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LONDON – Britain and the European Union will get Brexit negotiations underway on Monday as initially planned, according to reports.
The UK government’s Brexit Secretary David Davis and the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, agreed on Thursday that official divorce talks will begin Monday, June 19, sources in Brussels told POLITICO.
The thinking among British officials is that kicking off the negotiations on Monday will be in keeping with the original timetable. It will also allow May to attend a summit of EU leaders next week with exit talks already underway.
There was speculation that chaos in Britain, caused by last week’s shock general election outcome, would lead to Brexit negotiations being delayed. Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservative Party won more seats than any other party – including Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party – but not enough to keep its parliamentary majority.
This means Britain is currently without an official government.
However, this turmoil does not appear to have deterred May, who intends to lead Britain into talks with EU figures next week, while back home she tries to arrange a minority government deal with Northern Irish party the DUP.
May is not expected to announce an agreement with the DUP until next week.