The EU must be “unyielding” in the face of Britain’s demands on the terms for its divorce from the bloc, said Luxembourg’s former PM and current European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker on Friday.
“You can’t have one foot in and one foot out,” he told a conference in Paris, warning that Britain risked “trampling everything that has been built” over six decades of European integration.
“We must be unyielding on this point. I see the manoeuvring (by Britain),” Juncker said.
His remarks were aimed at British Prime Minister Theresa May who said Wednesday she wanted an exit deal that offered Britain “maximum freedom” to operate in Europe’s single market while also maintaining control over immigration.
May has said she will trigger negotiations with Brussels to leave the EU before the end of March.
Her remarks on immigration have sparked fears of a “hard Brexit”, sending the pound into a tailspin and setting the stage for a showdown with European leaders.
French President Francois Hollande warned Thursday Britain would have to pay “a price” for its decision to leave the EU.