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    A journalist poses with a copy of the Brexit Article 50 bill, introduced by the government to seek parliamentary approval to start the process of leaving the European Union, in front of the Houses of Parliament in London, Britain, January 26, 2017.

    Scottish, Welsh Gov'ts Say Cannot Recommend Legislative Consent to Brexit Bill

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    The Scottish and Welsh governments "cannot recommend" the legislative consent to UK government's EU withdrawal bill, unless the changes, required by the devolved governments, are made, First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon and First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones said in a joint statement on Thursday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, the UK government published the repeal bill, formally known as the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill. The bill will repeal the 1972 European Communities Act, which formalized the United Kingdom's membership of the European Union, and will detail how EU law could be transferred into the UK legislation after Brexit.

    "The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill does not return powers from the EU to the devolved administrations, as promised. It returns them solely to the UK Government and Parliament, and imposes new restrictions on the Scottish Parliament and National Assembly for Wales. On that basis, the Scottish and Welsh Governments cannot recommend that legislative consent is given to the Bill as it currently stands," the joint statement read.

    The ministers explained that the bill undermined founding principles of devolution and could destabilize economies of the states.

    "Our two governments – and the UK government – agree we need a functioning set of laws across the UK after withdrawal from the EU. We also recognise that common frameworks to replace EU laws across the UK may be needed in some areas. But the way to achieve these aims is through negotiation and agreement, not imposition. It must be done in a way which respects the hard-won devolution settlements," the statement read, adding the governments remained opened to further discussions.

    In late March, the United Kingdom officially launched the EU withdrawal process. The Brexit negotiations between London and Brussels, which officially started on June 19, are expected to conclude by the end of March 2019.

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