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Theresa May’s ” Brexit negotiation dinner” with European Union President Jean Claude Junker ended in failure with the EU chief blasting Theresa May as deluded and branding the pro-Brexit British Government as living on a totally different galaxy.
According to multiple accounts of Wednesday night’s dinner, attended by May, Juncker and their negotiating teams, the prime minister’s insistence that talks about the future relationship should start early and that Britain did not owe any money to the EU under the current treaties were met with disbelief from her guests from Brussels.
“Jean-Claude Juncker’s answer was calm and sarcastic,” a source with first-hand information of the meal told the Guardian. “He turned to Michel Barnier [the EU’s chief negotiator], then to Ms May again, and said that contrary to his expectations the next 23 months might be extremely calm in terms of negotiation. He made clear there was no point in having even a first meeting unless the UK accepted the wording of the treaty and the political reality of a united EU27.”
According to a second account of the evening published by the German newspaper, Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung, Juncker’s last words to the prime minister as he left were: “I’m leaving Downing Street 10 times more sceptical than I was before.”
Other sources say that the EU President told Theresa May that there was no need for May to turn up in Europe for her further negotiations because her demands are laughable and will not be tolerated.
Theresa May denies that there was any friction and claims that the dinner was successful.