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Iran Press TV

Cancelling Brexit will have 'devastating' social consequences, Hunt says

Iran Press TV

Wed Jan 2, 2019 01:42PM

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt has warned that if the government cancels results of a June 2016 referendum in which Britons decided for their country to leave the European Union, it would have harsh impacts on the United Kingdom's social fabric.

Speaking in Singapore during a question-and-answer session on Wednesday, Hunt said that social consequences of not leaving the EU would be "devastating."

The comments come as some believe if the British parliament rejects a divorce deal signed between Prime Minister Theresa May and the EU, Britain could opt to cancel Brexit altogether and call a fresh referendum that would allow the country to remain in the bloc.

However, May and other senior government officials have rejected the possibility for a second referendum on Brexit, saying it would be highly controversial and further divide the nation along political lines.

Hunt reiterated that a second vote on Brexit or a vote on May's own Brexit agreement would be damaging to the British democracy.

The top British diplomat expressed hope that May would find a way to get her Brexit deal approved by the British parliament, adding that the premier would manage to convince the lawmakers in the House of Commons that a clause in the Brexit deal dedicated to the Irish border would not leave the UK in the EU's customs union forever.

"When Theresa May comes back with those reassurances that she has been seeking from the EU that the deal that is on the table is not going to lead to us being permanently trapped in the customs union ... she will find a way to get this deal through parliament," said Hunt.

May delayed an original vote in the Commons on her Brexit deal in early December. She has indicated that if the parliament finally rejects the deal in mid-January, Britain will have no option but to leave the EU on March 29, 2019 in a disorderly manner.

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