EU threatens to end Brexit talks, argue 'UK is not ready'

Financial negotiations run to a standstill after less than 24 hours

20 July 2017, 9:33am
The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier
The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier
Members of the European Parliament (EP) have attacked Britain’s refusal to pay a financial settlement for Brexit, arguing that the dispute will ‘stall’ further negotiations.

The negotiations appeared to run to a standstill after only 24 hours of resuming in Brussels, over the controversial “divorce bill”, which the EU argues Britain has to pay following the decision to leave in 2016.

Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, was ready to tell the British side that the discussions on Brexit served little to no purpose until the UK made the pledge to pay a hefty bill, according to The Independent.

This warning comes after David Davis, the British Secretary charged with negotiating the Brexit talks, left a meeting in Brussels after just one hour last Monday.

Barnier also said that Davis only spoke to him for 15 minutes before leaving the negotiations to his officials.

Theresa May’s official spokesman denied having seen these comments.

However, the UK Brexit department acknowledged last week that there would be “obligations” to pay a substantially large financial settlement, but Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson told UK members of Parliament that the EU could “go whistle”.

The EU has refused to present a definite figure on the financial settlement, but rumours are swirling that the figure could run up to €100 billion.