Britain's departure date from the EU on March 29 might have to be delayed if Labour force a general election, Jeremy Corbyn has said.

The Labour leader conceded that extending the Article 50 process, which stipulates the date of exit day, “would be a possibility…because of the practicalities of negotiating” a new deal with Brussels.

In a keynote speech, Mr Corbyn confirmed his party would seek to vote down Theresa May's Brexit Plan next Tuesday and at some point thereafter call a confidence vote in her Government, if she lost, in the hope of forcing a general election.

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He dismissed the Government's offer to consider new safeguards for workers as part of the Brexit package, backing a trade union assessment that "it simply doesn't guarantee the protections that we are seeking".

The Labour leader confirmed that Labour would go into any early election on a platform of opening new negotiations with Brussels on a Brexit deal involving a customs union, single market relationship and a guarantee to keep pace with EU rights and standards.

He explained how "time" would be needed to complete these talks.

Mr Corbyn insisted there was "no split" between him and his Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer, who on Wednesday suggested an extension of the two-year period for negotiations set out in Article 50 of the EU treaties might now be "inevitable".

Asked if he agreed, the party leader said: "Quite clearly, moving into office at a period right up against the clock, there would need to be time for that negotiation.

"What Keir was doing was reflecting the practicalities of how that negotiation would be undertaken…An extension would be a possibility because clearly there would have to be time to negotiate."

But the SNP’s Stephen Gethins called on the Labour leader to end the “political posturing” and work with other parties to break the Brexit deadlock and “support a second EU referendum”.

Sir Vince Cable, the Liberal Democrat leader, echoed the point, saying: “We have no confidence in this Conservative Government but neither do we have any confidence in Mr Corbyn.

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“In the public interest, he needs to get 100 per cent behind a People’s Vote, including the option to remain in the EU.”

Speaking to party supporters in Wakefield in West Yorkshire, the Leader of the Opposition said a general election was the most "practical" and "democratic" way to "break the deadlock" in Parliament over Brexit

He said: "If the Government cannot pass its most important legislation, then there must be a general election at the earliest opportunity.

"A government that cannot get its business through the House of Commons is no government at all. It has lost its mandate so must go to the country to seek another."

And he added: "So I say to Theresa May: if you are so confident in your deal, call that election, and let the people decide.

"If not, Labour will table a motion of no confidence in the Government at the moment we judge it to have the best chance of success."

In a message apparently directed at Conservative rebels, Mr Corbyn urged MPs from across the Commons to join Labour in voting for an early poll to "break the deadlock".

"Clearly, Labour does not have enough MPs in parliament to win a confidence vote on its own. So, members across the House should vote with us to break the deadlock. This paralysis cannot continue. Uncertainty is putting people's jobs and livelihoods at risk," he declared.

The Labour leader went on: "If a general election cannot be secured, then we will keep all options on the table, including the option of campaigning for a public vote.

"But an election must be the priority. It is not only the most practical option, it is also the most democratic option. It could give the winning party a renewed mandate to negotiate a better deal for Britain and secure support for it in Parliament and across the country."

Mr Corbyn claims a defeat for Mrs May on her Government's central policy next Tuesday would be "historic" and would signal not only the failure of her premiership but also "the failure of the Conservative Party as a party of government".

He claimed that Labour's alternative Brexit deal was "practical and achievable and clearly has the potential to command majority support in Parliament".

Promising to bring together Remain voters in inner-city seats like Tottenham and Leave backers in provincial towns like Mansfield, the Labour leader said the real divide in the country was between the many who "do the work, create the wealth and pay taxes" and the "few" who "set the rules, reap the rewards and so often dodge taxes".

He said: "People across the country, whether they voted Leave or Remain, know that the system isn't working for them.

"Some see the European Union as a defence against insecurity and hostility. Others see the European Union as part of an establishment that plunged them into insecurity and hostility in the first place.

"But it's the failed system rigged against the many to protect the interests of the few that is the real cause of inequality and insecurity, whether in Tottenham or Mansfield.

"And the real solution is to transform Britain to work in the interests of the vast majority, by challenging the entrenched power of a privileged elite. That is how we can help to overcome our country's divisions," he added.