Leaders of the 27 countries remaining in the European Union and British Prime Minister Theresa May have agreed to extend Brexit until October 31, the chair of EU summits said in a tweet.
At an emergency meeting in Brussels on Wednesday, the EU leaders agreed to offer May a six-month extension that was accepted by May.
“EU27/UK have agreed a flexible extension until 31 October. This means additional six months for the UK to find the best possible solution,” European Council President Donald Tusk’s text read.
EU27/UK have agreed a flexible extension until 31 October. This means additional six months for the UK to find the best possible solution.
— Donald Tusk (@eucopresident) April 10, 2019
May had asked to postpone Britain’s departure – that was scheduled to take place on March 29 – from the EU until June 30.
Most EU leaders favoured a longer term, until year-end or later, according to EU sources. But French President Emmanuel Macron insisted Brexit must not threaten the functioning of the EU.
The extension is flexible, EU diplomats say, meaning Britain can leave once its Brexit divorce deal is ratified. However, if it stays beyond May 22, the country will likely be required to participate in EU elections.
More to follow