April 1, 2019 / 9:40 PM / 6 months ago

UK can avoid long Brexit delay by passing deal this week - minister

Britain's Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union Stephen Barclay speaks after a round of voting on alternative Brexit options at the House of Commons in London, Britain April 1, 2019 in this still image taken from video. Reuters TV via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain can avoid a long delay to Brexit and leave the European Union in 11 days’ time if parliament passes a deal this week, Brexit minister Stephen Barclay said on Monday.

Barclay hinted that the Prime Minister Theresa May’s deal could return to parliament for a fourth time this week after lawmakers did not give a majority to any alternatives in so-called indicative votes.

“The only option is to find a way through which allows the UK to leave with a deal. The government continues to believe that the best course of action is to do so as soon as possible,” Barclay told lawmakers after the vote.

“If the house were to agree a deal this week, it would still be possible to avoid holding European parliamentary elections,” he said, referring to EU elections in May which Britain would take part in if it needs a lengthy delay to Brexit.

Reporting by Kate Holton and David Milliken; writing by Alistair Smout; editing by Costas Pitas

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