With 3 Million Signatures, Some Britons Clamor to Cancel Brexit – The New York Times

The petition has been online since last month, and it initially struggled to gain attention. “I nearly gave up, but then I contacted a lot of people and it took off,” she added.

Such petitions going viral have prompted responses from lawmakers, and gathering 100,000 signatures makes a petition eligible for debate in Parliament. In the past two years, Parliament has debated 55 of them, on topics like the sale of fireworks and the country’s health service.

On Monday, the House of Commons debated a petition to “Ban all ISIS members from returning to the UK, remove their citizenship and passports,” which had gathered more than 600,000 signatures. It appeared to have been inspired by cases like that of Shamima Begum, a 19-year-old Briton who had joined the Islamic State in Syria and married a Dutch fighter for group, but has pleaded to be allowed to return home.

The British government has revoked her citizenship, an action that could face a legal challenge.

Any citizen or resident of Britain can start or sign a petition to Parliament. Once it gets the support of five people, in addition to its creator, it appears online and remains on the website for six months.

Nine debates have been held on topics related to Brexit because of such petitions. On Monday, for example, lawmakers discussed a call to cancel Brexit in the absence of a deal. In February, they debated a petition demanding that Brexit must not be stopped “under any circumstances.

Neither debate appeared to have changed the course of Brexit. Still, people were still signing on Friday.


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