The Tory government’s Brexit talks are so shambolic, EU diplomats think it’s an elaborate ploy

David Davis Tory Brexit Immigration

The Conservative government’s Brexit negotiations are so shambolic, EU diplomats think it’s all an elaborate ploy.

One European diplomat told Politico:

I think it’s tactics: They are playing for time on purpose, under the pretext of chaos in London.

The Conservative cabinet remains deeply split over how the Brexit talks should proceed and what the final deal should look like. The infighting has played out in public, with anonymous ministers briefing [paywall] against Chancellor Philip Hammond in the press.

“Put a sock in it”

One of his cabinet colleagues recently told The Guardian:

He needs to put a sock in it, stop undermining the boss and get on with his day job.

Hammond is in fierce disagreement with other ministers about the nature of the post-Brexit transitional deal. The Chancellor reportedly believes [paywall] the transitional period should last two years to give stability to corporations. In contrast, Trade Secretary Liam Fox is leading [paywall] the charge for the swiftest break possible.

The lack of consensus in the Conservative cabinet has translated into chaos in the negotiations. It’s such a mess, other EU diplomats think it must be a strategy. Another told Politico:

Do they have a strategy? Or are they playing a bluff with the European Union? … It could be a strategy because the British are always so organized.

Last week, meanwhile, Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said:

People who say the Brits don’t know what they are doing are wrong. I have lived in Britain, I know the British mentality. A non-prepared British government official simply doesn’t exist.

But the EU negotiating team say they are ‘unconcerned and prepared for anything’, according to Politico. They believe the chaos comes from splits in the Conservative cabinet.

Still, that some EU officials think the chaos must be a ploy is telling. It shows just how shambolic the Conservative government’s Brexit talks really are.

Get Involved!

Join The Canary, so we can keep holding the powerful to account.

Featured image via screenshot

We need your help ...

The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads.

Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion.

We have been fighting against an establishment that is trying to shut us down. And like most independent media, we don’t have the deep pockets of investors to call on to bail us out.

Can you help by chipping in a few pounds each month?

The Canary Support us

Comments are closed