Prime Minister Boris Johnson finally released the nation from the Brussels bloc on January 31 after years of fierce fighting and political stalemate on Brexit’s next steps in Britain. Although the process is far from over, with the UK currently in a transitional period, Johnson has remained rebellious and Brexit will continue to happen despite a global coronavirus pandemic. But what key moment prompted Britain to finally take its path to freedom?
Here Express.co.uk outlines five important moments in history that could have brought 17.4 million people to support Brexit and will now let you decide.
The signing of the Maastricht Treaty in February 1992 is said to have sown the seeds of discontent that led to Brexit.
Former Prime Minister Tory, John Major, was behind the signing of the Maastricht Treaty, a key step in the evolution of the EU.
It deepened integration between Member States by strengthening economic and political union and paved the way for the euro.
The treaty, which significantly increased the powers of the European Commission, was largely unpopular according to opinion polls and is what has probably divided the conservative party on the European question for decades.
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Brexit News: Express.co.uk is asking you what key event led to Brexit?
Sir John decided to ignore them and signed it in 1992.
During a speech in Brussels, the politician born in Bristol expressed his desire to place “Great Britain at the center of Europe” with the Maastricht Treaty.
The treaty is the international agreement that saw what was then the EEC evolve into the EU with initially only 12 Member States.
Meanwhile, some argue that the political ramifications of Black Wednesday in September 1992 brought the United Kingdom on the road to Brexit.
Black Wednesday took place on September 16, 1992, when the government of mr. Major was forced to withdraw the pound from the European exchange rate mechanism.
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The pound has failed to stay above the lower exchange rate limit required by the ERM – the precursor of the single currency.
The economic consequences of this are estimated to have cost the treasury £ 3.3 billion since the pound has been devalued by 17 percent and interest rates have increased twice in a day from 10 to 12-15 percent
The signing of the Lisbon Treaty in December 2007 is also significant for British Brexit as it formalizes the right to hand over power to Member States to leave the EU.
It entered into force as part of the blockade’s quest to make the organization “more democratic, more transparent and more efficient”.
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It established a set of rules and places including the introduction of the EU presidency and Article 50 – the formal process for leaving the blockade – which was eventually activated by Johnson’s predecessor, Theresa May.
Article 50 states: “Each Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its constitutional rules”.
But some argue that the European debt crisis, which has plagued the euro area since 2009, could have triggered Brexit.
Between 2009 and 2013, Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain approached the non-payment of the money borrowed by their government, known as sovereign debt.
Brexit news: the five key moments that led to Brexit
Eventually the EU and the IMF went to the rescue in Greece, Ireland and Portugal.
This has led to political and social chaos in a context of economic austerity and richer nations, such as Britain, have been frustrated with supporting other Member States.
And recently, the former Prime Minister David Cameron’s inability to get a reform deal with the blockade is said to have triggered the important vote on Brexit in Britain.
It certainly forced Cameron’s hand when it came to offering the British a vote on the nation’s accession to the EU.
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Cameron attempted and failed to review the way Brussels operates in view of the historic EU vote.
The EU has rejected Mr. Cameron for EU citizens to live in the UK for four years before benefiting from state benefits.
He also asked for financial and economic guarantees for countries outside the euro area,
and that Britain was excluded from the principle of “ever closer union”.
His failure to convince the EU to retreat has sparked a rioting in Brexiteers angry about the control of Brussels.