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Johnson urges Brussels to drop its opposition to new Brexit deal

PA Wire

Boris Johnson has urged Brussels to rethink its opposition to negotiating a new agreement on the terms of Britain's withdrawal from the EU.

In his first statement to MPs as Prime Minister, Mr Johnson reaffirmed his determination to deliver Brexit by the October 31 deadline, warning of a "catastrophic" loss of confidence in the UK's democracy if they failed.

Mr Johnson, who entered the Commons chamber to cheers from Tory MPs, insisted that he wanted to take Britain out of the EU with a deal.

But he said Theresa May's deal had been rejected three times by the House and could not be brought back again.

"I would prefer us to leave the EU with a deal - I would much prefer it," he said.

"I believe that it is possible even at this late stage and I will work flat out to make it happen.

"But certain things need to be clear. The Withdrawal Agreement negotiated by my predecessor has been three times rejected by this House.

"Its terms are unacceptable to this Parliament and this country," he said.

He said that his new Government was ready to negotiate with Brussels in good faith.

"We will throw ourselves into these negotiations with the greatest energy and determination and in a spirit of friendship," he said.

But at the same time he promise to "turbocharge" preparations for a no-deal Brexit in the event that they were unable to come to an agreement with the EU.