Morning! I'm Iain McIver, SPICe's EU researcher. Some reflections on #euco decision to extend the #article50 #Brexit process last night. See #council conclusions for more details… 1/10
#euco met in its EU27 formation meaning the UK Government was not part of the decision-making process. Instead, the Prime Minister spoke to #euco ahead of its considerations. 2/10
The UK will not now leave the European Union on 12 April. Instead a flexible extension has been granted to 31 October. If the Withdrawal Agreement is ratified before then, the UK will leave the EU at the end of the month in which the Agreement is ratified. 3/10
However, there are conditions. The UK must participate in the European Parliament elections to be held on 23 May if it is still an EU member and has not ratified the Withdrawal Agreement by 22 May. Failure to participate would mean the UK would leave the EU on 1 June. 4/10
#euco has reiterated the Withdrawal Agreement will not be reopened. However, changes could be made to the Political Declaration on the Future Relationship. But concrete negotiations on the future relationship cannot take place whilst the UK remains a member. 5/10
The UK remains a member of EU with full rights and obligations until it leaves, and whilst a member is still free to revoke Article 50 if it wishes. 6/10
The UK should behave in a constructive and responsible manner throughout the extension in accordance with the duty of sincere cooperation. 7/10
#euco will continue to meet in its EU27 format to discuss #Brexit throughout the further extension. A review of the situation will be undertaken in June. 8/10
Crucially, last night’s decision does nothing to move the #Brexit process forward, instead it delays exit for a further six months. 9/10
Movement will require the UK Government to find an approach which commands a majority in the House of Commons. For more #Brexit analysis subscribe to the @SPICe_Research blog at 10/10
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