The Latest: Irish PM: No guarantee EU would grant extension

Fri, October 18, 2019 11:09 EDT

LONDON (AP) — The Latest on Brexit (all times local):

4:05 p.m.

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar has applied more pressure to British lawmakers to pass Boris Johnson's new Brexit deal, saying there is no guarantee European Union leaders would grant a further extension to the Oct. 31 deadline for Britain to leave the bloc.

Speaking after an EU summit in Brussels, Varadkar said that if the U.K. were to ask for more time, which could happen if British lawmakers reject Johnson's deal on Saturday, then European Council President Donald Tusk would put the request to all 27 EU leaders.

Varadkar says, "bear in mind that request would have to be agreed unanimously by all 27 leaders, so I don't think MPs voting tomorrow should make the assumption there would be unanimity for an extension."

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2:15 p.m.

French president Emmanuel Macron has expressed his hopes that the divorce deal between the European Union and the British government will be adopted by Oct. 31, the date Britain is scheduled to leave the bloc.

Speaking after a meeting of EU leaders in Brussels, Macron was asked whether he would support an extension to the deadline in case British lawmakers reject the deal this weekend.

Macron said "I wish that we can finish this off and speak about the future. The Oct. 31 date must be respected. I don't believe new delays should be granted."

If British lawmakers reject the deal agreed Thursday between Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the EU, a further extension to Britain's scheduled departure date is widely anticipated.

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10:25 a.m.

Organizers of a Dutch beach party to bid farewell to Britain as it leaves the European Union say the festivities will go ahead Oct. 31, the scheduled Brexit date.

The party started as a joke that went viral on Facebook about gathering on the beach to wave goodbye to the Brits. Now thousands of people are expected to attend what has morphed into a festival on the North Sea beach at the small town of Wijk aan Zee, near Amsterdam.

Spokeswoman Annemarie Smit said Friday organizers have gotten permission from the local municipality and "the party is going ahead whether Britain leaves or not."

At 2 p.m. on Oct. 31, partygoers will all wave across the North Sea.

Tickets cost 19.73 euros — reflecting the year Britain joined the forerunner of the European Union.

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9:05 a.m.

Official election results in Gibraltar, a speck of British territory on Spain's southern tip, show that an alliance of socialists and liberals has won a third consecutive term in government.

The GSLP Liberals won 52.5% of the vote, with the two main opposition parties, GSD and Together Gibraltar, receiving 25.6% and 20.5% respectively.

Fabian Picardo is set to be confirmed as Chief Minister on Friday morning. He faces the challenge of dealing with the effects of the United Kingdom's departure from the European Union.

A Brexit deal brokered Thursday with the bloc needs to be adopted by the U.K. parliament.

Gibraltar's 34,000 residents overwhelmingly rejected leaving the EU and are bracing to be hit hard by it. The Rock relies heavily on workers who cross the border from Spain, and its companies need access to the EU market.

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9 a.m.

After winning the support of European Union leaders for his new Brexit deal , Prime Minister Boris Johnson is back in London to try to secure backing from the fractious British Parliament.

Johnson returned overnight for what is expected to be a busy Friday attempting to persuade lawmakers to vote for the divorce deal.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was up early drumming up support.

He told the BBC: "We've got a real opportunity now to get Brexit delivered faithful to the referendum, move on as a Government, and I think as a country, and lift the clouds of Brexit."

Raab says the government has not given up hope of winning the support of its Northern Ireland ally the Democratic Unionist Party, which has rejected the new deal.

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