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EU Referendum Will Be On 23 June

Prime Minister David Cameron has confirmed a referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union will be held on 23 June.

The PM briefed his ministers at a Cabinet meeting on Saturday morning after leaving Brussels with what he described as a "historic" deal on the UK's future relationship with Europe.

Speaking outside Downing Street, Mr Cameron warned that leaving the EU would be a "leap in the dark" as he urged voters to back his reforms.

The PM confirmed the Cabinet had backed his plan but individual ministers would be free to campaign on either side.

: What will you decide?

 

:: David Cameron's EU Reform Deal: What It Means

Following his return from a marathon EU negotiating session in Brussels, Mr Cameron said leaving would threaten Britain's "economic and national security".

"Those who want to leave Europe cannot tell you if British businesses would be able to access Europe's free trade single market, or if working people's jobs are safe, or how much prices would rise," he said.

"All they're offering is a risk at a time of uncertainty - a leap in the dark."

Key elements of the deal include agreements over welfare payments to migrants, Britain's right to opt-out of the eurozone, and a promise the UK would have stronger sovereign control over laws made in Brussels.

:: EU Vote: What The Key Figures Are Saying

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn dismissed the renegotiation as a "missed opportunity" and claimed the changes Mr Cameron has negotiated are "largely irrelevant to the problems most British people face".

Now that a deal has been agreed, ministers are free to declare which side of the debate they will support.

Theresa May has confirmed she will back Mr Cameron and join the In camp, as have other high-profile ministers, such as Mr Osborne, Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon and Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin.

But Justice Secretary Michael Gove has defied the PM and joined the campaign for Britain to leave.

:: In Or Out: Where Do Cabinet Members Stand?

Mr Gove said it "pained" him to disagree with the PM, adding: "But I cannot duck the choice which the Prime Minister has given every one of us.

"In a few months' time we will all have the opportunity to decide whether Britain should stay in the European Union or leave.

"I believe our country would be freer, fairer and better off outside the EU."

Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, Leader of the House Chris Grayling, Culture Secretary John Whittingdale, Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers and Employment Minister Priti Patel have also declared for the Out campaign.

Sky News understands London Mayor Boris Johnson will finally make his intentions clear on Sunday night.

 

: More on the Referendum

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