Greens welcome EU Parliament support for Article 50 extension to avoid No Deal Exit

Next Wednesday the European Parliament will debate the ‘state of play of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union’ and vote on a resolution. Commenting on a draft resolution published today, Molly, who is head of the UK delegation of Green MEPs, said:

“This resolution makes clear that any crash out Brexit would be entirely the responsibility of the UK Government, noting that this is seen as the ‘optimal outcome’ by some members of the Tory government.

“By contrast, the EU wants to help the UK avoid such a disastrous scenario through an extension of Article 50. In this, the EU shows it has more concern for UK citizens than our own government does.

“In a strong stance, MEPs are being asked to agree that averting no deal is sufficient reason to allow an extension, demonstrating again the greater willingness of the European Parliament to play a conciliatory role than was demonstrated by some Council members in April.

“Parliament continues to champion citizens’ rights, with concerns expressed over ending free movement after the 31st October and the implementation of the UK’s Settlement Scheme. This has created huge uncertainty and stress for many thousands of EU citizens living in the UK. Greens continue to support the ring-fencing of citizens’ rights so that none of the five million EU citizens living outside their country of birth will be faced with continuing uncertainty.

“We also welcome the call for an equal playing field on environmental standards, employment rights and consumer protections and a demand that MEPs refuse to ratify any future trade deal between the EU and the UK unless there are these guarantees. This will stop the UK engaging in a race to the bottom and from becoming a tax haven, sweatshop or dirty man of Europe once again.”