Brexit: Leaders start arriving for special EU summit

ANI | Updated: Nov 25, 2018 14:02 IST

Brussels [Belgium], Nov 25 (ANI): Leaders from EU's 27-member nations reached the European Council to attend a special meeting that may seal the Brexit withdrawal deal from EU's end.
The 27 EU leaders are expected to endorse the draft Brexit withdrawal agreement and approve the draft political declaration on future EU-UK relations in today's high-stakes meeting.
President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaite, who was one of the first to reach, showed confidence in the European Council passing the withdrawal agreement, even though she highlighted that it wasn't a "perfect" divorce while mentioning that "there's nothing good for any side".
She did not mince words while answering what could happen if the British Parliament were to reject the agreement. She mentioned that at least four scenarios could be possible in the wake of such a situation-a referendum could be held, elections could take place or renegotiations were also a possibility in such a situation.
"We would like to see everything settled as soon as possible," she told the waiting reporters at the Europa building in Brussels.
Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte, on the other hand, stated, "I think that there is an acceptable deal on the table."
Underscoring that "nobody is winning" and that there are no "political winners" from the Brexit, Rutte further mentioned that he had "immense respect" for UK Prime Minister Theresa May for what she has been able to do in the last few weeks.
"This is the max we can all do - There are no victors here today. It is a balanced deal on the table. We all still hate the fact the UK is leaving, but it is a given," the Prime Minister also highlighted while hoping for a 'Yes' vote in the British Parliament on the draft Brexit deal.
Michel Barnier, EU's Chief Brexit negotiator reached the venue and said, "All along this extraordinary decision, I have worked with my team to negotiate with the UK, never against the UK. Now it is time for everybody to take their responsibility. We need to build the next phase of this relationship between UK and EU," he mentioned while stating that the UK will always remain a friend and an ally.
May has shown complete support for the draft deal and has reiterated time and again that the agreement serves UK's national interest.
Earlier yesterday, Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez had stated that the EU nation had reached an agreement over Gibraltar with the UK, allaying fears that had been put to place by Sanchez's earlier comments where he had threatened to vote against the agreement during the summit.
Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council, indicated the gravity of the situation with a tweet on Saturday where he stated, "As a motto for tomorrow, the words of Freddie Mercury, who passed away exactly 27 years ago: 'Friends will be friends, right till the end'."
The citizens of United Kingdom had voted to leave the EU on June 23, 2016, following which the UK had formally notified the European Council of its exit by evoking Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty on March 29, 2017.
The nation will conclusively leave the bloc on March 29, 2019, and enter into a 21-month long transitory period with the EU. (ANI)