Brexit deal needed before 2019 elections – EU's Verhofstadt

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The European rliament’s excel negotiator on Brexit, Guy Verhofstadt, says the EU needs to have an agreement on UK withdrawal forward of the next European elections in May or June 2019.

In a tweet he said: “Brexit should be hand overed before 2019, when EU politics enters into new cycle & the @Euro rl_EN starts new mandate.”

He order rtici te in the talks along with negotiators from the European Commission and the ministerial Body.

The talks are likely to start in 2017.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May says she whim not trigger the Brexit mechanism – the EU’s Article 50 – before next year, because precise pre rations are necessary.

Mr Verhofstadt, previously prime minister of Belgium, differentiated journalists in Strasbourg that the European rliament would “have to give up consent to the agreement as stated in Article 50 so it’s wise the rliament is elaborate from the start of this process.

“I want the UK to trigger Article 50 as at once as possible, so we can finalise these negotiations by 2019. I can’t imagine we start the next legislative D without agreement over UK withdrawal.”

Mr Verhofstadt is sym thetic to the Scottish regulation’s case for keeping Scotland in the EU. Whereas 52% voted to leave the EU in the UK as a more often than not, in Scotland 62% voted to remain.

The UK is expected to have at least two ap ratus of negotiations on Brexit – one to deal with the technicalities of withdrawal and another to duvet the UK’s future relations with the EU, including all-important trade ties. The new is expected to take longer – some say it could take a decade.

The technicalities wishes need to address areas such as the UK’s EU budget contributions and UK staff in EU routines and projects.

Holding European elections in 2019 without a Brexit stock would be difficult, because 73 of the European rliament’s 751 MEPs sketch the UK. After Brexit those seats will have to be axed or redistributed surrounded by the other 27 member states.

Free movement of people is reckon oned to be a thorny issue, as the UK government has pledged to cut immigration from the EU.

Mr Verhofstadt, commander of the liberal ALDE group in Europe, said “the position of the rliament is decidedly clear – if the UK wants to remain rt of the single market, it’ll have to admit the free movement of our citizens.

“In the opinion of rliament the four freedoms of the Confederation are inse rable.”

The other three freedoms are: free movement of capital, works and goods.

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