Brexit Minister David Davis confirmed the willingness of the Conservatives to walk away from a bad deal with Brussels, The Sunday Times reports.
In an interview with the Sunday Times, Mr. Davis reiterated that he considers the conclusion of a trade deal more likely, but echoed Prime Minister Theresa May to underscore that the UK is ready to withdraw from the negotiations without any accord.
“We don’t need to just look like we can walk away, we need to be able to walk away,” Davies said.
Theresa May’s call for snap elections has been justified on the grounds that the opposition was undermining the government’s negotiating position and she has repeatedly asked the electorate to “strengthen her hand” in Brexit negotiations.
Davis’ hardball warning comes ahead of the June 8 legislative elections and was published on the very day party leaders abstained from political campaigning in memory of the murdered Labour MP, Jo Cox.
Meanwhile, London and Brussels have failed to reach a consensus over the timetable and the basic negotiation framework. The EU’s Brexit negotiator, Mr. Michel Barnier, has formed a consensus over the notion of “sequential” negotiations, in which EU citizens’ rights, the Irish border, and the so-called “divorce settlement” are addressed before a trade deal is put on the table.
The UK is ready to come to an early bilateral agreement on the current status of EU and UK immigrants but wants all other issues to be discussed in parallel.