French Minister: New Jan. 31 Brexit Date ‘Not Negotiable’

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A Union flag waves against the backdrop of the clock facade of the Elizabeth Tower, which holds the bell known as “Big Ben”, in London, Friday. (AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali)

Sunday, November 3, 2019 at 8:15 am 

A French minister said that the new Brexit date of Jan. 31 “is not negotiable” and “the risk of a no-deal Brexit remains.”

Minister for European Affairs Amelie de Montchalin told Europe 1 radio on Sunday that she’s advising French companies to continue preparing for a scenario in which Britain leaves the bloc on Jan. 31 without a divorce deal, despite getting a three-month Brexit extension from the European Union.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson had promised to take Britain out of the EU by Oct. 31 with or without a deal but the British Parliament blocked his plans. Now Britain is holding a Dec. 12 election and Johnson hopes to get a more Brexit-friendly Parliament.

Montchalin defended France’s earlier fight not to extend the Brexit deadline, saying French businesses and families needed “clarity” on the issue.

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