UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson appeared to try to undermine his own request for a Brexit extension on Saturday, but the European Commission is still considering his application for a delay.
The fact that Johnson did not sign the letter requesting an extension “does not change anything” when it comes to the European Union deciding on that request, European Commission chief spokeswoman Mina Andreeva told journalists in Brussels on Monday.
“We have taken note of the House of Commons vote on Saturday and the request to extend Article 50 until the 31st January 2020. President Tusk is now consulting leaders of the EU27 on this. And, it is first and foremost for the UK to explain the next steps. We from our side will of course follow all the events in London this week very closely,” Andreeva said.
She added that the ratification process of the deal negotiated by Johnson has been launched on the EU side, and that the bloc’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier will debrief the EU Parliament’s Brexit Steering Group in Strasbourg on Monday afternoon.
Earlier: Johnson sent three letters to the European Union on Saturday, it included an unsigned letter with the exact wording in the Benn Act (the legislation that obliged Johnson to request a Brexit delay); and a personal letter from Johnson saying that a further delay would be “corrosive.”