Will the Conversatives hold an EU referendum?

‘UK Tories will hold EU referendum’

Mon, 27 Jan 2014 18:48:08 GMT

There will be a referendum on Britain’s membership in the European Union (EU) if the Conservatives win the country’s 2015 general election, British Foreign Secretary William Hague has said.

Speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show on Sunday, Hague insisted that having a referendum by the end of 2017 would remain a Tory policy even if the legislation for an in-out vote on the country’s EU membership failed to get passed.

“If David Cameron is Prime Minister after the next election there will be a referendum,” he said.

British Prime Minister David Cameron pledged in January 2013 to legislate for an in-out vote under pressure from Tory eurosceptic backbenchers and the UK Independence Party (UKIP).

The referendum bill on the UK’s EU membership, introduced by Tory backbencher James Wharton, was approved unopposed by the House of Commons last year after most Labour and Liberal Democrat MPs abstained.

The Conservative-backed bill, reached its second reading on January 10, 2014, in the House of Lords, Britain’s upper house of the parliament.

This comes as a recent poll found that most Britons prefer the UK to stay in the EU and try to shrink Brussels’ powers.

According to a survey, conducted by Ipsos MORI for think tank British Future, about 38 percent of Britons believe the UK should stay in the bloc and try to reduce the EU’s powers, compared with some 28 percent who want the country to leave the EU.

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