Boris Johnson set to suspend parliament from October 8 to 14


LONDON: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson intends to ask for parliament to be suspended from October 8 to 14, his Downing Street office said Wednesday, after a previous attempt was ruled unlawful.“These timings would mean parliament is prorogued for the shortest time possible to enable all the necessary logistical preparations” for Queen Elizabeth II to outline the government’s new legislative programme, it said in a statement.

Johnson previously advised the monarch to suspend, or prorogue, parliament from September 10 to October 14. Pro-European lawmakers were outraged and saw the move as an attempt to stifle democratic debate on Britain’s pending departure from the European Union on October 31.

Following legal challenges in England and Scotland, the Supreme Court judged Johnson’s advice to the monarch was unlawful, and deemed the lengthy prorogation frustrated parliament’s constitutional functions.

Britain’s highest court quashed the prorogation, and parliament resumed on September 25. The move would mean parliament is suspended after the close of business on Tuesday and then miss just two sitting days, on October 9 and 10.

Johnson, who took office in July, needs a new suspension if he is to outline his legislative programme for the next session of parliament.

New Brexit plan

Boris Johnson on Wednesday published his “final” Brexit proposals, warning EU leaders that Britain will walk out without a deal on October 31 if they do not accept his terms.

Officials in Brussels and UK opponents of Brexit fear economic chaos if Britain ends its 46-year membership of the European Union without a formal divorce agreement.

Mr. Johnson had earlier warned that this was his “final” offer. But his complex new solution met an initially cool response from Brussels.

A senior MEP said the European Parliament’s initial reaction to it was “not positive at all”.

Mr. Johnson said the sides had until October 11 to hammer out the main outlines of a compromise so it could be included on the agenda of a EU leaders’ summit in Brussels on October 17-18. “Let us be in no doubt… what the alternative is – the alternative is no deal,” Mr. Johnson told his Conservative party conference in Manchester.