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Theresa May publishes article 50 legislation in preparation for MPs' vote

Theresa May publishes article 50 legislation in preparation for MPs' vote

United Kingdom

Theresa May’s government has presented to parliament draft legislation to enable Britain to begin its divorce from the EU.

She hopes the bill, to be initially debated next week, will clear the lower and upper houses by the end of March.

That is her self-imposed deadline to invoke Article 50 – the exit clause of the bloc’s Lisbon Treaty.

The government cannot trigger Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty without an Act of Parliament authorising it to do so.

A Supreme Court ruling forced May to seek parliament’s approval.

“The government cannot trigger Article 50 of the EU’s Lisbon Treaty without an Act of Parliament authorising it to do so,” said Supreme Court President, David Neuberger.

Two years of complex negotiations with Brussels will follow.

On Wednesday, the prime minister bowed to pressure and agreed to detail her plans for Brexit in a White Paper policy document.

Political opponents are alarmed by her push for a clean break with the world’s largest trading bloc – setting a course for a so-called hard Brexit.

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