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Johnson to meet EU chief amid ‘wide gap’ on Brexit

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Friday that he would on Monday discuss Brexit with the outgoing European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker.

This is following Ireland premier’s statement that the two sides remained far apart on a possible deal.

According to Downing Street, Johnson will discuss Brexit with Juncker over a “working lunch“ in Luxembourg, where he will also meet Luxembourg’s Prime Minister, Xavier Bettel.

Johnson said on Thursday that he believed the two sides could still agree a last-minute deal to smoothen Britain’s withdrawal from the EU on Oct. 31.

He, however, said that his government would continue to plan for the possibility of leaving without a deal.

The Irish Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, told Ireland’s National Broadcaster (RTE) that “the gap is very wide“between Brussels and London on a possible Brexit deal.

Asked whether he trusts Johnson, amid accusations by British opposition lawmakers that he was merely paying lip service to the Brexit talks, Varadkar said: “I believe when he says he wants a deal on Brexit.

“Johnson is acting in good faith and our teams are in contact and we are exploring what is possible.

“The gap is very wide but we will fight for and work for no-deal until the last moment, but not at any cost.

“And at the same time, we are preparing the country for no-deal if we end up in that scenario.“

YI/YEE

Edited by Yahaya Isah/Emmanuel Yashim

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