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Sat, 18 Jan 2020 06:01 GMT

UK PM Contender Hunt Believes he can Unite Conservatives Over Brexit


7Dnews London

Wed, 26 Jun 2019 06:00 GMT

One of the two contenders to replace Prime Minister Theresa May next month, British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt, said on Tuesday, June 25th, he has faith that a Brexit deal is possible with the EU that the Conservative party’s various sides would be united under.

"I think there is a deal that can unite all wings of the Conservative party and our friends in the DUP," he stated as he spoke to the BBC, making a reference to the small Northern Irish party that supports May's government. 

"But it's got to be different to Theresa May's deal," he said, before adding, “We can't put forward a deal to Brussels unless they absolutely know that it could get through the British parliament."

The plan, according to him, is to assign a negotiating team for Brexit, which will present to the EU how any deal can pass through parliament.  

"When I talk to European leaders this is do-able," he said and elaborated that, "One of the reasons that they stopped talking to us before was because they didn't think that the British government would deliver the British parliament. That's what we need to change." 

Moreover, he added that the EU had to trust whoever the UK sent to Brussels to renegotiate the withdrawal deal May hammered out last November and which EU leaders have said they will not change; the cornerstone would be to find a person to present them in Brussels. 

"It has to be someone who isn't going to blink, who's prepared to walk away if we don't get what we needed - I'm prepared to do absolutely that," he added. 

"I don't want us to lose hope. There is a deal to be done. You've just got to make sure that we send the right person to get it." 

Earlier on Tuesday, front-runner Johnson challenged Hunt to commit to leaving the European Union on October 31st, regardless if there is a deal or not.  

Johnson said, for his part, he had been clear he would leave on that date regardless. 

However, Hunt said to the BBC that he sees the cut-off date of October 31st "come hell or high water" as a fake deadline. 

"I think we'll know very soon, well before 31st October, if there is a deal to be done along with the basis I've said," he added. 

"And I'm very clear that if we haven't got the prospect of a deal that can (get) through parliament by that date, then (leaving without a deal) is the option I'll choose."