EU could extend Brexit deadline if London provides good reason - EU

A Union Jack flag is seen on the desk of a Member of the European Parliament ahead of a debate on BREXIT after the vote on british Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal, at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - European Union leaders could decide to extend the March 29 deadline for Britain’s exit from the EU if London provided a valid reason for such a request, the European Commission said on Wednesday

“There has been no UK request for an extension. Should there be a UK request to extend setting out the reasons for such an extension it will be a matter for the EU27 to decide by unanimity,” Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas told a regular news briefing.

Prime Minister Theresa May will try on Wednesday to forge consensus in parliament on a Brexit divorce agreement after the crushing defeat of her own deal left Britain’s exit from the EU in disarray 10 weeks before it is due to leave.

Reporting By Jan Strupczewski and Philip Blenkinsop