Boris Johnson will write a letter to the EU asking for a delay to Brexit beyond 31 October if he fails to get an exit deal approved by parliament by Saturday, the Brexit secretary has confirmed.
Stephen Barclay told a committee of MPs on Wednesday that the prime minister will “comply” with legislation, aimed at blocking a no-deal Brexit at the end of the month, passed by opposition MPs last month.
This law compels Mr Johnson to ask for a three-month extension to the Article 50 negotiating period, to 31 January 2020, if MPs have not approved a Brexit deal – or explicitly authorised a no-deal Brexit – by 19 October.
Earlier this month, it was revealed government documents submitted to a court stated the prime minister “will send a letter… no later than 19 October” to the EU asking for a Brexit delay.
Mr Johnson has repeatedly promised to take the UK out of the EU on 31 October, with or without a deal.