Tuesday 25 June 2019 5:01 pm

Boris Johnson challenges Jeremy Hunt to commit to 31 October Brexit date

Boris Johnson has challenged his leadership rival Jeremy Hunt to commit to bringing the UK out of the EU on 31 October – regardless of whether a deal has been agreed.

In a letter published on his Twitter feed, Johnson argues Brexit must take place by the end of the extension period – or the Conservative party will “kick the bucket”.

The former foreign secretary challenges his successor at the foreign office to set out what concessions he would be willing make to secure another extension if a new Brexit deal cannot be agreed by 31 October.

Hunt hit back by mocking Johnson’s decision to duck a Sky News debate scheduled for this evening – complete with the hashtag #BoJoNoShow

In his letter, Johnson said: “For my part, I have been clear that, if I am elected leader, we will leave on 31 October with or without a deal. 

“Will you join me in this commitment to leave on 31 October come what may?”

He added: “In short, this is about whether the original people’s vote will be respected. You are seeking to become Prime Minister, and people deserve to know where you stand.” 

Hunt responded on Twitter: “Hi Boris, it’s good to talk. But no need for snail-mail, why not turn up to Sky tonight and I’ll give you full and frank answers?”

The foreign secretary has previously said he wanted to renegotiate the Brexit deal secured by Theresa May, but if there was no prospect of a new agreement by 31 October he would take the UK out of the EU without a deal.