European Union says Brexit negotiations could take longer

Your round Jean Claude Juncker says it's time for Britain to pay to leave the EU
Credit EPA

Your round Jean Claude Juncker says it's time for Britain to pay to leave the EU Credit EPA

The European Commission president warned that the talks "will take longer than initially thought" because of Britain's refusal to accept the EU's divorce bill demands. As we cannot do this, we will not be able to say during the European Council in October that now we can move to the second phase of the negotiations, which means the shaping of the British-European future.

Juncker's comments came a day after the chief European Union negotiator Michel Barnier said the Brexit negotiations had reached a "disturbing deadlock" over the financial commitments.

"I do not want that", Jean Claude Juncker said in a speech at Luxembourg University.

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"It won't be easy with 28, but with 98 I imagine it to be downright impossible", Juncker said.

"I wouldn't like that", he added.

This follows the fifth round of Brexit talks, after which the EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said there was a "deadlock" in discussions over the financial settlement, and that he could not say "sufficient progress" had been made in order to move onto discussing a future UK-EU relationship. London has been hoping and pressing for this to happen at the summit.

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Juncker insisted the British "have to pay" if they want talks to begin on a future trade deal between the United Kingdom and the EU. Why not say, easily, with common sense - which is not a political category, as we know - that things will stay as they are?

European Union leaders meeting in Brussels next week are expected to say that there is not likely to be enough progress until the next summit in December, but that the bloc should begin internal preparations for trade talks now. "But now they have to pay". The Europeans have to be grateful for so many things Britain has brought to Europe before war, during war, after war. Everywhere and every time. "Why are we discussing nonsense like that?" "But now they have to pay".

On Thursday, Barnier and the U.K.'s lead negotiator, David Davis, said there had been progress on the issue of citizens' rights.

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