08:11 GMT +319 October 2019
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    Britain's Queen Elizabeth II delivers the Queen's Speech during the State Opening of Parliament in central London, on May 18, 2016

    Queen Agrees to Suspend Parliament In Brexit Dispute But Speaker Calls it 'Constitutional Outrage'

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    In June 2016 the people of Britain voted narrowly in favour of exiting the European Union. Since then Parliament has been deadlocked about how to carry out Brexit and Boris Johnson appears to have run out of patience.

    The Queen has granted Boris Johnson's request to suspend Parliament next month as the government seeks to stymie efforts to thwart a no-deal Brexit.

    Downing Street says the Queen's Speech will take place on 14 October, only two weeks before the Brexit deadline.

    Opposition leaders are up in arms as they say MPs would then have little time to pass laws which would prevent Mr Johnson taking Britain out of the EU on 31 October.

    The Speaker of Parliament, John Bercow said the move was a "constitutional outrage."

    He said: "However it is dressed up it is blindingly obvious that the purpose of prorogation now would be to stop Parliament debating Brexit and performing its duty."

    ​Mr Johnson said: "We need to get on with our domestic agenda and that is why we are announcing a Queen's Speech for 14 October."

    ​He denied MPs would not have time to debate alternatives.

    Mr Johnson said: "That is completely untrue. If you look at what we're doing, we're bring forward a new legislative programme. There will be ample time on both sides of that crucial 17 October (European Union leaders') summit, ample time in parliament for MPs to debate the EU, to debate Brexit and all the other issues, ample time." 

    Downing Street confirmed on Wednesday that Mr Johnson had spoken to the Queen to request an end to the current parliamentary session in the second week of September.​

    Shadow Home Secretary Dianne Abbott tweeted: "Boris Johnson is aiming for a coup against parliament. Against you the voters and your political representatives. For a disastrous No Deal where the only one to benefit is Trump."

    The news comes only hours after Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn met opposition leaders and they agreed a pact to thwart a no-deal Brexit.

    ​Mr Johnson has been accused by Parliamentarians of being anti-democratic but he is thought to be gambling on the public's appetite for Brexit to be delivered.

    Tory MP and prominent Remainer Dominic Grieve said it was "an outrageous act", and predicted: "This government will come down."

    The former Chancellor, Philip Hammond, also called it a "profoundly undemocratic" move.

    The Irish government has said its position has not changed.

    Irish finance minister Paschal Donohoe said a no-deal Brexit was not inevitable, adding: "With such a dynamic situation there are many many things that are possible between now and the end of October."

    The pound slumped against the dollar and the euro in early trading on Wednesday, 28 August, amid fears that Mr Johnson's move would make a no-deal Brexit more likely.

    The pound is now worth $1.2179, while one euro buys 91 pence.

    In a letter to Conservative MPs, Mr Johnson explained the reason he had decided to ask for a suspension of Parliament.

    He said the current parliamentary session had lasted for 340 days - much longer than is usual - and needed to be brought to a close so that "key Brexit legislation" could be introduced in a new session.

    Mr Johnson wrote: "I therefore intend to bring forward a new bold and ambitious domestic legislative agenda ​for the renewal of our country after Brexit....we will help the NHS, fight violent crime, invest in infrastructure and science and cut the cost of living."

    ​He said the government's number one priority was to introduce a Withdrawal Agreement Bill and "move at pace to secure its passage before 31 October."

    Mr Corbyn has claimed Britain would be left at the mercy of the United States and its President, Donald Trump, in the wake of a no-deal Brexit.

    The decision to suspend Parliament has met with a mixed reaction on social media, with Remainers claiming it was blocking democracy and supporters of Brexit seeing it as the only way of pushing through exit from the EU.

    Many people have urged the Queen - who is the ceremonial head of state in the United Kingdom, but has never refused the request of an elected prime minister - to say no to Mr Johnson's request.

    Tags:
    EU, Queen, Jeremy Corbyn, Boris Johnson, Brexit
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