BRUSSELS is ready to sign of a three month Brexit extension with the option of leaving by November 30 if a deal is approved by MPs.
The UK would be granted a delay until January 31, according to a leaked draft of a proposals being considered by EU ambassadors on Monday morning.
Any postponement to Brexit can only be granted unanimously by the EUs 27 member states.
Over the weekend, EU Council chief Donald Tusk has been in intensive discussions with leaders.
Should all the ambassadors agree, there will be a short period – less than 24 hours and possibly as little as several hours – during which national capitals could still object.
If no issues are raised, the decision will take effect
Germanyhad argued strongly in favour of the January 31 date, saying to choose any other would plunge the EU into the UK’s internal political debate.
France had been holding out for a much shorter extension of just a few weeks to try and force a resolution to the deadlock.
Paris feared a three-month delay would take the pressure off MPs to back the deal – and that they would squander the time by also refusing an election.
French president Emmanuel Macron has be reportedly now come round to the idea of an extension, particularly after he is more convinced a General Election will take place in December.
Boris Johnson has already had two requests for an election refused and is likely to lose a third due to take place in a bid to have a December 12 ballot.
But Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson and the SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford have put forward a tightly-drafted Bill that would grant an election on December 9 as long as the European Union grant an extension until January 31.
EU supporters outside Parliament as MPs voted on Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal