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Brexit: European Council adopts decision to extend the period under Article 50

The European Council has adopted a decision to extend the period under Article 50.3 (of the Treaty on the European Union), in the context of the UK's intention to withdraw from the EU.

The extension will last until 31 January 2020 to allow more time for the ratification of the withdrawal agreement. The withdrawal can take place earlier on 1 December 2019 or 1 January 2020, if the withdrawal agreement is ratified by both parties.

For the duration of the extension the United Kingdom remains a member state with all the rights and obligations set out in the treaties and under EU law.

The decision was taken unanimously by the European Council by written procedure, with the agreement of the UK. This agreement was set out in a letter from UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to President of the European Council Donald Tusk. The European Council also agreed a declaration accompanying the decision.

Press contacts

Preben Aamann

European Council President Spokesperson

+32 2 281 51 50
+32 476 85 05 43

Ester Arauzo-Azofra

Press officer

+32 2 281 53 61
+32 473 63 07 23


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