Queen accepts request to suspend parliament as Johnson accused of staging ‘coup d’etat’
The government is set to suspend parliament from the second week of September for almost five-week end with a Queen’s Speech on 14 October.
MPs opposed to a no-deal Brexit are furious, reaction coming from several who are accusing Boris Johnson of acting like a “tin-pot dictator”. Jeremy Corbyn said it was “a threat to our democracy” and has written to the Queen requesting an urgent meeting.
The European Parliament’s Brexit co-ordinator Guy Verhofstadt called the move “sinister”. Mr Johnson responded by claiming the suspension was necessary because his new government had an “agenda” to set out.
“Taking back control” has never looked so sinister. As a fellow parliamentarian, my solidarity with those fighting for their voices to be heard.
Suppressing debate on profound choices is unlikely to help deliver a stable future EU – UK relationship.https://t.co/NyCoLA8nFe
— Guy Verhofstadt (@guyverhofstadt) August 28, 2019
Steve Barclay has insisted that a Brexit deal is possible if there is “goodwill on all sides”, and suggested that people would blame the EU’s “lack of flexibility” if the UK leaves the bloc without a deal.
Speaking at a meeting of business leaders in Paris, the Brexit secretary said:
“The British government are aiming for a deal.
“We will be ready for no-deal if it happens, but from meetings I’ve had here this morning, those in Denmark, Finland, Sweden last week, one thing is absolutely clear.
“Businesses across Europe want an end to the uncertainty and have the confidence to take advantage of the huge opportunities that trading with the United Kingdom presents.
“That is best served with a deal. A deal that honours the Belfast Good Friday Agreement but without the backstop, as the UK parliament has made clear.
“That is what our government seeks and, with goodwill on all sides, it is what we can deliver.”
He urged the EU to show the same “creativity and flexibility” he said it had shown in the past, adding:
“Look at the arrangements with Switzerland, look at the arrangements where East Germany reunified with the West.
“So let’s look at these issues afresh, as partners.
“For if not, and we move to a no-deal exit, people will question in the future why there was such a lack of flexibility.”
‘A very British coup’
Shadow chancellor John McDonnell has called the move to suspend parliament a “very British coup” with the objective of “preventing democracy working”.
Mr McDonnell accused Boris Johnson of “imposing a policy” by preventing “parliamentary debate and discussion”.
A Very British Coup is the title of Chris Mullin’s novel in which a left-wing leader of the Labour Party becomes prime minister and is targeted by a conspiracy between civil servants, MI5, the CIA and the media.
Chris Mullin was the Labour MP for Sunderland South from 1987-2010.
- The Queen has approved a plan to suspend Parliament from early September
- It will happen no earlier than September 9 and no later than September 12
- The Queen’s Speech opening a new parliamentary session will be on 14 October
- PM Boris Johnson says it will set out his “very exciting agenda”
- The move leaves less time for MPs to pass any laws to stop a no-deal Brexit
- Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says he is “appalled at the recklessness of Johnson’s government”
- House of Commons Speaker John Bercow says the move is a “constitutional outrage”
- Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon says the PM is “acting like a tin pot dictator”