EU summit reaches no deal on Brexit

How Britain will leave the Union will be decided in December

Photo: EU Theresa May and Donald Tusk

The European Council meeting last week reached no deal on Brexit, and the extraordinary summit on the issue in November waas cancelled. In the beginning of the session British PM Theresa May addressed the EU27, giving the UK Government's assessment of the negotiations. Later the EU 27 leaders agreed not to make step back on Britain;s demands, but on the same take decided to take the negotiations forward taking in account the recommendation made by Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator.

In his invitation letter to the heads of state and government, European Council President Donald Tusk recalled that “we wished for maximum progress and results that would lead to a deal in October.” As things stand today, it has proven to be more complicated than some may have expected, he underscored adding that EU27 remain determined to continue these talks on both sides. But at the same time, responsible as we are, we must prepare the EU for a no-deal scenario, which is more likely than ever before, he stressed.

President Tusk also clarified that the fact that EU27 are preparing for a no-deal scenario must not, under any circumstances, "lead us away from making every effort to reach the best agreement possible, for all sides." This is what our state of mind should be at this stage. As someone rightly said: 'It always seems impossible until it's done', he said.

In the meantime, at 4:30 pm at Berlaymont, the headquarters of the Commission started the meeting between EC President Jean-Claude Juncker and PM May.

One of the discussions that the leaders will have on Thursday morning, at the regular summit, will be on migration. The focus will be cooperation with countries of origin and transit, the fight against people smuggling networks and the recent Commission proposals on returns, the Asylum Agency and the European Border and Coast Guard. On the internal security side, they will take stock of progress achieved in upgrading police and judicial cooperation, fighting terrorism, strengthening border security and developing resilience in cyberspace. It is expected the members of the European Council to emphasise the need to rapidly follow-up on a number of proposed measures by the Commission to combat disinformation, ahead of the 2019 European elections.

Over lunch, the Euro Summit will meet informally in an inclusive format of 27 to discuss the EMU reform state of play.


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