MPs stage protest during stormy ceremony to suspend Parliament for five weeks


One of the longest sessions in the history of the British Parliament ended early Tuesday morning in extraordinary scenes, with protests from placard-waving lawmakers and attempts to prevent the Speaker of the House from leaving his chair.

If they did not he announced he would stand down on October 31 - the date Britain is supposed to leave the EU.

Lloyd Russell-Moyle MP appeared to be holding on to the Speaker of the House when he was requested to lead MPs to the House of Lords.

Writing in the Independent, Mr Lewis, MP for Norwich South, said he and colleagues had taken "peaceful, direct action, symbolically flanking the Speaker, to say we will not be silenced, and that we will stand up for the democratic freedoms and sovereignty of our Parliament". He says he is simply fulfilling his role of letting Parliament have its say.

He also said it would be better than after a general election, when new MPs may come under party influence in their choice of the next speaker.

Mr Bercow has been Speaker for more than 10 years and has been accused on several occasions of using his position to block the Government's Brexit plans.

More news: Paul Pogba could be set for long future at Manchester United
More news: Mugabe's body believed to be leaving Singapore for Zimbabwe
More news: Hong Kong tells US to stay out; students form protest chains

It all ended around 2 a.m. (9 p.m. ET) when opposition lawmakers lined up to shake the Speaker's hand, capping off an acrimonious day in Parliament. "Our democracy is the stronger for your being the Speaker", Mr Corbyn said. His hilarious interventions have made the last three years not only bearable but frankly enjoyable.

The new Act will legally require the government to write to the European Union and request a Brexit extension beyond Halloween if the Prime Minister can not get Parliament to agree by October 19.

He has also been praised for his handling of debates by many, including Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. "He's not a tall man, but he has this enormous voice that projects at all the MPs and the whole of the rest of the world finds this quite transfixing I think".

Mr Bercow received a standing ovation from the Labour benches when he announced his departure, but many Tories stayed in their seat.

The Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 introduced fixed-term elections to the Westminster parliament for the first time, as a result of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition agreement which was produced after the 2010 general election.