Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty allows a country to exit the European Union, but it is so complicated that it will never be invoked by Britain, according to a leading expert.
Professor Thom Brookes, who is head of Law at the University of Durham and who advised on the wording of June’s referendum question, was quoted by the Independent as saying: “I don’t think Article 50 will be invoked”.
“The closer the government looks at what is actually involved in leaving then the less likely they are going to be jumping ship,” he was quoted as saying by the Independent. “There is a 42 year evolving legal relationship that is not so easy to unpick. It is an absolutely massive task.”
He also dismissed Theresa May’s talk of “Brexit as “Gobbledygook” and predicted Brexit ministers would U-turn on their commitment to leave the EU and call for a second referendum in due course.
Speaking to The Independent, Prof Brooks said he believed a hasty Brexit could “let down the next generation”.
“I expect May will have Boris and other Brexiteers submit a plan for a second referendum,” he added. “This will be presented as the government’s best efforts to honour the previous referendum result – however far short it may fall of Britain leaving the EU altogether.”
“This second referendum will either see Britain changing its mind on Brexit or voting for something other than a full withdrawal.”
According to the Independent, government officials have dismissed Brooks’ predictions and insist Article 50 will be invoked as planned.