December 12, 2018 / 9:03 AM / a year ago

UK PM May says a new leader would have to extend or rescind Brexit notice

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May addresses the media outside 10 Downing Street after it was announced that the Conservative Party will hold a vote of no confidence in her leadership, in London, Britain, December 12, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville

LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May, who faces a vote of no confidence in her leadership of the Conservative Party on Wednesday, said any new leader would have to extend the March 29 deadline for Britain’s exit from the European Union.

“A new leader wouldn’t be in place by Jan. 21 legal deadline, so a leadership election risks handing control of the Brexit negotiations to opposition MPs in Parliament,” May said.

“A new leader wouldn’t have time to re-negotiate a withdrawal agreement and get the legislation through Parliament by March 29, so one of their first acts would have to be extending or rescinding Article 50, delaying or even stopping Brexit when people want us to get on with it,” she said.

Reporting by Kylie MacLellan and Michael Holden; editing by Guy Faulconbridge

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