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EU gives Britain ’12 days’ to decide on Brexit

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Boris Johnson has reportedly been given just 12 days to present the European Union with a viable Brexit deal or prepare for a No Deal Brexit.

UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. PHOTO: PA

The Prime Minister has been given until September 30 to submit an alternative to the Irish border backstop in writing to Brussels.

The ultimatum was hammered out at a meeting between French President Emmanuel Macron and Finnish PM Antti Rinne in Paris today, reports in Finland claim.

However, it is unclear if the deadline will be backed by other European leaders, who would have to come on board with it to enable it to carry any legal weight.

Mr Macron has long been concerned about the time Brexit is taking and has previously spoken against any more extensions.

Mr Rinne, whose country holds the EU council presidency, is reported by DailyMail to have told reporters after the Paris meeting: ‘We are both concerned about what is happening in Britain right now and the confusion that is going on from there to Europe.’

The deadline is likely to create uproar in Westminster with Parliament shut down.

It also falls in the middle of the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, providing an additional headache for Mr Johnson.

It came after Jean-Claude Juncker had earlier trolled Boris Johnson over the bitter row over suspending the Commons – saying the European Parliament is “open and in action'”, the MailOnline reported.

The EU commission chief delivered the jibe as he gave a speech to MEPs in Strasbourg updating them on the Brexit process.

“Mr Juncker said his lunch with Boris Johnson in Luxembourg this week had been ‘friendly’, but he warned he could not “look you in the eye and tell you progress has been achieved”.

Again warning against the harmful consequences of a no-deal Brexit, EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier said during the debate he wants to keep working ‘night and day’ in order to find a satisfying deal for both parties and urged Johnson and his team to make concrete proposals.

Mr Juncker told MEPs: “I said to Prime Minister Johnson that I have no emotional attachment to the safety net, to the backstop, but I stated that I stand by the objectives that it is designed to achieve.

“That is why I called on the Prime Minister to come forward with operational proposals, in writing, for practical steps which would allow us to achieve those objectives.

“Until such time as those proposals have been presented, I will not be able to tell you, looking you straight in the eye, that any real progress has been achieved.”

He added: “Over the past years, the EU has shown great unity of purpose in the Brexit negotiations. Great solidarity with those Member States most affected.

“Unity is our most precious resource and our greatest asset. It will continue to guide me over the next weeks.”

Mr Juncker said there was “very little time remaining” to find a way through the impasse.

This evening Downing Street revealed Mr Juncker spoke to the Prime Minister after the address, where they “discussed the positive and constructive conversation they had in Luxembourg on Monday and their shared determination to reach a deal”.

Vanguard Nigeria News.

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