"We need more time": Brexit deal not possible before Thursday summit, EU leaders say

"We need more time": Brexit deal not possible before Thursday summit, EU leaders say
  • Clock-gray 12:46
  • calendar-gray 15 October 2019

EU leaders urged British PM Boris Johnson that it would not be possible to agree upon Brexit deal before Thursday’s meeting of European Union leaders in Brussels, APA reports citing Sputnik.

“I think there is no time in a practical or legal way to find an agreement before the EU Council meeting. We need more time,” said Finland’s Prime Minister Antti Rinne, the government of which currently holds the rotating EU presidency, appearing in Helsinki alongside Belgian PM Charles Michel, who will be the next European Council president.
This was echoed by the next EU’s foreign affairs chief Josep Borell, who told reporters after a meeting in Luxembourg that EU might resort to “stopping the watch” to get the deal done.

“You know, in Europe, we always take decisions on the edge of the precipice, on the edge of the cliff,” Borell said. “Even when the last minute comes, then we stop the watch and say that we need technically more time to fulfil all the requirements, all the last minute requirements.”
EU’s Chief Negotiator Michael Barnier however suggested that the new agreement between UK and EU could still be struck this week.

But the delay in negotiations could mean that it would be practically unreal for Boris Johnson to present an agreed deal at a special setting at Westminster on Saturday, potentially postponing Brexit much further.

Last week Boris Johnson presented his new Brexit plan which involves removing the Irish backstop and leaving Northern Ireland in the customs territory of the UK, while following EU rules and standard on all goods. This would mean the creation of customs border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

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