The UK’s chief Brexit negotiator David Frost condemned the European Union for not offering the UK a fair free trade agreement in a furious letter sent to Brussels. In a stern four-page letter sent to EU counterpart Michel Barnier, Mr Frost accused the bloc of offering the UK a “low-quality trade agreement” which would leave the UK bound by EU laws and regulations. Mr Frost also lashed out at Brussels for slowing down the progress of talks by continuing to put up a number of “unprecedented provisions” to any deal.
Now in an Express.co.uk poll focusing on the latest developments around Brexit, readers have overwhelmingly backed the Prime Minister to walk away from negotiations with the EU.
The poll, which ran from 10am until 9pm on Wednesday, May 20 and saw a huge 15,326 votes cast, asked: “Should Boris just walk away from EU negotiations after Frost letter?”
A huge 96 percent (14,618 readers) backed the Prime Minister to turn his back on negotiations with Brussels.
The remaining four percent (652 people) disagreed, while less than one percent (56 people) voted “don’t know”.
Brexit news: Express.co.uk readers have told the PM to walk away from talks with the EU
Brexit news: Trade talks between the UK and EU began in March
Express.co.uk readers immediately lashed out at the EU and have been infuriated by their tactics during negotiations.
One reader said: “It has all become a major embarrassment. The EU has for years treated us as a weak and pathetic country, bullying and demanding.
“To save further loss of face, we must just leave, and not waste more time trying to make further compromises. We have given them enough.”
A second person commented: “During the last four years there haven’t been any negotiations.
Brexit news: Express.co.uk readers have given their full backing to Boris Johnson
“Just an attempt by the EU to prevent the UK from ever leaving and for the UK to continue to pay for the EU dream to create a federal state of Europe –BUT with never actually informing the people of Europe of this vanity/fantasy project.”
A third reader wrote: “We’ve told them exactly what we want, and they have a little over seven months to agree to it. Any more talk on the matter is a waste of time and resources.
“We should be concentrating on the USA, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea and the rest of the commonwealth. The British public will not accept or condone any capitulation.”
One reader offered Mr Johnson words of advice, and said: “Send the message – we have had enough let them fight among themselves, it is time for Britain to start putting its citizens first and foremost.
“The EU can look after itself!”
Brexit news: Michel Barnier hit back at the UK negotiating team
Brexit news: Boris Johnson wants a trade deal signed with the EU before the end of the transition period
This week, the Government piled the pressure on the EU by publishing 12 draft legal documents, which outline the UK’s vision for a comprehensive free trade agreement.
Mr Frost said: “Overall, at this moment in negotiations, what is on offer is not a fair free trade relationship between close economic partners, but a relatively low-quality trade agreement coming with unprecedented EU oversight of our laws and institutions.
“We find it perplexing that the EU, instead of seeking to settle rapidly a high-quality set of agreements with a close economic partner, is instead insisting on additional, unbalanced, and unprecedented provisions in a range of areas, as a precondition for agreement between us.”
After the documents were made available, Mr Barnier took a swipe at the UK by stating the EU published its papers two months ago and called for more progress to be made in the next round of talks.
Brexit news: The transition period is due to end on December 31, 2020
He wrote on Twitter: “I welcome the UK’s publication of draft legal texts today.
“Transparency is very important in negotiations. The European Commission published a comprehensive legal agreement over two months ago.
“In the next round, we must make tangible progress across all areas.”
The UK and EU have so far held three separate rounds of Brexit talks without making much progress.
Brexit news: David Frost has lashed out at the EU during trade negotiations
The next round of negotiations takes place on June 1 before which time both sides must decide whether to extend the transition period beyond December 31, for up to two years.
But Mr Johnson and his UK negotiating team have continued to insist they will not ask for the transition period to be extended.
Following the latest round of Brexit talks last week, Mr Barnier reiterated the EU would not shift from its so-called red-lines and would seek a level-playing field with the UK.
Mr Frost has insisted the EU’s proposals would “bind this country to EU law or standards” and take away British sovereignty.