Court Rules ‘Brexit’ Can’t Happen Without Parliamentary Approval

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Jacob Bojesson Foreign Correspondent
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The British government can not begin exit negotiations with the European Union without approval from the parliament, the High Court ruled Thursday.

Prime Minister Theresa May was set to trigger Article 50 in early 2017 to begin the process of leaving EU. The High Court ruling comes after a group of citizens challenged the constitutionality of not including the parliament in the process.

“We decide that the government does not have the power under the Crown’s prerogative to give notice pursuant to Article 50 for the U.K. to withdraw from the European Union,” the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, the United Kingdom’s most senior judge, said in a summary of the ruling.

A spokesman from May’s office said the government has no intention of letting the judgement “derail Article 50 or the timetable we have set out.”

“We are determined to continue with our plan,” the spokesman said in a statement.

An appeals hearing is expected to start in December.

A majority of MPs campaigned for the country to remain in the EU prior to the June referendum, but the ruling is not expected to stop Brexit from happening.

“Ultimately, the British people voted for a departure but not for a destination, which is why what really matters is allowing them to vote again on the final deal, giving them the chance to say no to an irresponsible ‘hard Brexit’ that risks our economy and our jobs,” Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron told BBC.

The Parliament will still be able to gain more influence on exit negotiations and what kind of relationship the U.K. will have with the EU in the future.

“There will be numerous opportunities for the House to examine and discuss what the government is negotiating,” International Trade Secretary Liam Fox said of the ruling.

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