Macron Says Pro-Brexit Politicians ‘Liars’, Rejects May ‘Chequers’ Plan

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JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty
LIAM DEACON

Politicians who have been positive about Brexit are “liars” and other nations should not consider leaving the European Union (EU) because they will suffer like the UK, Emmanuel Macron has said.

The decision of the British people was “pushed by those who predicted easy solutions”, the French president said.

“Those people are liars. They left the next day so they didn’t have to manage it.”

He reiterated: “Those who explain that we can easily live without Europe, that everything is going to be alright, and that it’s going to bring a lot of money home are liars.”

Adding: “It’s even more true since they left the day after so as not to have to deal with it.”

The extraordinary attack, at the close of the EU Salzburg summit, is likely aimed at Vote Leave leaders like former foreign secretary Boris Johnson and environment secretary Michael Gove, and possibly former UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

President Macron also said Mrs May’s proposals for a soft Brexit, with the UK tied all the bloc’s rules on goods, was not good enough and implied it could harm the integrity of the bloc.

“It was a good and brave step by the prime minister,” Macron told reporters. “But we all agreed on this today, the proposals in their current state are not acceptable, especially on the economic side of it,” he said.

“The Chequers plan cannot be ‘take it or leave it,'” he added.

The French President’s comments were backed up by the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, who said May’s Brexit plan will “not work”.

“It must be clear that there are some issues where we are not ready to compromise, first off the four fundamental freedoms, the Single Market, this is why we remain sceptical of Chequers,” Mr Tusk said.

He added: “The Irish question remains our priority too and for this we need only goodwill – which we feel, the atmosphere was better than two or three weeks ago – but the Irish question needs something more than good intentions.”

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