Johnson to explore Brexit deal chances at a meeting with Juncker

British PM Boris Johnson arrived today in Luxembourg for talks with EC President Jean-Claude Juncker hoping for a breakthrough in a stalled Brexit talks, news wires reported. With less than seven weeks until Britain is due to leave the EU, Johnson has yet to reach an agreement with Brussels on how to manage the exit in a non-hurting way.

On Sunday Johnson insisted he was still aiming for a deal before the 31 October deadline and that the next few days would be vital. “I believe passionately that we can do it, and I believe that such an agreement is in the interests not just of the UK but also of our European friends,” he wrote in the Daily Telegraph newspaper.

The future of the land border between EU member Ireland and the British province of Northern Ireland is still the central issue of disagreement both between Johnson and the EU, and between him and British lawmakers. Britain’s parliament three times rejected a deal negotiated by his predecessor Theresa May which included the so-called backstop mechanism to keep the seamless Irish border open.

Johnson told reporters he was feeling “cautious” as he went into a Luxembourg restaurant with Juncker, where he was expected to build his case for a revised deal that he hopes will be agreed at an EU leaders' summit on 17-18 October. Britain's Brexit minister, Stephen Barclay, and the EU's Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, joined the lunch.

 

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