by N. Peter Kramer
The Queen has given Royal Assent to the legislation for Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal, paving the way for the UK to leave the EU at the end of January. Opposition members of the House of Lords battled till the end to amend the Withdrawal Act but were overruled by Boris Johnson’s majority in the House of Commons. Some hours later the Queen has given Royal Assent to the legislation for the Brexit deal, paving the way for the UK to leave the EU at the end of January. ‘At times it felt we would never cross the Brexit finish line’, the Prime Minister said. But 3 ½ years after voters opted for Brexit in the June 2016 referendum, it is going to happen.
After years of negotiations between the British government and the EU, UK lawmakers repeatedly defeated attempts by Johnson’s predecessor Theresa May to finalise departure terms. The situation changed when Johnson’s Conservatives won the December 12 election that gave the Prime Minister an 80-strong majority in the Commons. The result of this election showed a consistent will of the voters, it was a clear confirmation of the outcome of the 2016 referendum: ‘get Brexit done’!
The day of departure marks the start of the negotiations on the future ties and relationships for trade, security and many other areas by the end of 2020. Johnson insists he won’t agree to any delay beyond the end of this year. But the new European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, warned already that it would be ‘impossible’ to reach a trade deal by the end of 2020. To prove that, her spokesperson yesterday let know, that the Brexit trade talks are delayed until March.
The Brexit frustrations are still alive in Brussels…