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UK lawmakers call for Parliament to be recalled after court says suspension was unlawful

Key Points
  • The U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decision to suspend parliament has been rules as unlawful by a Scottish court.
  • The U.K. Parliament was shuttered Monday and will reconvene on October 14.
  • The suspension — known as prorogation — marks the end of one parliamentary session before the start of the next, and it's usual for it to take place at this time of year.
Pro-EU supporters outside the British Parliament buildings in London on Dec. 12, 2018. 
Mike Newberg | CNBC

The U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decision to suspend parliament has been ruled as unlawful by Scotland's highest court.

The U.K. Parliament was shuttered Monday and will reconvene on October 14. The suspension — known as prorogation — marks the end of one parliamentary session before the start of the next, and it's usual for it to take place at this time of year.

But the current shutdown, which will last five weeks, is more controversial than most due to its extended length and because it comes at a period of high anxiety in U.K. politics over the direction of Brexit.

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Critics said the shutdown was timed to stop scrutiny of, and debate around, the government's Brexit plans. The government insisted the prorogation was to allow it to launch a new legislative agenda.

The Scottish court did not order the suspension to be overturned, however. The U.K. government said it was "disappointed" by the decision and will appeal to the U.K.'s Supreme Court on Tuesday.

It is uncertain what impact the ruling, and forthcoming challenge, will have although opposition lawmakers have already called for parliament to be recalled.

The lawmaker who led the challenge to the suspension said the ruling was "historic." "Huge thanks to all our supporters & our fantastic legal team who have achieved the historic ruling that #prorogation is #unlawful," Scottish National Party lawmaker Joanna Cherry said on Twitter.

Last week a court in Edinburgh rejected the challenge to the suspension, but that was overturned Wednesday on appeal.

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—Reuters and AP contributed reporting to this story