June 19 was day one of the Brexit negotiations. David Davis and Michel Barnier will be leading what is expected to be one of the most tantalising sets of negotiations in the history of European integration. Difficult decisions will have to be taken on a number of issues, such as the rights of EU citizens in the UK and UK citizens in the EU, the Irish border and the future of the UK-EU trade relationship.
Last week marked the last prime minister’s questions before the British election in June and seems a good place to examine the reasons Theresa May might be less secure that she seems. While her Conservative Party is 21 points ahead of Labour in the polls — its biggest lead in almost a decade — there are four reasons to doubt it will stay there.
The country which tried to invade England in 1588 may become its best ally. After the 28 European partners held their Summit in Malta at the beginning of February, this was the Bloomberg headline regarding the relations between Madrid and London during the Brexit negotiations. But the question of Gibraltar remains a thorny one.
Ms May’s pledges to maintain a solid alliance with her European partners hardly match her open challenge to the EU. Conscious of the fact that any soft Brexit would entail concessions on open frontiers for people plus a humiliating acceptance of the Community acquis, she has crossed the Rubicon, severing links with the internal market and other EU disciplines.
As was expected, Teresa May announced that her plan is for the UK to exit the EU and the single market, also taking back control of its frontiers. Analysts believe that she will face problems with her EU partners because she seems to overlook the fact that the Brexit negotiations are not one-sided.
John Bruton | In June, the people of the United Kingdom may vote to leave the European Union (EU). At the moment, a narrow majority favors remaining in the EU, but a large group is undecided. That group could swing toward a “leave” position for a variety of reasons, including what might be temporary EU problems with refugees. However temporary the reasons might be, a decision to leave would be politically irreversible.