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Boris Johnson news - LIVE: PM refuses to rule out holding election after Halloween in order to first force through no-deal Brexit

Follow all the latest developments as they happened

Prime Minister Boris Johnson repeats his Brexit plans: 'We are going to leave the EU on the 31 October'

Boris Johnson refused to rule out holding a general election after 31 October to force through a no-deal Brexit if he loses a no-confidence vote in the Commons.

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said he “would be sending Jeremy Corbyn in a cab to Buckingham Palace to say ‘we’re taking over’”, if the prime minister ignores a vote of no confidence.

MPs opposed to no deal are reportedly considering a move to have parliament sit during conference season in a bid to pass legislation to extend Article 50.

In a Facebook live video broadcast from his office at Number 10, the prime minister announced the government would make changes to immigration rules to attract more scientists from around the world.

His comments came after he visited the Centre for Fusion Energy in Culham, where he was told they were "only a few years away from being able to provide UK-made fusion reactors".

And Scottish Labour sent a warning to Jeremy Corbyn expressing "serious concerns" over deepening splits on the party's stance on independence.

Please allow a moment for the liveblog below to load:

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Good morning and welcome to The Independent’s live coverage of events at Westminster and beyond. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said he “would be sending Jeremy Corbyn” to Buckingham Palace if Boris Johnson ignores a no-confidence vote in the Commons.

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Here’s Chiara Giordano with more on John McDonnell’s latest comments at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

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Boris Johnson’s senior advisor Dominic Cummings is very keen to clamp down on leaks from Downing Street. So he won’t be happy about the latest gossip coming out of No 10, with one Conservative insider telling The Guardian he is running at “reign of terror”, with staff said be panicking about losing their jobs if they aren’t seen to be working “flat out” to deliver a no-deal Brexit on 31 October.

“The level of terror is greater than Priti Patel would like to exert on the criminal classes,” the source told the newspaper. “It is far, far scarier than under Nick Timothy. He is two Fionas plus a Nick rolled into one. It’s the worst of both worlds in one person.”

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Here’s our sketch writer Tom Peck’s must-read on No 10’s new prince of darkness.

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It may recess, but our elected representatives are keeping busy. MPs opposed to a no-deal Brexit are working on a motion to have parliament sit during September’s traditional conference season break, according to The Guardian.

The move is aimed at giving them more time to come up with (and pass) legislation forcing the government to extend Article 50.

“Of course we can decide to sit through recess. Of course we can decide to amend precedent,” said Labour MP Peter Kyle. “If government acts unconventionally and flouts the sovereign power of parliament, parliament will rise to the challenge and if they break the rules, we will make new rules.”

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Sir Malcolm Rifkind – the Tory grandee who has warned the PM he is following a course set by Charles I – has been talking about the need for a general election to resolve the Brexit crisis.

“If Boris Johnson wants to go ahead with no deal he has to call an election so the electorate can decide,” he told talkRADIO’s Julia Hartley-Brewer in an angry exchange.

“If he still wishes to go ahead with no deal then he can’t just ignore parliament,” Sir Malcolm said.

“He has to do what we have all understood for one hundred, two hundred years, he has to call a general election so that the electorate, the rest of us can take that decision.”

He added: “The electorate were never asked to fight a general election on the basis we are going to leave with no deal.”

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If you’re still catching up with the slightly confusing row over John McDonnell and Labour’s policy towards not blocking a second independence referendum in Scotland, here’s Ashley Cowburn with all the details.

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And our political correspondent Lizzy Buchan has prepared a handy explainer on how Scottish nationalists could secure their much-desired indyref2.

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More from Sir Malcolm Rifkind’s interview on talkRADIO. The Tory grandee said it would be “ludicrous and totally ridiculous” to hold a general election after crashing out of the EU on 31 October.

“That is the suggestion that was being put forward by Mr [Dominic] Cummings, who is an unelected staffer with Boris Johnson.”

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