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As activists assembled in Liverpool for their annual gathering, Jeremy Corbyn said he would still prefer to force a general election by defeating Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plan in the Commons.

"There will be a clear vote in the conference", he said.

Speaking to the Sunday Mirror, Mr Corbyn said: "What comes out of conference I will adhere to".

Mr Watson acknowledged there was "always a danger" that the resolution could be a fudge but "when it comes to a second referendum I'm sure there will be words on offer that will allow the party to come to a fixed view on that".

"We could well be looking towards a general election and you know what?"

Now, with European Union divorce negotiations stuck and Britain due to leave the bloc in March, many Labour members think the left-leaning party must change its course. "So if conference makes a decision I will not walk away from it and I will act accordingly".

Jeremy Corbyn has said he will "obviously be bound" by what Labour members decide on a second Brexit referendum, amid growing calls for him to back the idea. Most of the party's half a million members voted in 2016 to remain in the European Union, but many of its 257 lawmakers represent areas of the country that wanted to leave.

Many believe that, with Theresa May's weakened position following the rejection of her Chequers proposals by European Union leaders, Labour should take the opportunity to call for the future of Brexit to be put to the British people.

The YouGov survey of more than 1,000 Labour members found 86% support a referendum on the outcome of Brexit talks, against just 8% who oppose it.

The support of the main opposition party would be a major boost to campaigners for a second vote on Brexit.

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Britain's opposition Labour Party Deputy Leader Tom Watson delivers his keynote speech at the Labour Party Conference in Brighton, Britain, September 26, 2017.

He said: 'A new poll shows 86% of Labour party members want the British people to be given a final say on the UK's future relationship with Europe.

But shadow chancellor John McDonnell has warned a second referendum could stoke racial tensions and far-right populism.

He said: "The proposition being put forward by our leader is something I am prepared to trust".

"I'm desperately trying to avoid any rise of xenophobia that happened last time around, I'm desperately trying to avoid giving any opportunity to Ukip or the far right".

"I think we can reach an agreement where there is a freedom of trade across the Irish border and across the Irish Sea. That's why I think we now need to take a stand - we the Labour Party and we the country".

Former foreign secretary David Miliband said it was an "absolute dereliction of duty" for Labour not to say that the deal obtained by the Prime Minister must be put to the people.

Asked if the country could soon be facing an election, Corbyn replied: "We could be, because this government doesn't seem very strong, it is looking in two directions at the same time, on one hand, a trade deal with the USA, on the other hand, some kind of relationship with Europe".

  • Sonia Alvarado