EU humiliation plot: Legal action could force Boris to give grovelling apology to Brussels

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The EU has begun legal proceedings against the UK after Boris Johnson refused to ditch plans to override sections of the Brexit divorce deal. The EU’s decision means that Boris Johnson has two options – a grovelling apology to Brussels, or leaving without a deal according to DW correspondent, Barbara Wesel. Ms Wesel said that the UK’s options have been dramatically reduced following Ursula von der Leyen’s decision to launch legal action this morning.

She explained: “There is, with the EU, always wiggle room in cases like this.

“Now the clock starts ticking. The UK will get a letter, they have a chance to write a letter back.

“They can say, ‘We are sorry, we didn’t mean it like that, can we agree that this didn’t happen?’

“They can try to find some face-saving formula. It is doable, but they will have to walk it back.”

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The DW Brussels correspondent continued: “This is not just a legal detail, this is about the future of trade in Ireland.

“This is about keeping borders in Ireland open and keeping Ireland tied to the internal market of the EU. This has to be kept.

“The Ireland Government is very nervous seeing all these shenanigans coming from London.

“Britain will have to choose: they will either leave with a big crash no deal or they will have to compromise and walk this back.”

The legal action comes after an EU deadline for Boris Johnson to remove sections of the Internal Market Bill expired on Wednesday.

Brussels hit out at the Prime Minister for breaching the “good faith” promise both sides signed up to in the agreement struck last year.

The “letter of formal notice” could eventually lead to a court case against the UK at the EU’s top court, the European Court of Justice.


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European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has given the UK until November to respond to the concerns over the draft legislation.

At the same time, UK-EU trade talks are continuing in Brussels this week.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said both sides should “move on” if a deal was not reached by mid-October.

The Commission has also warned it might bring a separate action against the UK through enforcement mechanisms, resulting in fines or suspension of parts of a future trade deal.

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