Brexit deal: EU launches infringement proceedings against London

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The launch of this procedure is announced when British and European negotiators have been meeting in Brussels since Tuesday, for a decisive round of negotiations on their future trade relationship, which is due to end on Friday.

LEuropean Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Thursday announced that the EU was launching infringement proceedings against the British government over her controversial bill which partly backtracks the Brexit.

“This morning, the Commission decided to send a letter of formal notice to the British government. This is the first step in an infringement procedure ”, announced the German leader. The Europeans had left the United Kingdom until the end of September, that is to say Wednesday, to withdraw their text.

The launch of this procedure is announced when British and European negotiators have been meeting in Brussels since Tuesday, for a decisive round of negotiations on their future trade relationship, which is due to end on Friday.

A European summit opens Thursday in the Belgian capital and EU leaders are to be briefed on the state of negotiations with London.

The United Kingdom “has a period of one month to respond” to the European mail, the Commission said in a press release. “After examining these observations or in the absence of observations, the Commission may, if it deems it appropriate, decide to issue a reasoned opinion”, she adds. The procedure can go to the European Court of Justice.

Questioning of certain commitments

The bill in question, approved by British MPs on Tuesday and which still has to be considered by the Lords in the coming weeks, calls into question certain commitments made by the United Kingdom in the agreement governing its departure from the EU last January 31.

He returns to the provisions for the British province of Northern Ireland, planned to avoid the return of a border with the Republic of Ireland, a safeguard considered essential to the maintenance of peace on the island.

“This bill is, by its very nature, a violation of the duty of good faith provided for in the Withdrawal Agreement. Moreover, if it is adopted as is, it will be in total contradiction with the protocol for Ireland and Northern Ireland ”, underlined Mrs von der Leyen in her short speech.

For British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the aim of the project is to defend the territorial integrity of the United Kingdom by ensuring the continuity of trade between Great Britain and the province of Northern Ireland.

The UK officially left the EU on January 31, but continues to apply EU rules until December 31, a transition period during which London and Brussels hope to agree on a trade deal governing their future relationship. .

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