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Decision to suspend UK parliament was ‘unlawful’: Supreme Court

Protesters calling for parliament to be recalled hold up placards outside the Supreme court in central London on September 24, 2019 as judges delivered their judgement on the legality of Boris Johnson’s advice to the Queen to prorogue, or suspend, parliament for more than a month. Photo: Tolga AKMEN / AFP

London, United Kingdom, Sep 24 – Britain’s Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled “unlawful” a decision by Prime Minister Boris Johnson to suspend parliament in the run-up to Brexit, saying it was “void and of no effect”.

“The court is bound to conclude… that the decision to advise Her Majesty to prorogue parliament was unlawful,” Supreme Court head Brenda Hale said in the ruling.

The Supreme Court said that parliamentarians could reconvene “as soon as possible” after ruling that a decision by Johnson to suspend parliament was unlawful.

“It is for parliament, and in particular the Speaker and the Lord Speaker, to decide what to do next. Unless there is some parliamentary rule of which we are unaware, they can take immediate steps to enable each House to meet,” the ruling said.

House of Commons speaker John Bercow on Tuesday said parliament must “convene without delay” after the Supreme Court ruled that Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend it earlier this month was unlawful.

Bercow, who has been highly critical of Johnson’s decision, said he would be consulting party leaders “as a matter of urgency”.

Britain’s main opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn called Johnson to resign as prime minister and call an early election after the Supreme Court ruled his suspension of parliament “unlawful”.

“I invite Boris Johnson… to consider his position, and become the shortest serving prime minister there has ever been,” Corbyn told Labour’s party conference, calling on the Conservative party leader to “have an election to elect a government that respects democracy”.


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