke and Harriet Harman take the helm instead.

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