Sunak to meet von der Leyen on Monday as Brexit deal edges closer
The pair said in a joint statement they will continue to work toward a deal on Northern Ireland.
LONDON — British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will hold face-to-face talks with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on Monday as the two sides crawl toward a deal to resolve post-Brexit trade issues in Northern Ireland.
The pair released a joint statement on Sunday announcing plans for the U.K.-based meeting.
“Today, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen and Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Rishi Sunak agreed to continue their work in person towards shared, practical solutions for the range of complex challenges around the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland," the statement said.
MPs were told last week that they must be in parliament on Monday, raising the prospect a deal between London and Brussels could be imminent. Downing Street has continued to insist over the weekend that a deal has not yet been agreed.
Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab told Sky News on Sunday morning that he hoped an announcement could come in a "matter of days" after Sunak used an interview in the Sunday Times to insist he was “giving it everything we’ve got” to secure a deal with Brussels, and that he was hopeful of a “positive outcome.”
Sunak held talks last week with his own MPs and members of the Democratic Unionist Party, who have block the formation of a devolved power-sharing government in protest at the so-called Northern Ireland protocol arrangements.