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Donald Tusk: UK has not put forward a “realistic proposal”

© Andrzej Barabasz

Donald Tusk issued a statement today following positive talks between Boris Johnson and Leo Varadkar which led to a renewed sense of optimism over the possibility of an agreement on a Brexit deal.

So far, the EU has rejected the proposals that the UK has put forward despite a number of concessions over the Irish border. However, after crunch talks between Johnson and Varadkar, it looked like a deal was going to be possible, and even an agreement could be reached before a crucial summit in a week’s time.

Tusk said today that it was the final chance for Boris Johnson to put forward a Brexit proposal and acknowledged there had been progress and reason for some optimism. However, Tusk played down the possibility of a deal with nearly no time left and still huge divisions between the EU and UK negotiating teams.

Leo Varadkar said there was a “pathway” to an agreement but Tusk concluded today that “time was practically up” and so far there wasn’t a “realistic proposal” on the table that could be the foundation for a possible deal. After a turbulent call between Johnson and German Chancellor Angela Merkel earlier this week, it looked as if a Brexit deal was no longer possible. And it may still well be the case, however in the last 24 hours the pound his skyrocketed against the dollar and the euro, and there could be further rallies ahead in this “do or die” week for negotiations.

Can the EU and the UK get an agreement in time?