, 9 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
Lots of talk about EU changing its position on #Brexit. Are they? Short thread
1. Consistency: “May’s” deal is outcome of *months* of negotiations - where both sides gave in. If UK wants to improve it, then UK must be one to table proposals - and these must respect SM & solve border. Y’day, @MichelBarnier said EU had not seen any.
2. Backstop: EU always said backstop wd only apply “unless and until” alternatives were found- but these alternatives don’t exit yet! So their view is backstop needs to stay.
3. [Reminder: EU don’t like backstop either ... and UK-wide CU was considered a UK win].
4. Caution: EU ready to hold talks, but that does not mean they will result in a deal. Room for manoeuvre is small - compromise tricky. So EU somewhere between optimistic and pessimistic.
5. Nuance: some EU leaders more hopeful after PM’s EU visits - but negotiators in Brussels (who know deal inside out and all technicalities) more cautious (cfr @MichelBarnier address y’day). And they act on behalf on EU27 so are in *regular* contact with EU leaders.
6. Extension: EU want a deal but will be thinking carefully about purpose & terms of extension. Extension wd delay a no deal, not take it off the table. EU do not want to face same scenario in 3 months time..
7. Basically, same continuous problem: how to reach a deal that works for EU & UK? Revert back to NI-only backstop (need DUP on board)? NI provisions (need EU on board)? Tricky. All sides must move.
8. Really too early to say: talks are happening but unclear where they will lead. And time is short. Tick tock. END.
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