Irish foreign minister says gap still very wide in EU-UK talks

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There is still a path to a trade deal between Britain and the European Union, but the British government needs to “reframe the arguments that they’ve been making to themselves” on sovereignty, Ireland’s Foreign Minister said on Thursday.

“Politics has the capacity to find a way forward in my view if the motivation is there to do that,” Simon Coveney told Ireland’s RTE radio in an interview.

“I think everyone wants to try to find a way of getting a deal. The problem is the gap is still very wide.” 

Britain is “working tirelessly” to secure a trade deal with the European Union but the two sides remain far apart on several issues, British minister Penny Mordaunt said on Thursday, adding that there was “hope”.

“It is clear that we remain far apart on the so-called level playing field, fisheries and governance,” Mordaunt, paymaster general, told parliament.

“We are working tirelessly to get a deal but we cannot accept a deal at any cost. We cannot accept a deal that will compromise the control of our money, our laws, our borders and our fish.” 

Main Photo: British and European flags ahead of Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson visit to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on post Brexit trade deal talks, in Brussels, Belgium, 09 December 2020. . EPA-EFE/OLIVIER HOSLET / POOL

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