British Prime Minister Boris Johnson arrived for crisis talks over dinner in Brussels with the European Union’s chief executive on Wednesday, amid mounting concern that Britain is heading for a turbulent break-up with the bloc in three weeks.
“Allons-y,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said to Johnson, using a French term for “let’s go” as they headed off for dinner in the star-shaped 1960s modernist Berlaymont building, headquarters of the EU’s executive.
“Allons-y,” Johnson replied.
Before this brief exchange the two leaders greeted each other and took masks off for photographs.
Both sides have cast the meeting as a chance to unlock the stalled trade talks but acknowledge there is a danger that there may be no trade deal in place when Britain finally leaves the EU’s orbit on Dec. 31. (Reporting by Robin Emmott and John Chalmers)