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Davis wants legal clarification from European Union over Brexit payout

31 August 2017

It was hoping the papers would persuade the European Union that talks about the future relationship should be brought forward, arguing that divorce issues such as the Irish border will be easier to settle once the terms of a trade deal are clear.

Brexit secretary David Davis and Mr Barnier met on Monday for the latest round of talks.

"For him to suggest, with more than a week of negotiations still to take place, that sufficient progress will not have been made by October to allow talks to begin on Britain's future relationship with the European Union, is premature and way beyond his pay grade".

The thorny issue of the bill was tackled in this round of negotiations but the raft of position documents Britain published in the lead-up to talks didn't include a paper on how it proposed to calculate the financial settlement of the divorce.

Defending the UK's position papers from criticism by Barnier, Davis said they were the product of "hard work and detailed thinking that has been going on behind the scenes" for the a year ago. "We want to lock in the points where we agree, unpick the areas where we disagree and make further progress on the whole range of issues", Davis said.

USA airstrikes block evacuation of Islamic State militants
But officials of the USA -led coalition said they will continue to monitor the convoy and aren't ruling out more airstrikes. U.S. officials confirmed the airstrikes took place to prevent buses carrying armed ISIS fighters continuing eastward.

The U.K.is set to leave the EU in March 2019 after the majority of the British voted in favor of the country leaving the union via a referendum past year.

Officials from Brussels and the United Kingdom were continuing negotiations in the latest round of the withdrawal process, but Juncker's comments are further evidence of the European Union's frustration with the approach being taken by the PM and Brexit Secretary David Davis.

Both Barnier and Juncker have been steadfast in their insistence that talks on future trade can not begin until the divorce bill has been settled but the Times reports there may be sympathy for Britain among some member states. But the bloc must avoid "falling into the trap" as the "responsibility is entirely on the Turkish side", he said.

Pressed on whether the strategy would be changed if no progress is made to end the deadlock this week, the spokeswoman said: 'Let's see what David Davis has to say on Thursday'.

But Mrs May's spokesman fired back: "We believe we're in a good position and we would like to move on to discuss our future relationship". Recent reports suggest the total figure could be around £30 billion.

Davis wants legal clarification from European Union over Brexit payout