EU chief’s warning as union rubber stamps Brexit extension

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The latest Brexit delay to 31 January 2020 “may be the last one”, an outgoing EU chief has warned.

Donald Tusk, who is stepping down as EU Council president at the end of November, intervened as MPs appear close to agreeing a pre-Christmas election.

“Please make the best use of this time,” he tweeted on Tuesday afternoon.

Boris Johnson has urged MPs not to repeat Saturday's Commons vote for a further delay
Image: MPs appear close to backing a pre-Christmas poll

“I also want to say goodbye to you as my mission here is coming to an end,” the former Polish prime minister wrote in a message addressed “to my British friends”.

“I will keep my fingers crossed for you.”

He added the formal decision to offer a three-month delay to avoid no-deal had been rubber stamped.

Mr Tusk has been a major figure in the Brexit negotiations, in charge of convening all major summits of EU leaders to sign off on delays requested by Britain and the deals secured with Theresa May and Boris Johnson.

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His message echoes a similar theme from April, when a Brexit delay until 31 October was handed down from Brussels.

“Please do not waste this time,” he implored.

Britain's Brexit paralysis served as a "vaccine" against the eurosceptic vote in the EU's parliamentary elections, European Council President Donald Tusk has said.
EU Council president: Brexit a ‘vaccine’ against EU scepticism

Jean-Claude Juncker, his EU Commission counterpart, recently claimed that Brexit had been “a waste of time and a waste of energy”.

Parliament is due to vote for the fourth time on Tuesday on holding a general election before the end of the year.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has tried unsuccessfully three times to get a snap poll, but has fallen far short of the two-thirds support in the Commons he needed.

He is trying a different approach which only needs a simple majority to pass, and if it does Britons would head to the polls on Thursday 12 December.

Labour, the Liberal Democrats and Scottish National Party have said they support a pre-Christmas election because the imminent threat of no-deal has been pushed into the new year.

EU’s Donald Tusk tells Britain latest Brexit delay ‘may be the last one’

Political reporter @breeallegretti The latest Brexit delay to 31 January 2020 “may be the last one”, an outgoing EU chief has warned. Donald Tusk, who is stepping down as EU Council President at the end of November, intervened as MPs appear close to agreeing a pre-Christmas election.

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