United Kingdom finance minister refuses to detail Brexit position

Posted June 17, 2017

Negotiations on Britain's withdrawal from the European Union will begin between British and EU officials on Monday, the British government said in a statement today.

Brexit negotiators will discuss Monday Britain's financial obligations to the European Union as the long, complicated and potentially perilous process of the United Kingdom leaving the bloc finally gets underway.

Hammond, speaking to reporters before a meeting of the 28 European Union finance ministers on Friday, said Britain should work closely with the bloc to prioritize jobs and prosperity when Brexit talks start next week.

French President Emmanuel Macron said Tuesday that the door was always open for Britain to return while the negotiations on Brexit are under way.

Any deal Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party reaches to prop up British Prime Minister Theresa May must not interfere with devolution in the British province, Ireland's new prime minister said on Friday.

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Both sides are keen to ensure that people and goods keep moving smoothly across the border and that nothing undermines the peace agreement that ended decades of bloody conflict in Northern Ireland.

"We never put timescales on when we expect a deal to be done and I'm not going to start now". "They can't have it both ways, it has to be dealt with sensibly", she said.

On Brexit, Mrs Foster said the DUP wanted to see "a sensible Brexit and one that works for everybody".

The former Northern Ireland First Minister said her meeting with Mr Varadkar was very good and that she was looking forward to a very positive relationship with the Irish premier.

The EU will keep the door open for Britain to return, but only on worse terms than it now has, European Parliament Brexit negotiator Guy Verhofstadt said Wednesday (14 June).

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"We know each other and we understand each other", she said.

Before the Mansion House dinner was cancelled because of the fire, finance minister Hammond had been due to tackle fears among the financial elite that May's insistence that "no deal is better than a bad deal" would cost them business.

Brexit negotiations had been expected to begin next week but May's loss of her parliamentary majority in a general election last week raised doubts about the date.

May's government has said its Brexit plans remain the same, and her Brexit minister David Davis will be pressing for close economic ties but a clear break with the bloc to be able to control immigration and restore sovereignty over British laws.

But as the first senior royal to discuss Brexit, he claimed companies were eyeing fresh opportunities in non-EU markets once Britain leaves the bloc.

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