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Brexit: Timmermans and Barnier (EU), “British MPs have to decide”. Looming risk of no-deal

Frans Timmermans

(Strasbourg) “The least possible damage should be done, in a political process that will be harmful”. Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission, – in Strasbourg for the EP plenary session – sent this message to London at a time when the British Parliament and Government are struggling to find a way out of the Brexit chaos. “Following yesterday’s rejection of the Brexit deal, it is now for the British to tell us how to proceed towards an orderly withdrawal” of the UK. In the meantime, it is our duty to protect our citizens, our businesses, and the interests” of the EU, threatened by Brexit. Timmermans’ words were echoed by EU Brexit Chief Negotiator, Michel Barnier, who said: “The risk of a no-deal”, of a disorderly withdrawal of the UK, “has never been higher. There may be far-reaching consequences we should be ready to face”. Barnier also emphasised that, following last night’s rejection by Westminster of the Brexit agreement, “the responsibility to find a way out lies fair and square with the UK”. Barnier insisted that the withdrawal agreement “is and will remain the only available treaty. Then, after Brexit, we will have time to negotiate good future relations with the UK, which will remain a friendly country”.

 

 

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