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Express: ‘The EU is BROKEN’

Date: 25 07 2017

‘The EU is BROKEN’ Tory MEP hits out at Brussels over ‘nonsensical’ Brexit divorce bill

A TORY Leave campaigner has scolded Brussels over a possible “nonsensical” Brexit bill, putting the prospect of one down to the EU “being broke”.

East of England MEP David Campbell Bannerman spoke of the hurdles faced by the Government in the first rounds of the exit talks on citizens’ rights and the potential cost of breaking from the bloc.

He said signals from the European Union about reciprocal citizens’ rights were “very mean” before blasting Brussels over the “logic” behind an exit bill.

The politician told Sky News: “I think it’s very mean of them to suggest UK citizens in Spain or Ireland cannot go elsewhere around the EU, surely this has to be reciprocal.

“There are difficulties but this is a negotiation and you will get different positions which we work through.

“I think more seriously what could completely be the brick wall on these talks in my view is the issue of cash, you can’t just say this is what we think you owe us without any real argument behind it.”

But the Leave Means Leave board member agreed the UK should honour its commitments until March 2019 after dismissing reported figures.

He said: “The British Government is arguing for how are you getting to any figures – €60billion, €100bn, I think it’s nonsensical.

“I think we should pay our fees as long as we’re a member and it’s £19bn gross a year, £38bn over two years of this Article 50 process that we are committed to but anything more than that I just don’t understand the logic of it – apart from the EU being broke potentially.”

Also appearing on the news channel was the executive director of Open Britain, James McGrory, who slammed the Government’s approach to negotiations.

He said: “The Foreign Secretary told Europe they can ‘go whistle’ [for a Brexit bill] which I thought was, from the supposed senior diplomatic voice in this country, hugely ill-judged – regardless of your views on Europe, these are our closest allies.”

July 25th, 2017: Express