Scottish court rules UK PM`s suspension of parliament `unlawful`

The Brexit Party have vowed to help the Tories win an election

The Brexit Party have vowed to help the Tories win an election

The highest civil court in Scotland has ruled Boris Johnson's suspension of Parliament is unlawful, in the latest setback for the UK Prime Minister.

The decision by a three-judge panel on the Court of Session will not immediately force the government to allow lawmakers to reconvene - their suspension officially began on Tuesday, and they're not slated to meet again until October 14.

Parliament was prorogued, or suspended, on Monday until October 14, a move opponents argued was created to thwart their attempts to scrutinize his plans for leaving the European Union and allow him to push through a no-deal Brexit.

Last week, his government lost control of Parliament to an informal coalition of the main opposition and Conservative rebels, who then passed a bill on Monday to block a "no-deal" Brexit within the current deadline.

However, a government source told AFP that "nothing is changing" until the case was concluded.

A lawyer involved in the Scottish case against the government, Jolyon Maugham, tweeted that it would be considered in Britain's Supreme Court starting on Tuesday.

Judge Carloway said: "We are of the opinion that the advice given by the government to her majesty the Queen to prorogue parliament was unlawful and that the prorogation itself was unlawful".

The British government said it was disappointed by the decision and confirmed it would appeal to the Supreme Court. That contradicts the prime minister's stated motive for the move - that his new government needs the time to lay out its agenda in a speech in the middle of next month. "Proroguing Parliament is the legal and necessary way of delivering this", said a statement by 10 Downing Street.

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Last week, a court in Edinburgh rejected the lawmakers' challenge, saying it was a matter for politicians, not the courts, to decide.

Members of parliament passed legislation last week seeking to force Johnson to ask European Union leaders for an extension if no agreement is reached in hopes of averting what they see as disastrous effects of a so-called no-deal Brexit.

"I think that what I need to do, and what others need to do, is to get back to parliament and open those doors and get back in, and get Boris Johnson back in parliament so we can hold him properly to account".

Scotland's first minister, Scottish National Party (SNP) leader Nicola Sturgeon, echoed his call.

The Supreme Court is to consider United Kingdom ministers' appeal against the ruling.

Legal commentator David Allen Green suggested that the case was likely to fail when it reached the Supreme Court, pointing out that Scottish law was different from that of England and Wales.

He says he is working hard to agree new exit terms, after the deal negotiated by his predecessor Theresa May was rejected by MPs, despite European Union leaders insisting the current terms are the best on offer. Ardent anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller was unsuccessful in her attempt to overturn the prorogation of Parliament in an English court last week, but was granted permission to appeal to the UK Supreme Court on September 17.

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