Alwaght- Three years after the Britons voted to exit from the European Union, Brexit remains the main political issue and an origin of crisis in the Island. The British parliament voted no to a deal that was reached between Prime Minister Theresa May and the EU. The rejection brought down May who was replaced by Boris Johnson of the Conservative Party’s hardline circle. Now the Queen has prorogued the parliament at the behest of PM Johnson, unleashing a new wave of confusion about the fate of the county after exit from the European bloc.
Britain is currently a setting to uproar and protests and media have published reports from demonstrations across the country, calling the decision to suspend the parliament a “coup.” An online petition objecting to parliament suspension has now received over 1.4 million signatures.
Why was the parliament prorogued?
Based on a timetable set to London by Brussels, October 31 will mark the end of the last chance of Britain to either approve the reached exit deal or concede to a no-deal exit. Meanwhile, the new prime minister, who ostensibly expressed interest to leave the EU with a new deal, is one of the main supporters of the no-deal withdrawal. He warned that if no agreement is reached until October 31, the exit process with not be delayed.
But the opposition leaders, finding such a quitting economically and even politically disastrous to Britain, on Tuesday, a day after the call for the suspension of the parliament and the queen agreement, announced that they will mobilize their efforts to focus on passing a bill blocking a no-deal exit. Jeremy Corbyn, the Labor Party leader, on Tuesday, hosted a meeting with National Party of Scotland, Liberal Democrats party, Green Party, and UK Independent Party to discuss change of tactics to block a no-deal exit. After the gathering, the Labor stated that the participants agreed on cooperation to find practical ways to prevent an exit without a deal with the EU including approving a bill and even pushing for a no-confidence vote. The point of danger for the PM is that even some of his fellow party members have voiced readiness for cooperation with the no-vote motion by the opposition.
The government in reaction said that it will limit the parliament workdays so that the opponents will have not enough time for such actions. The parliament is now set to be shut down from next week to mid-October, namely only two weeks before the EU deadline. The cabinet believes that the EU will yield to Boris Johnson’s demand for alterations to Brexit deal only when it makes sure that the parliament cannot block a no-deal exit.
The move aroused the ire of other parties. Jeremy Corbyn has called parliament suspension unacceptable and suggested that Johnson’s move marked a fatal blow to democracy only to pave the way for a no-deal exit. Jo Swinson, leader of Liberal Democrats, has vowed to block abandoning the EU without a deal. Moreover, Scotland Conservative Party’s leader Ruth Davidson a day after the suspension decision resigned. He is a supporter of Britain’s stay.
Parliament suspension: Democracy or coup?
The Queen’s decision to affirmatively respond to Jonson’s demand to suspend the parliament has stirred massive demonstrations by those who call the move a coup of the royalty against the democracy symbol. According to a Guardian’s poll, only 27 percent are in favor of the move and the opponents find it against democracy and a coup against the public will.
Although it seems that the monarchs has no other way than agreeing with Johnson’s demand, the critics argue that rapid affirmative response by the Queen was meant to block efforts by the opposition to pass a bill against non-deal pullout.
On Thursday, Kate Osamor, a member of parliament from the Labor, in a Twitter post said that monarchy could be abolished after the Queen approved the suspension. She tweeted: “The Queen did not save us” in a hint to the royal anthem “God save the Queen.” She further tweeted: “The Queen should look at what happened to her cousin Tino ex King of Greece when you enable a right wing coup! Monarchy abolished!” Tino ruled over Greece between 1965 and 1973 and was dethroned by a coup government he supported.
Additionally, Green Party accused the PM of flouting democracy and called for the Queen’s stance against him. The party stated that she avoids to take political stances ordinarily but the decision to shut down the parliament is cooperation with a particular political position that was not raised in elections and so cannot reflect the will of the voters. Angela Rayner, MP and shadow education minister, in a Twitter message wrote that this decision was a clear violation of the basic rights. King Charles I of England, she said did this so regularly, and now a PM who did not get the post directly through elections has done similarly for specific goals. King Charles’ decision to shut down the parliament in the mid-1600s led to civil war, collapse and execution of him, and a decade-long “dictatorship” rule of the Puritans over England.
But while the opposition is focusing on support for democracy and the parliament, the experts find the risks to the British unity the bigger danger of “hard Brexit.” After all, just unlike the English, the people of Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland are against the exit.