European Union trashes Theresa May's Brexit plan

21 September, 2018, 17:42 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and European Commission President Jean Claude Juncker at Leinster House earlier this year

This comes as European Council president Donald Tusk said that the leaders all agree that UK Prime Minister Theresa May's "Chequers" proposals, which amount to keeping the UK in the single market for goods, "will not work".

She said she had treated the European Union "with nothing but respect" during the negotiations but that at this late stage of the process it was "not acceptable" for one sides to reject the other's proposals without a proper explanation.

The combative piece is said to have infuriated leaders by effectively rejecting Michel Barnier's revised proposals on the border issue before they have even been published.

Speaking about the need to work together, May added: "We need to hear from the European Union what the real issues are, and what their alternative is, so we can discuss them and we can make progress".

European Council President Donald Tusk said bluntly at a meeting in Salzburg, Austria on Thursday that parts of May's plan simply "will not work", while French President Emmanuel Macron called pro-Brexit U.K. politicians "liars" who had misled the country about the costs of leaving the 28-nation bloc.


On the subject of a second referendum vote, she said she would "not break up my country or disrespect the referendum result".

After a dinner of Wiener schnitzel in Salzburg, EU leaders said they will push for a Brexit deal next month but warned May that if she will not give ground on trade and the Irish border by November, they are ready to cope with Britain crashing out. So May was right when she argued in her pre-Salzburg column in Die Welt that to enforce an "external customs border", a border governed and policed by a foreign institution, between different parts of the United Kingdom would be unacceptable and "no other country would accept it". Britain wants to controls its own immigration and make its own independent trade deals. If the European Union accepted May's plan, it would send a message that leaving the European Union enables a special single market arrangement for the outgoing country.

"Until we do, we can't make progress". "A good relationship at the end of this process depends on it", she added. "But of course, language, detail, how you actually achieve those things I think any reasonable person who wants to get an agreement has to be willing to compromise on those things", he said, adding that a deal was in everyone's interest.

The PM also pointed to Northern Ireland as a sticking point in the current Brexit negotiations, saying the Government "will do everything in our power to prevent a return to a hard border".

"We need serious engagement on resolving the two big problems in the negotiations".

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