Giovedi, 23 Novembre, 2017

The official Brexit negotiations have begun

EU UK agree for Brexit negotiations Michel Barnier EU UK agree for Brexit negotiations Michel Barnier
Parmenio Sano | 26 Giugno, 2017, 05:30

British Prime Minister Theresa May said Thursday she would set out plans at a Brussels summit to "protect" the rights of European Union citizens living in the United Kingdom after Brexit. She called the election asking the British people for a strong majority to enable her to deliver Brexit: she didn't get it.

Brussels has made the future of three million European Union citizens in Britain and one million Britons in Europe a priority, insisting they should be allowed to keep their rights to live, work, study and claim welfare benefits.

"That position hasn't changed, it's the same as it was before", said Davis, a tough-talking figure in the "Leave" campaign in last year's Brexit referendum.

It is understood she will explain the UK's "principles" on the issue of citizens' rights - a key early topic in the Brexit negotiations.

He said once there was sufficient progress on those, the talks would start looking at the EU's new relationship with Britain. May also promised to cut the burdensome bureaucracy such paperwork can involve, the official said. When the European Union "decides we have made enough progress - their words - both sets of dialogs will continue, including free trade", he said.

Merkel welcomed May's promises, but insisted that "there are, of course, many, many other issues".

Those were, he said, the rights of expatriate citizens and problems of a new EU-UK border, notably cutting across Ireland.

"We must think about the deep and meaningful partnership with Europe", he said.

"We can hear different predictions, coming from different people, about the possible outcome of these negotiations: hard Brexit, soft Brexit or no deal", he told reporters, referring to talks on Brexit that began in Brussels this week.


With the deadline for concluding substantive Brexit talks set for autumn of next year, it is safe to say the agreement reached between British and EU Brexit negotiators regarding the selection of priority topics for discussions can be viewed as a step forward. This move will discourage any other European Union member from leaving.

The two parties also agreed on holding one-week monthly rounds of negotiations, noting that the next round will be held on July 17 and will tackle the main issues of Britain's separation from the European bloc.

Macron, a committed pro-EU leader and ally of Merkel, also easily won French legislative elections on Sunday, cementing his power base.

George Soros warned Britain was approaching a tipping point, with the economy set to slow so much that Brexit might even be reversed.

"You may say I am a dreamer but I'm not the only one", Tusk added, quoting a lyric from the late John Lennon's "Imagine".

Britain is set to become the first country to leave the European Union by late March 2019, but Tusk held out hopes Thursday that it might not come to pass. He said: "I am not a dreamer".

He said that "we are working hand in hand with Germany" and that the two countries, the historic twin-driving motors of European integration, plan "to speak with one voice". We must lift the uncertainty caused by Brexit.

"Today we agreed on dates, we agreed on organisation, and we agreed on priorities for the negotiation", he said, outlining a two-step negotiation.

Macron said Thursday that "Europe is not, to my mind, just an idea".

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