Brexit: after the second rejection of the agreement, Theresa May raises an ultimatum to deputies

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To rally rebel elected officials, the prime minister threatens to postpone indefinitely the exit of the European Union. A third vote will be scheduled, while the Conservatives are tearing themselves apart.

British Prime Minister Theresa May in the House of Commons in London during the 13 Brexit debate. JESSICA TAYLOR / UK PARLIAMENT / REUTERS

British Prime Minister Theresa May has lost her voice, but certainly not her stubbornness. And this one may be paying. Admittedly, it suffered yet another masterful setback, Tuesday 12 March, when the Brexit agreement it concluded with the European Union (EU) was rejected for the second time by the deputies. Admittedly, she once again had an unpleasant evening, Wednesday, March 13, still in Parliament, when several of her ministers defied the instructions of the Conservative Party she leads and therefore her own authority, to vote an amendment excluding an exit of the Without agreement ("No deal"), even after the target date of 29 March.

But its strategy of gradually rallying rebel deputies by threatening to put off a Brexit they promised to their constituents could pay off.

A third vote on "Deal" with Brussels will be scheduled by Wednesday 20 March, she announced Wednesday night. If necessary, a fourth before the fateful expiry of the 29. And under the pressure of the watch and with tenacity, Theresa May could achieve her goals: finally get the parliamentary ratification of the treaty sealing the Brexit.

In mid-February, a private conversation held by the British chief negotiator Olly Robbins at the bar of a hotel in Brussels, and picked up by a journalist from ITV, revealed this strategy that Theresa May seemed to validate Wednesday night in the House of Commons. As promised, she will submit, on Thursday 14 March, to the members a motion providing for a postponement of the deadline of 29 march. But this is an ultimatum.

This article was originally published on https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2019/03/14/brexit-apres-the-second-reject-of-the-accord-theresa-may-pose-un -ultimatum-to-deputes_5435685_3210.html