Angela Merkel tells Boris Johnson Brexit deal to scrap backstop CAN be done in the coming 30 days & # 39;
Angela Merkel gave Boris Johnson a Brexit boost today because she said that reducing the backstop would be possible if the UK could offer practical and workable alternatives within the next 30 days because she also insisted that Germany was ready for a No Deal split.
The German Chancellor said that if the UK were the & # 39; riddle & # 39; the Irish border protocol, it would be willing to listen to the proposals.
Johnson welcomed the & # 39; sizzling timetable & # 39; because he said he agreed that & # 39; we have the job of producing those solutions & # 39; because he suggested that the previous government led by Theresa May had not explained enough alternatives.
The comments came when the two first met in Berlin for a working dinner tonight when Mr. Johnson was expected to make it clear that he was taking the UK seriously by the current deadline of October 31 with or without a deal.
He must travel to Paris tomorrow for a lunch meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron, trying to convince European leaders to renegotiate the terms of the British separation from the bloc – something they have refused to do so far.
Angela Merkel and Boris Johnson talk while standing on a balcony prior to dinner as part of a chancellery meeting
The pair of leaders was animated considering chatting on the balcony prior to the formal dinner in Berlin tonight
After you, no, after you: the prime minister and the chancellor were the image of courtesy tonight on the red carpet in Berlin
Some handwritten notes from Boris were visible when he put his cards back in his breast pocket – including the word DEAL (ringed) in capital letters
Angela Merkel and Boris Johnson today seemed to have a healthy, interpersonal relationship in Berlin, smiling, smiling and talking. Right: the word DEAL was written in block letters on the PM's speech cards
Berlin, Paris and Brussels had previously preventively prevented the shift from shifting back to the core question of the backstop that Mr Johnson insisted on having to be scrapped to close a deal.
Ms Merkel's allies said one day after another that demolition & # 39; completely impossible & # 39; would be, while a French presidential assistant said today that Mr. Macron was now working with the conviction that No Deal was the & # 39; most likely & # 39; scenario.
Meanwhile, Dublin said it would not be & # 39; steamed & # 39; on the Irish border protocol.
Downing Street had warned against the idea that conversations with Mrs. Merkel and Mr. Macron would lead to a major breakthrough.
But Mrs. Merkel's recognition that she is willing to listen to backstop alternatives will have delighted Downing Street because her comments suggest that there might still be movement in the issue that could open the way to a deal.
Despite a likely new optimism in number 10, however, an agreement between Great Britain and the EU still seems far away.
Brussels will be very skeptical that the UK will be able to come up with alternatives for the backstop that are strong enough to abolish the insurance policy that was designed to ensure that no return to a hard border on the island of Ireland takes place no agreement is reached about future trading conditions.
Separately this afternoon Jeremy Corbyn invited opposition leaders and Tory Remainer rebels to meet each other on August 27 to & # 39; all available tactics to prevent No Deal & # 39; to discuss.
The two leaders sat for photos on a raised red plinth after the prime minister's red carpet reception this afternoon in Berlin
Mrs. Merkel offered Boris Johnson a lifeline today and said it would be possible to resolve the backstop request within 30 days
Boris Johnson was greeted this afternoon by Angela Merkel in Berlin when he arrived in Germany for the confrontation with Brexit conversations
Johnson was welcomed to the German capital with full military honor when he and Mrs. Merkel inspected a guard of honor outside the Chancellery building in Berlin
The two leaders spoke to the media before a working dinner where Mr. Johnson was expected to emphasize that he is serious about leaving the EU with or without a deal on October 31
Mrs Merkel gave the British prime minister a Brexit boost when she invited the UK to come up with alternatives for the backstop
Following Mr Johnson's arrival in Berlin, the two leaders made statements to the press and then asked questions when Ms Merkel hinted at a possible path to a Brexit resolution.
She said the backstop always had a & # 39; fallback position & # 39; and would only come into effect if no other solution could be agreed that would have the & # 39; integrity of the internal market & # 39; would protect.
But then she added: & # 39; If anyone can solve this riddle, if we find this solution, then we said we would probably find it in the next two years, but maybe we can do it in the next 30 days find.
& # 39; Then we are one step further in the right direction and naturally we must do everything we can to do this. & # 39;
Johnson said it is our job to produce solutions for the Northern Ireland border issue and he welcomed the & # 39; blank 30-day timetable & # 39; that Mrs. Merkel has suggested coming up with the answers.
He added: & I think we should remove the whole and the whole – the backstop – and then, as Chancellor Merkel says, work on the alternative arrangements.
& # 39; There are abundant solutions being offered that have already been discussed. I think, to be honest, they have been very actively proposed by the British government so far over the past three years.
& # 39; You (Mrs Merkel) are right to say that it is up to us to produce those solutions, those ideas, to show how we can tackle the issue of the Northern Irish border and that is what we want to do.
& # 39; I must say that I am very happy to listen to you tonight Angela to hear that the conversations that are going now can finally begin.
& # 39; You have set a very harrowing 30-day timetable – if I understand you correctly, I am more than happy with that. & # 39;
Mrs Merkel said that she wanted to continue to maintain very close relations between the UK and the EU & # 39; after Britain left the block and she preferred a deal that would be closed before October 31.
But about the prospect of a No Deal split, she said: & # 39; We are ready. & # 39;
Mrs. Merkel and Mr. Johnson enjoyed a drink on the chancellery terrace while the prime minister undertook his first trip abroad since becoming prime minister in July
The confrontation between Mr Johnson and Mrs Merkel is considered crucial when the EU and the UK try to prevent a No Deal split on Halloween
Johnson said he preferred the UK to leave the EU with a deal – something he seemed to have emphasized in his notes because he had written DEAL in capital letters
Johnson had used his opening remarks to initially charm Mrs. Merkel because he said it was & # 39; obvious & # 39; was that his first trip to Germany as a prime minister should be.
But he then struck a loud tone because he said he & # 39; absolutely clear & # 39; wanted to be on what needed to be done to enable the UK and the EU to conclude an agreement.
He said: & We in the UK want a deal. We are looking for a deal and I believe we can get one.
& # 39; But it is clear that we cannot accept the current withdrawal agreement, arrangements that divide the UK or lock us up in EU regulatory and trade regimes, without the UK controlling it.
& # 39; We must remove that backstop. If we can, I am absolutely certain that we can continue together. & # 39;
Despite Ms Merkel's comments on the backstop, she maintained that it would still be like a block for the EU to negotiate the way forward from a & # 39; uniform, consistent position & # 39 ;.
Mr Johnson's impetus in Berlin came when Mr Corbyn made a new step to try to merge an anti-No Deal coalition in the House of Commons.
The Labor leader wrote to senior MPs from all parties this afternoon to invite them to sit with him next Tuesday.
He said in the letter: “The chaos and disruption of the Borx Johnson Brexit deal is real and threatening, since the government-leaked Operation Yellowhammer file is crystal clear. That is why we must do everything we can to stop it. & # 39;
Mr Johnson's meeting with Mrs Merkel is the first stage in a two-day European tour that will lead him to Paris tomorrow for discussions with Emmanuel Macron
Johnson told Ms Merkel in their statements to the press that if the backstop can be dropped: & # 39; I am absolutely certain that we can move forward together & # 39;
A French presidential assistant had previously rejected Mr Johnson's demand for the backstop to be rejected and contradicted the Prime Minister's claim that if Britain left the EU without a deal, it would not have to pay a £ 39 billion divorce bill .
& # 39; The most likely scenario is that of No Deal & # 39 ;, the official said.
Simon Coveney, photographed in July at the Andrew Marr Show, said today that Ireland would not be steamed by the UK & # 39;
& # 39; The idea to say & # 39; there is no deal, so I don't pay & # 39; does not work. We cannot imagine that a country like the UK would withdraw from an international commitment. & # 39;
The official added: & # 39; There is no magic wand to make this bill disappear. & # 39;
Simon Coveney, Irish Foreign Minister, said that although no one wanted to see the relationship between Ireland and the UK deteriorate, Dublin would not be prescribed by London.
He said: & # 39; We are not going to be steam-rolled at the end because a British Prime Minister has rolled out new red lines. That is not a reasonable approach.
& # 39; We try to manage relationships in a manner consistent with the Good Friday agreement.
& # 39; Ireland is a confident young country that expects to negotiate on equal terms.
& # 39; If we did not have a backstop, we would have no answers to how we solve the border challenge.
& # 39; The withdrawal agreement provides a facility for multiple assessment mechanisms. & # 39;
Before Johnson traveled to Germany, he again committed himself to his & # 39; do or die & # 39; Brexit pledged and promised to make Britain the best country in the world while preparing for his confrontation with Mrs. Merkel.
He tweeted this morning a video of his first speech on the stairs of Downing Street, cut with images of the Red Arrows, the Union Flag and the White Cliffs of Dover, along with a hardline message that he does not agree with a new Brexit delay .
Johnson tried to send a message to the EU this morning, once again promising to get the UK out of the block with or without a deal before the Halloween deadline
Johnson has demanded that the backstop be removed from the Brexit deal. He will personally present his question to Angela Merkel today while flying to Berlin for interviews. The timing and content of the video he tweeted this morning, including images of the Red Arrows, will be carefully noted on the continent.
He tweeted: & # 39; We're leaving the EU on October 31 and making this country the best in the world to live in. & # 39;
Mr Johnson set down his booth earlier this week with an uncompromising letter to the EU saying that the backstop border protocol should be scrapped to have hope for a deal.
The letter, sent to the President of the European Council Donald Tusk, led to a furious reaction from Brussels yesterday, when the block doubled on his insistence that the existing divorce agreement cannot be changed.
Boris delivers a huge poll boost for Tories
Boris Johnson's election as a conservative leader has given the Tories a huge poll, while support for labor and the Brexit party has declined, new data suggest.
A survey conducted by KantarTNS between August 15 and 19 places the Tories at 42 percent – 17 points higher than the company's latest poll in May.
Meanwhile, labor is 28 percent – six points lower than in May – while the Brexit party only has five percent – five points lower than the previous survey.
The Liberal Democrats remain stuck at 15 percent with the election of Jo Swinson as leader last month who apparently did nothing to increase the party's fortune.
The final poll and 14 points ahead of Jeremy Corbyn's Labor party is welcomed by Downing Street as proof that Mr. Johnson's hardline Brexit attitude has paid off since he took office at the end of July.
The 42 percent rating for the Tories allows the party to return to the kind of support level the party last saw at the 2017 general election.
Under the leadership of Theresa May, the conservatives received 42.4 percent of the vote during the snap poll.
But even that wasn't enough to save her Commons majority, because Labor managed to get an unexpected 40 percent of the vote and the nation returned a suspended parliament.
If the latest polls were to be repeated in the next few weeks in a general election, Mr. Johnson could secure a Tory majority of 192 seats based on models from the Electoral Calculus website.
The kind of reception that Mr. Johnson expected to receive in Berlin was illustrated by Florian Hahn, European policy spokesperson for Mrs Merkel's party, who said to The Times: & # 39; no new negotiations can and will not take place.
& # 39; It is completely impossible for the backstop to be removed or mitigated from the agreement.
& # 39; The only possible offer would be to agree on a more precise language for the political statement on the future relationship between the EU and the UK after the Brexit. But I fear that this will not be enough for Boris Johnson. & # 39;
Norbert Röttgen, another ally of Mrs Merkel, who is in charge of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the German Parliament, echoed similar sentiment in The Guardian's comments.
He said: & # 39; The letter to the President of the European Council is not a serious offer and Boris Johnson knows. & # 39;
He added: & # 39; If Johnson really wanted to achieve something during his visits to Paris and Berlin, he would be advised against writing this letter. & # 39;
Meanwhile, a senior German official, asked by Politico, replied what Mrs. Merkel Johnson would offer to Brexit: & # 39; Nothing. & # 39;
Johnson said yesterday that he would have talks with Mrs. Merkel and Mr. Macron with great praise, but both sides refused to admit and remain stuck in a stalemate state.
Mr Johnson's allies believe that his difficult message that a No Deal split will take place, unless the EU agrees to drop the backstop, has hit hard in Brussels.
But many in the EU remain skeptical as to whether Johnson would actually continue with a bad break given the risk that it would cause serious economic damage.
With only 71 days until the Halloween deadline, there is not a single significant movement from Brussels that sets up a potentially loaded eleventh-hour dash to prevent a chaotic divorce in the run-up to October 31.
Johnson spoke to reporters yesterday and reiterated his opposition to the backstop.
He said: & # 39; Remember why we all do this. The existing agreement simply does not work for the UK. And Parliament has thrown it away three times.
& # 39; We cannot have this backstop. So I'm going to our friends and partners – I'm going to Germany and then to France, and then to see the G7 in Biarritz, and I'm going to make the point that the backstop is going to come out. & # 39;
Mr Johnson's journey to Berlin and then to Paris was designed to try to prevent the Brexit from overshadowing the G7 summit taking place this weekend.
In his letter to Mr. Tusk, Mr. Johnson said that the backstop should be removed from the divorce agreement before the Brexit deadline of October 31.
But Mr. Tusk defended the measure and warned that the scrapping involved a return to a hard border.
Downing Street said that unless the backstop is abolished & # 39; there is no prospect of a deal & # 39; between the two parties.
Mr. Tusk suggested that number 10 was unrealistic and accused Mr. Johnson of being unfair.
He said: & # 39; The backstop is insurance to prevent a hard border on the island of Ireland unless and until an alternative is found.
& # 39; Those who are against the backstop and do not propose realistic alternatives, support the restoration of a border. Even if they don't admit it. & # 39;
A letter from Mr. Johnson to Donald Tusk explaining his tough negotiating position went badly with the EU. Mr Tusk looked very relaxed yesterday, despite the countdown of the Brexit after posting a photo of him sitting on a hammock while taking care of a baby and a dog
In response, Mr. Johnson said: & # 39; We think there is now a great opportunity for everyone to come together to take that backstop. & # 39;
He added: "We will look at all the ways in which we can maintain frictionless trading on the Northern Irish border – be it trusted trader arrangements, or electronic pre-clearing, or whatever it is, all that kind of thing," checks away from the border, points of sale or whatever if you have to smuggle all those kinds of things – but we'll come up with those solutions, or come up with those solutions, I should say, in the context of the free trade agreement.
& # 39; That is how we will approach it. And you know, right now it's absolutely true that our friends and partners are a little negative.
& # 39; I saw what Donald Tusk had to say and it was not an exaggeration of a sense of optimism. But I think we'll get there. & # 39;
Johnson is convinced that alternative arrangements can be found to have the backstop removed and give the deal a chance to be approved by MPs.
Mr. Tusk responded to Twitter on Mr. Johnson and suggested that the British Prime Minister was unrealistic in his questions
The backstop was included in Mrs May's original Brexit deal as a last resort to use in the event that no general trade agreement has been concluded between both parties at the end of a transitional period.
It would effectively enforce existing EU customs rules to ensure that frictionless trade on the island can continue and prevent the return of a hard border.
But Brexiteers hate it because, if implemented, it would last indefinitely, limit the UK's ability to close its own trade deal, and to get out of it would require the consent of both parties.
Johnson has repeatedly used the protocol & # 39; anti-democratic & # 39; because he won the keys to Downing Street last month.
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