UK parliament approves first stage of bill to stop no-deal Brexit

An anti-Brexit protester holds up a prop Big Ben outside the Houses of the Parliament in London

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's parliament approved the first stage of a bill designed to stop a so-called no-deal Brexit on Oct. 31, underlining the lack of support for Prime Minister Boris Johnson's vow to take Britain out of the European Union with or without a deal.

Lawmakers voted 329 against 300 to start the next stage in the reading of the bill that would force the government to seek an extension if no deal is in place with Brussels by Oct. 19 unless parliament has agreed to a no-deal.

(Reporting by Kylie MacLellan and William James, writing by Elizabeth Piper; editing by Stephen Addison)