UK Needs to Be Realistic in Brexit Negotiations

German Chancellor Angela Merkel laid down a tough line for Brexit talks with the U.K., reminding Britain it can’t expect preferential treatment as she warned that some officials in London were harboring “illusions.”

Addressing the German parliament before the remaining 27 European Union leaders meet on Saturday to discuss Britain’s exit, Merkel said the bloc will put its interests first and that talks on departure terms must precede the crafting of a new trade relationship. The EU is heading into the “very complex” negotiations with a strong sense of unity, she said.

“You might think that these things are self-evident, but unfortunately I have to put it in such clear terms because I have the feeling that some in Britain still have illusions about this,” Merkel said in Berlin on Thursday, drawing applause from lower-house lawmakers. “But that would be a waste of time.”


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