Sunak accused of torpedoing Brexit talks as EU summit backfires

Boris Johnson discusses partygate and Brexit three years on

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

The Government has been accused of torpedoing critical talks on Northern Ireland after it emerged that the UK held secret talks on improving relations with the EU. The cross-party summit, was entitled: “How can we make Brexit work better with our neighbours in Europe? But veteran backbencher Sir John Redwood told the Daily Express that taking a softer stance is “deeply damaging” to the UK’s negotiating position.

When asked whether the summit could jeopardize our position in post-Brexit negotiations over Northern Ireland, Sir John said: “I think its deeply damaging to the whole United Kingdom’s negotiating position.

“We should have learnt by now that it’s only when you’re firm and strong with the EU that you have any chance of making progress.

“When I was single market minister many years ago I realised you have to be extremely firm if you want to get what you wanted.

“If you show any weakness, they walk all over you.”

Mr Redwood added: “The advice I’ve got for the Government is the only language the EU understands, I’m afraid, is when you’re strong.

“So what we need to do to complete Brexit, which is what the people want, is to push through the Northern Ireland Protocol legislation through the Lords because it passed through the Commons with a big majority. We need an independent solution for Northern Ireland.

“It’s quite obvious after all these years that the EU is trying to utilise Northern Ireland rather than seeking a proper solution.”

He called for the Government to be “extremely firm”, adding: “I’m recommending a much more positive approach to Brexit because most Brexit voters feel they haven’t got Brexit.

“They’ve been let down because the EU has made life extremely difficult and the Government has been too sensitive to EU views and not sensitive enough to Brexit voter views.”

Meanwhile, former Brexit negotiator Lord Frost called for the Government to “fully and enthusiastically embrace” Brexit, rather than trying to fix it behind closed doors.

The former Brexit minister said: “Brexit doesn’t need ‘fixing’.

“It needs this Conservative government, elected with a huge mandate on a Brexit programme, to fully and enthusiastically embrace its advantages instead of leaving the field to those who never wanted it in the first place.”

Crisis for Sunak as 62 percent of Tory voters back Liz Truss tax cuts [INSIGHT]
Tories defend deputy chief Lee Anderson as MPs slam ‘leftie hysteria’ [REACTION]
David Davis fumes as UK fined £2.3bn by EU 3 years after Brexit [REVEAL]

Meanwhile, former UKIP leader Nigel Farage said: “The full sellout of Brexit is underway”, accusing the Tory party of having “never believed in it”.

The discussions, first revealed by the Observer, involved frontbench MPs from both main parties, as well as diplomats, foreign policy experts and prominent business figures.

Senior Tory Michael Gove took part in the meeting, held last week at Ditchley Park country house in Oxfordshire.

David Lammy and John Healey, two senior members of the Labour party, also attended the two-day gathering.

Delegates were told there was now a view among “some at least, that so far the UK has not found its way forward outside the EU”.

A source told the Mirror: “The main thrust of it was that Britain is losing out, that Brexit is not delivering, our economy is in a weak position”.

The summit comes three years on from the UK’s exit from the European Union.

Source: Read Full Article