Former UKIP leader Nigel Farage has described EU leaders as “gangsters,” as the European Parliament adopted a resolution setting the red lines for the Brexit negotiations.
Echoing recent draft guidelines, the Parliament wants talks on the UK’s future relationship with the EU to start only after “substantial progress” has been made on key issues.
But there is no indication in the text of Brexit costs for Britain.
“All commitments have to be taken on board, all liabilities have to be on the table, also the contingent liabilities,” said Guy Verhofstadt, the Parliament’s Brexit negotiator.
“Well, it will be easy at the end, because if you agree on the principles, than you apply the principles and you have the figure. So that’s the reason why you don’t find the figure in the resolution, but a clear principle on how to deal with the financial settlement.”
But Eurosceptic Farage was quick to criticise a possible hefty divorce bill, which he puts at tens of billions.
“They’re gangsters, they’re gangsters,” he said.
“They are saying look, you give us 60 billion euros or we are not even gonna talk to you. It’s a figure that has been clearly plucked out of the air. It has absolutely no basis in the Treaties because we have triggered Article 50 and in two years time we have no future liabilities.”
The resolution’s text was backed by more than two thirds of the deputies in the parliament – which will have to approve any deal with the UK.