Boris Johnson presents his plan for the Brexit in the UK Parliament on Thursday, before intense talks to convince cautious Europeans to accept his bid as the only alternative to an exit without agreement in four weeks.
The Prime Minister, who promised to carry out the Brexit "whatever happens" on October 31, put pressure on Brussels by sending the EU a compromise presented as a final offer.
But to avoid a divorce without agreement with potentially disastrous economic consequences, he will also have to secure the support of a Parliament that had rejected the text negotiated by Theresa May three times and where he lost his majority.
After having gathered the highest members of his government on Thursday morning at Downing Street, the Conservative leader has to answer from 11:30 am (10H30 GMT) to the questions of the deputies on his plan, supposed to solve the complex case of the North-Irish border. on which the negotiations between London and Brussels are
This session promises to be animated after rare virulence exchanges last week illustrating the climate of political crisis prevailing in the country more than three years after the victory of the "leave" ("out") in the referendum.
Interviewed by ITV on Wednesday evening, Michael Gove, minister in charge of preparations for an exit without agreement, said the plan had "very good chances to pass" in the British Parliament.
But the head of the main opposition Labor Party, Jeremy Corbyn, said Boris Johnson's plan was "worse" than that negotiated by former Prime Minister Theresa May: "I do not see how it is can get the support he expects to get, "he said in a video posted on his Twitter account.
On the Brussels side, the project is being examined with caution. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has acknowledged "positive progress" but stressed that there remain "some problematic issues that will require additional work in the coming days".
- "Go forward" -
Boris Johnson's plan calls for Northern Ireland to leave the European customs union, like the rest of the United Kingdom, but for the British province to continue to enforce EU rules on the movement of goods, including food and drink , with the creation of a "Regulatory Area" on the Island of Ireland, subject to the agreement of the Parliament and the North Irish Executive.
This would eliminate all regulatory controls between Northern Ireland and Ireland but this would imply divergent regulations between the British province and the rest of the Kingdom.
Meetings between European and British negotiators are planned in Brussels in the coming days. The Europeans want to know if Boris Johnson is "ready to move and act" on the issues that are problematic, said another diplomat.
Having come to power at the end of July, Boris Johnson committed to getting his country out of the EU at any cost on October 31, a deadline that was postponed twice.
Determined to achieve the Brexit, for which the British voted 52% in the referendum of June 2016, he repeated that he would not ask for a further delay to the EU, even if the Parliament passed a law imposing on him postpone Brexit if it does not reach an agreement with the EU by October 19, just after the next EU summit.
"We need to move forward at a good pace, intensely," Brexit Minister Steve Barclay told BBC Thursday morning, stressing the need for both parties to engage in talks by the end of the day. weekend to reach an agreement.
The minister was optimistic: "The answer of the (European) Commission is that they think it is a serious proposal and I believe that both parties want to reach an agreement".
© 2019 AFP