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Fri, 29 May 2020

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Dozens of MPs demonstrate outside Parliament calling for its suspension to be ended after court victory

Dozens of MPs demonstrate outside Parliament calling for its suspension to be ended after court victory
2 min read

Dozens of MPs formed a cross-party group to demonstrate outside Parliament after a court ruled Boris Johnson’s decision to prorogue it was unlawful.

They called for the five-week suspension of sitting to be lifted “to hold this Government to account” over Brexit, with just 50 days until the Article 50 deadline.

It comes after the Court of Session in Scotland deemed the decision to shutter the House of Commons from Monday until October 14 was "improper" and a "tactic to frustrate Parliament".

The Government is lodging an appeal which will be heard by the Supreme Court, but opposition parties have all called for the chamber to be re-opened for business.

This afternoon’s protest was led by Labour MP Stephen Doughty, who told reporters at St Stephen’s Gate he and his colleagues should be allowed to go back to work as soon as possible.

He added: “It’s well worth remembering not only have we seen this judgment that the Government acted unlawfully, we have had Number 10 briefing against the judges, against the independent judiciary.

“Which is an extraordinary situation and absolutely to be condemned the same week they have politicised the police, shut parliament and found to have acted unlawfully.”

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson accused Boris Johnson of trying to “evade scrutiny” and “force the country into a disastrous no-deal Brexit”.

She said: "This is really unprecedented, what is happening to our democracy, and it's no surprise that we have had thousands of people on the streets protesting to defend our democracy.

"It's positive that the court has ruled today that this was unlawful.”

Ms Swinson also criticised comments from Downing Street focusing on the judges sitting in Edinburgh, saying: "I think it's appalling that they say that.

“We have an independent judiciary which is one of the pillars of our justice and legal system. That's hugely important."

And the SNP’s Kirsty Blackman said her party was “ready and waiting for Parliament to sit”, while Labour MP Rosie Duffield said: “We should be in that chamber, its where the public expect us to be.

“It’s the seat of British democracy and we are being blocked from being in there, and instead the Government are spending taxpayers money on taking themselves essentially to court.”

Read the most recent article written by Alain Tolhurst - Boris Johnson orders review of two-metre social distancing rule to help pubs re-open

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