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Johnson told Tusk he will send Brexit letter today


European Council President Donald Tusk addresses media representatives at a press conference during a European Union Summit at European Union Headquarters in Brussels on October 18, 2019. (Photo by Aris OIKONOMOU / AFP)

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the president of the European Council Donald Tusk on Saturday that he would send him a letter within the day to ask for a delay to Brexit.

An EU source told AFP that Tusk and Johnson had spoken by telephone at 8:15 pm Brussels time (1815 GMT), and said: “The PM confirmed that the letter would be sent to Tusk today.

“Tusk will on that basis start consulting EU leaders on how to react. This may take a few days,” he added.

Johnson insists he does not want to postpone Britain’s departure from the European Union beyond the current October 31 Brexit deadline, and will not “negotiate” with the Brussels to do so.

But, after he lost a parliamentary vote earlier Saturday, he is compelled by British law to send a letter to requestion an extension until January 31, 2020, while parliament works on Brexit legislation.

The decision will come down to the other 27 EU leaders, but it will be Tusk’s job as head of the European Council to gather their views and he could call a special summit to approve an extension.

The letter is due to be sent to his office by midnight on Saturday (2200 GMT).


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