Negotiations edge closer to a deal on Brexit divorce issues
After a working lunch between the European Commission president and the British prime minister had social media on edge for hours, Jean-Claude Juncker said it had not been “possible to reach a complete agreement today.”
There were still 2 or 3 issues for discussion, which would continue this week. However, Juncker said there was a common understanding on most issues.
“We were narrowing down our positions to a huge extent today”
The British prime minister Theresa May stated that they had “worked hard and in good faith”, and that it was clear both sides wanted to move forward. She added that some issues will require further negotiations and consultations”.
Theresa May was “confident” these negotiations would conclude positively, while Juncker stated that “this is not a failure; it is the start of the very last round, and I am very confident that we reach an agreement within this week.”
The next European Council on 13-14 December will decide whether sufficient progress has been achieved on the three issues (financial settlement, citizens' rights, the Irish border) so that talks can start on a future EU-UK trade deal.