Monday, 22 May 2017

EU's Barnier refuses to imagine UK Brexit talks walkout

The European Union's chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, has said he does not want to consider the chance that talks on the UK's exit from the EU could collapse.

He was speaking after his UK counterpart, David Davis, made clear the threat to walk out was genuine if the EU's "divorce bill" was too high.

EU ministers on Monday gave Mr Barnier the green light for talks to start in June, after the UK election.

"No deal" was not an option, he said.

UK ministers have reacted angrily to reports that the EU may demand as much as €100bn (£86bn; $112bn) from the UK.
The EU is also insisting that "sufficient progress" be made on the bill, citizens' rights and the UK-Irish border before talks begin on a future trade deal.

The first round of talks will start on 19 June and Mr Barnier will report to EU leaders at a summit three days later. In a communique on Monday, EU officials stressed that a key to the talks' success would be their transparency for all sides.

BBC     News.