It’s time to get the next phase of Brexit negotiations started, says Charles Michel
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    It’s time to get the next phase of Brexit negotiations started, says Charles Michel

    The President of the European Council Charles Michel congratulated British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory on Friday morning. Credit: Belga.

    The President of the European Council Charles Michel congratulated British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory on Friday morning and urged the British Parliament to ratify the Brexit Agreement.

    “We are now awaiting early ratification by the British Parliament [of the divorce agreement negotiated between the British Government and the rest of the EU] in order to start negotiations for the next phase in a calm manner,” said Michel on his arrival on the second day of the Brussels European Summit, where Brexit is on the agenda.

    For this second phase of negotiations, he called for respect for the integrity of the internal market and fair competition in order to reach an agreement on a “close relationship with the European Union”.

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    Johnson’s Conservative Party secured victory in the UK parliamentary elections, earning a decisive majority which he said sets Britain on track for an “irrefutable” Brexit by 31 January.

    Exit polls on Friday confirmed predictions that the Tories would sail past the 326 seats required for a majority in the House of Commons, with live counting by the BBC showing that the Conservatives had secured 364 seats out of the total of 650.

    Johnson, whose success was largely credited to his strong “get Brexit done” campaign, hailed victory in a speech on Friday, expressing joy at having received a “new powerful mandate” to achieve Brexit.

    Jules Johnston
    The Brussels Times