September 30, 2018 | Lodhi’s Speech at UN
September 29, 2018 | China rebuts US allegations
| Russian missiles challenge
September 28, 2018 | Iran defies America
| Britain and the EU
The European Union summit to be held end-June, is when the EU leaders will meet to discuss a number of issues, including Brexit.
At the top of the list will be how Theresa May intends to maintain a frictionless border between Ulster and Dublin.
The British Prime Minister has proposed a new customs partnership, for collecting external tariffs on behalf of the EU, but the United Kingdom Brexit grouping favors what is called “Maximum facilitation”, which uses what it considers “trusted trader schemes” to keep border checks to a minimum.
Brussels has ridiculed both proposals, insisting they do not provide the answer to the Irish question and asked Westminster to come up with something more realistic.
Germany’s is not particularly hopeful of any agreement being reached by June. He wrote on Twitter: Not many are expecting very much now as it involves the sorting out the whole of the Irish question “all at once”.
In like vein, the Irish prime minister warned the Irish border question threatens to derail the whole Brexit process, as Dublin would not support an agreement without “hard border prevention”.
Other EU officials have been less than gracious saying that in the June summit Brexit, would only be a “footnote” in the discussions.
Negotiations on an acceptable formula for Brexit remain distant with the United Kingdom proposal of a 10-mile “buffer zone” summarily dismissed by a senior EU official.
And, the idea of a 10-mile area around the 310-mile border between Belfast and Dublin to avoid ‘a hard border’ is ridiculed.
However, the United Kingdom is pushing for it with a spokesman saying, “We have set out two viable future customs arrangements with the EU…these would deliver on our commitments to ensure UK-EU trade is as frictionless as possible, avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, preserve the integrity of the United Kingdom’s internal market and enable us to establish independent international trade policy.”
Meanwhile, the EU has noted Britain cutting down on the negotiation time, with Brussels believing this is because Westminster has little or nothing new to bring to the table on how to handle the Brexit break.