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3Novices:British PM warns lawmakers against blocking Brexit

LONDON // British prime minister Theresa May warned lawmakers on Sunday not to block Brexit, after the high court ruled that she cannot start the process of leaving the European Union without parliament's approval.

"The result was clear. It was legitimate. MPs and peers who regret the referendum result need to accept what the people decided," she said in her first comments since Thursday's controversial judgment.

The Conservative government is appealing the court's finding that parliament must agree to the triggering of Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty, which begins formal negotiations on Britain leaving the bloc.

Supporters of Brexit responded angrily to the court's decision, amid speculation that pro-European lawmakers would seek to water down the break with the EU and derail Mrs May's plans to begin formal exit talks by the end of March.

The ruling sparked attacks on the judges involved, with one newspaper calling them "Enemies of the People", while one of the claimants in the case has received online rape and beheading threats.

UK Independence Party acting leader Nigel Farage said on Sunday there is a risk of unrest in Britain if voters feel their will is being thwarted.

"Believe you me, if the people in this country think they're going to be cheated, they're going to be betrayed, then we will see political anger the likes of which none of us in our lifetimes have ever witnessed," he told the BBC.

In a Sunday Telegraph column, Mrs May said her government will "get on with the job" despite the ruling.

She said parliament voted to put the decision on EU membership "in the hands of the people" in the June 23 referendum - the vote was decisive in favour of leaving the 28-nation bloc and that choice must be respected.

The high court ruling risks delaying the Brexit process that the prime minister has pledged to formally begin by the end of March. Some in parliament are pressuring her to spell out Britain's negotiating position before parliament, which she refuses to do.

Opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, whose party has 231 MPs in the 650-seat House of Commons, said he will not seek to reverse the referendum result.

But he told the Sunday Mirror tabloid that he would vote against Article 50 unless Mrs May agreed to press for continued access to the European single market and guarantee EU workplace rights after Brexit.

Mr Corbyn said: "We are not challenging the referendum. We are not calling for a second referendum. We're calling for market access for British industry to Europe."

* Agence France-Presse and Associated Press
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