S&D MEPs are disappointed by the latest proposals put forward by UK Prime Minister Theresa May that fail to break the deadlock on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. The new proposals follow the historic defeat of the Conservative government last week over the withdrawal agreement and political declaration on future UK-EU relations.
S&D Group president Udo Bullmann and S&D Group spokesperson for Brexit Roberto Gualtieri said:
“We are now just 67 days away from the UK leaving the EU and the Conservative government is still busy negotiating with itself. We had hoped that following the unprecedented defeat for the UK government last week, the UK Prime Minister would come forward with something new to break the deadlock. Instead, she is wasting time calling for a revision or clarification over the backstop. Nobody wants to see the backstop used however it has to be there as a fail-safe to prevent a hard border between the Republic and Northern Ireland, while protecting the integrity of the Single Market.
“The EU has always been clear that we want as close and ambitious relationship as possible. If the UK was to change its red lines then we would be open to this. However, if these do not change then there is no possibility of reopening the withdrawal agreement.
“It is now up to the House of Commons to see if it can find a way out of this mess. We will see if there is a workable majority for a form of Brexit that is also acceptable for the EU or the question must be put back to the British people. We have always seen Brexit as a historic mistake and if the UK population were to change its mind, we would welcome them back with open arms.
“The EU has remained united throughout this process and has worked in a responsible way to mitigate the worst consequences of Brexit. This unity has been our greatest strength and we will not give it up now.”