Britain’s newly-elected parliament today gave its initial backing to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Brexit divorce deal with the European Union.
Following a thumping general election win for Johnson’s Conservatives in last week’s snap general election called to clear the Brexit impasse, MPs voted by 358 to 234 to clear the Withdrawal Agreement Bill through its first hurdle in the House of Commons.
The bill would also ban an extension of the transition period – during which the UK is out of the EU but follows many of its rules – past 2020.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn told his MPs to vote against it, saying there was a better and fairer way to leave the EU.
MPs are now voting on the program motion, which sets out the timetable for further debate on the bill over three days – 7th, 8th and 9th January.
The government says it will get the bill into law in time for the 31 January Brexit deadline.