Brexit supporters hold a party in Parliament Square (photo courtesy: bbc.com)
The UK has officially left the European Union membership. The final decision came more than three years after the referendum in favour of Brexit. The ‘Brexit’, which happened at 23:00 GMT last night, amid both celebrations and protests. Scotland, a part of UK which voted against Brexit observed candlelit vigils, while Brexiteers celebrated the historic moment in London's Parliament Square.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised a new era of friendly cooperation with the European Union yesterday as Britain prepared to leave the bloc.
In a message released on social media an hour before the UK's departure, the prime minister said: "For many people this is an astonishing moment of hope, a moment they thought would never come.”
"And there are many of course who feel a sense of anxiety and loss.”
"And then of course there is a third group - perhaps the biggest - who had started to worry that the whole political wrangle would never come to an end.
"I understand all those feelings and our job as the government - my job - is to bring this country together now and take us forward."
After Brexit, most EU laws will continue to be in force, including the free movement of people, until December 31, when the transition period comes to an end. The UK is aiming to sign a permanent free trade agreement with the EU, along the lines of the one the EU has with Canada. But European leaders have warned that the UK faces a tough battle to get a deal by that deadline.
(With inputs from AIR and BBC)