Brexit ‘could be delayed until end of 2019’

London, Aug 14 (IANS) Britain could remain in the European Union until the end of 2019, almost a year longer than anticipated by the British government, the media reported.

The Theresa May-led Conservative government is preparing to invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which provides a two-year period to negotiate cutting off ties with Brussels, Efe news reported.

London has publicly stated that it had no intention of beginning this process until the end of this year or the beginning of 2017, which would fix the date for Brexit at sometime in the beginning of 2019.

However, The Sunday Times in an editorial claimed that some key ministers had communicated to London that they were not ready to begin the negotiations on the scheduled dates.

The newspaper referred to the difficulties in the Brexit team — a special group made by May to negotiate with Brussels — as it is led by the eurosceptic David Davis.

London could delay invoking article 50 until the results of the forthcoming general elections in France, in May next year, and Germany, in September 2017.

In this regard, European Parliament member Nigel Farage, the former leader of the eurosceptic UKIP party, has claimed that the lack of progress could paralyse decision making on immigration, one of the key issues brought forward by Brexit.

He also warned of the danger of thousands of youths getting radicalised and joining extremist organisations if they realised that the government was ignoring the decision taken in the referendum.

However, a spokesperson of the Prime Minister said May had made it clear that her government’s priority was to respect the decision made by the voters and ensure the success of the Brexit.

–IANS

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