Tuesday 11 June 2019 9:28 pm

Labour launches plan to make 'no deal' Brexit illegal

Labour are set to launch an audacious bid to make it illegal for the UK to leave the EU without a Brexit deal.

The party will force a vote in parliament on Wednesday afternoon to make it possible for MPs to introduce legislation on 25 June ruling out a ‘no deal’ Brexit.

The plan has the support of other opposition parties, including the SNP and Lib Dems, and also the Conservative MP Oliver Letwin.

The UK is set to leave the EU without a deal on 31 October, unless a new agreement can be reached, MPs pass the deal agreed by outgoing PM Theresa May, or Brussels grants another delay. 

Brexit has dominated the race to succeed May in Downing Street, with candidates such as Boris Johnson, Esther McVey and Andrea Leadsom vowing to take the UK out of the EU by that date with or without a deal. 

Michael Gove and Mark Harper are among those who believe another extension is necessary to renegotiate the terms of the UK’s departure. 

Another contender, Dominic Raab, has suggested he could effectively cancel parliament in the run up to 31 October to prevent MPs blocked a ‘no deal’ Brexit.

Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer said: “The debate on Brexit in the Tory leadership contest has descended into the disturbing, the ludicrous and the reckless.

“None of the likely candidates for the top job has a credible plan for how to break the deadlock before the end of October.

“Instead, we have witnessed candidates openly advocating a damaging no deal Brexit and even proposing dragging the Queen into politics by asking her to shut down Parliament to achieve this.

“MPs cannot be bystanders while the next Tory Prime Minister tries to crash the UK out of the European Union without a deal and without the consent of the British people.

“That’s why we are taking this latest measure to end the uncertainty and protect communities across the country. 

“My challenge to MPs who disagree either with a no deal Brexit or proroguing Parliament is to back this motion and act in the national interest.”