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The European Union agreed on Monday to extend the deadline for Britain to ratify an exit agreement until January 31, 2020, giving the United Kingdom three months to approve a deal for their withdrawal from the EU. In response, the House of Commons voted to hold a general election on December 12 to elect a new Parliament.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was obligated to seek an extension for the Brexit deadline by the Benn Act if Parliament did not agree to an exit agreement by October 19. Johnson failed to secure support for his negotiated deal after the Northern Irish Democratic Unionist Party and the opposition Labour Party refused to support it. The Prime Minister was then forced to send a letter to EU President Donald Tusk requesting an extension to the deadline. Tusk announced on Twitter Monday evening that the remaining member states of the EU had agreed to the requested three-month extension and the decision was formally published on Tuesday.
In response to his failure to secure passage of an exit agreement and the new deadline extension by the EU, Johnson proposed new Parliamentary elections Monday evening.