Brexit in peril if May's deal is rejected, UK foreign minister warns
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British foreign minister Jeremy Hunt warned on Sunday that Brexit is in peril if British Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal is rejected.

He said that there was momentum behind a move to stop Britain leaving the European Union and Brexit could be reversed unless lawmakers backed the government's exit deal on Tuesday.

"We have an opportunity now to leave on March 29 or shortly thereafter and it's important we grasp that opportunity because there is wind in the sails of people trying to stop Brexit," Hunt told the BBC.

"If you want to stop Brexit you only need to do three things: kill this deal, get an extension, and then have a second referendum. Within three weeks those people could have two of those three things ... and quite possibly the third one could be on the way."

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Brexit: what happens next?

'Just one more push': May urges EU to break Brexit deadlock

Facing the deadlock, Health Minister Matt Hancock also warned that the country will face "total uncertainty" if lawmakers reject May's Brexit deal, adding that he did not think a defeat was inevitable.

"In the event of this vote on Tuesday not going through, nobody knows what would happen. In everything that followed there would be total uncertainty - that would be the only certainty," Hancock told Sky News.

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) deputy leader Nigel Dodds speaking during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons in London, January 30, 2019. /VCG Photo

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) deputy leader Nigel Dodds speaking during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons in London, January 30, 2019. /VCG Photo

Meanwhile, the leaders of two major Eurosceptic factions in parliament said Sunday that May's Brexit deal will face a heavy defeat in parliament on Tuesday because she has so far secured no major changes from the European Union.

"An unchanged withdrawal agreement will be defeated firmly by a sizeable proportion of Conservatives and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) if it is again presented to the Commons," deputy DUP leader Nigel Dodds and Conservative party's leading Eurosceptic Steve Baker wrote in the Sunday Telegraph.

Labour Party still remains divided

On the other hand, British Opposition Labour Party is still unable to reach a consensus on Brexit, as finance policy chief John McDonnell said Sunday the party  could agree on an alternative Brexit deal with the European Union within a matter of weeks, contradictory to Brexit spokesman Keir Starmer's earlier statement which claimed to support staying in the EU if there is a second referendum.

"We could agree ... Labour's deal within a matter of weeks; the European Union has looked positively on that. In all the discussions we've had they see that as the foundation of a proper negotiation," McDonnell told the BBC.

Labour MPs hold placards as they demonstrate against Brexit outside Portcullis House in London, England, March 5, 2019. /VCG Photo

Labour MPs hold placards as they demonstrate against Brexit outside Portcullis House in London, England, March 5, 2019. /VCG Photo

Earlier on Sunday, Starmer told Sky News that "remain" is supposed to be the "default option" if there's a public vote.

On Tuesday, parliament is going to vote on May's Brexit deal. It rejected the deal by 230 votes on January 15, prompting the British leader to return to Brussels in search of changes to address the Irish backstop – an insurance policy designed to prevent the return of a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

(Cover: British Prime Minister Theresa May delivers a speech in Grimsby, England, March 8, 2019. /VCG Photo)

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Source(s): Reuters