Nicola Sturgeon has raised Scottish concerns over Brexit in a meeting with chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier. The first minister said they held a “constructive and positive discussion” during her trip to Brussels. She said she told Mr Barnier that the Scottish government believed the UK should remain within the customs union and single market after leaving the EU.
Chancellor Philip Hammond has criticized claims from European Union officials that Britain has a “fantasy” approach to Brexit negotiations. Mr Hammond insisted that talks with EU officials were “constructive” after reports from the continent that Britain was being “unrealistic” and little progress made in discussions in recent days.
Italy’s two anti-establishment parties promised on Friday to ramp up spending in a program for a new coalition government, putting them on a collision course with the European Union despite having dropped some of their most radical proposals.
The European Union could offer Britain a closer relationship after Brexit if Prime Minister Theresa May decides to stay in the bloc’s customs union, diplomats said. EU hopes London could change its stance on what ties it wants after Brexit after Britain’s upper house of parliament challenged the government on a key bill relating to May’s plan to quit the customs union.
European Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan insisted there would be no deal with Mercosur unless negotiators are fully satisfied strong standards will apply to all produce. It comes as another round of the negotiations on Mercosur got under way in Brussels this week.
The European Union is unlikely to accept the UK's latest proposal for avoiding a “hard border” on the island of Ireland after Brexit, the Irish government has said. Theresa May has said 80% of firms would face no new customs checks between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic and others would be simplified.
The new pro-independence speaker of Catalonia's parliament on Thursday started meeting party representatives to pick a regional president, with exiled former leader Carles Puigdemont in the lead for the post.
Among the sanctioned are the number two of the government, Diosdado Cabello; Néstor Reverol, minister of Justice and Maikel Moreno, president of the Supreme Court of Justice. These are new individual sanctions, which include the freezing of assets and the prohibition to travel to the countries of the European bloc to at least seven senior Venezuelan officials.
Chancellor Angela Merkel struck a deal with Social Democrat (SPD) rivals on Friday to open government coalition talks, easing months of uncertainty that has undermined Germany’s global role and raised questions about her political future. But the deal to revive a “grand coalition” that has governed since 2013 must be approved by an SPD congress planned for January 21.
Belgian security forces shot dead a would-be suicide bomber around 9 p.m. local time Tuesday in Brussels' central train station, which was evacuated following a small but fiery blast, in what is being treated as a new case of terrorism. Apart from the attacker, there were no other casualties, it was reported.