Theresa May’s Brexit stance is ‘clueless’ and ‘damaging’

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May left welcomes President

Theresa May is to meet European Council President Donald Tusk for the first time since becoming United Kingdom prime minister later, with Brexit on the agenda.

Mr. Tusk has been touring European capitals over the last two weeks ahead of a one-day meeting of all EU leaders, without the United Kingdom, in Bratislava on September 16.

The UK government will not provide a “running commentary” on its Brexit negotiations with the EU, Theresa May told MPs this afternoon (7 September).

The petition, which has received the highest number of signatures on the e-petition system, asked for the Government to implement a rule that there should be another referendum on the European Union membership question if the vote failed to achieve the two thresholds.

Ahead of the meeting, Tusk told May that “the ball is now in your court” to start negotiations.

“I have no doubt that at the end of the day our common strategic goal is to establish the closest possible relations”.

A spokeswoman for May said that the British prime minister stressed to work together with Tusk so that there was a “smooth process” for leaving EU.

It comes after Australia and the United Kingdom began “preliminary discussions” about a new trade deal, with Australian trade minister Steven Ciobo predicting an agreement between the countries “when the time is right”.

Leader Tim Farron, whose party campaigned to stay in the European Union, says it would be “completely unfair” if voters were not given a say on the deal devised by Brexit ministers. She acknowledged that those who voted for Brexit were impatient to see June’s referendum decision implemented but insisted that it was essential to approach the negotiations in a “sober and considered” manner.

Her comments came after Downing Street distanced itself from Brexit Secretary David Davis’s suggestion that it is “very improbable” the United Kingdom can remain part of the European single market if it wishes to regain control over its own borders.

May used her first worldwide trip to China this week to outline the first details of what she wants from Brexit after nearly 52 percent of Britons voted to leave the European Union in June.

Mrs May may use her working breakfast with Mr Tusk at No 10 to reaffirm her message that Mr Davis was expressing an opinion rather than Government policy, and that she continues to seek a bespoke model for the UK.

Davis told the House of Commons on Monday it would be “very improbable” that the United Kingdom would retain access to free trade with the 27-member bloc after Brexit if the United Kingdom wanted to regain control over its borders.

Former shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said it was important to know what May values in Brexit negotiations and if she valued membership of the single market.

Mrs May has insisted she will not reveal her negotiating hand “prematurely” and won’t give a “running commentary” on Brexit talks.

But EU leaders have warned that membership of the single market is conditional on Britain accepting the free movement of people.

“The main points that the prime minister made were about working together so that there was a smooth process for the United Kingdom leaving the European Union, that is why we are taking time to prepare for the negotiations”, the spokeswoman told reporters.

But she has also said she will not trigger Article 50, beginning the formal two-year divorce process, this year in order to allow the government time to prepare.