EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier speaks during a news conference at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nicosia, Cyprus. File photo/ Reuters
The EU’s chief Brexit negotiator said in an interview to be published on Thursday that he was unimpressed by threats of no-deal Brexit but that if the United Kingdom opted for such a course it would have to face the consequences.
Asked by the BBC what would happen if London tore up its EU membership card, Michel Barnier said: “The UK will have to face the consequences.”
“I think that the UK side, which is well informed and competent and knows the way we work on the EU side, knew from the very beginning that we’ve never been impressed by such a threat. It’s not useful to use it.”
Barnier, who spoke to the BBC before the current Conservative Party leadership contest, said the Withdrawal Agreement “is the only way to leave the EU in an orderly manner.”
EU Commission’s first vice-president, Frans Timmermans, told the BBC that UK ministers were “running around like idiots” when they arrived to negotiate Brexit in 2017.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Wednesday it was unlikely the European Union would reach any decision on Brexit at this week’s summit in Brussels.
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At risk of losing control of the process of leaving the European Union, the leader announced she would resign if parliament finally backed her withdrawal agreement.
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