May Triggers Article 50
Prime minister Theresa May has signed the documents which will start Britain’s departure from the European Union.
The papers, which will trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty of the European Union, will officially begin negotiations for the withdrawal of the country from the EU.
It comes 9 months after the British public voted leave, in the June 6th referendum.
Something which some of the general public feel is a bit too long.
The letter will now be personally transported by Britain’s EU ambassador Tim Barrow to Council President Donald Tusk. It is expected to arrive in Brussels, Belgium at 12:20 BST.
Speaking to the house of commons, Mrs May told MP’s that “In accordance with the wishes of the British people, the United Kingdom is leaving the European Union.” She then exclaimed that “This is an historic moment from which there can be no turning back”.
What will happen now?
Once the letter has officially been handed over to Mr Tusk, the UK will begin talks about an amicable split between themselves and the EU.
Talks are set to take two years before a separation can be confirmed. With the United Kingdom having to forge many new deals with the EU in order to compete in the economy.
Meetings will mainly prioritise on creating: new trade deals, a fee to leave the EU, a transitional arrangement and the safety of both Brits living abroad and immigrants living in the UK.
Mrs May has called for unity between the population of the UK, saying that she wants to “emerge from this period of change stronger, fairer and more united.”
Are Scotland off?
It is now expected that Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will ask for another independence referendum.
Scotland, who voted to remain part of the UK in 2014, were overwhelmingly in favour of continuing to be a part of the EU.
In June’s EU vote the country voted 62% to remain, with all 32 council areas backing a remain stance.
Mrs May has already ruled out another ballot vote, whilst reprimanding Mrs Sturgeon and telling her that “politics is not a game’.
However, given the Scottish publics views on the EU, it may be hard to deny the country another trip to the ballot box.