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Cameron Veto: Britain's Position 'Would Have Threatened Single Market' Barroso Says

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Mr Barroso Was Speaking In European Parliament Debate On The Collapse Of The Treaty Talks
Mr Barroso Was Speaking In European Parliament Debate On The Collapse Of The Treaty Talks

European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has said Britain's position on a future EU treaty on financial regulation posed a "risk to the integrity of the single market". He was speaking at a meeting of the European Parliament on Tuesday morning, the first meeting of the Parliament to discuss the failure of talks last week to secure an EU-wide treaty.

Describing David Cameron's veto of the treaty as "unfortunate", Mr. Barroso warned that Europe faced a long road ahead to reach a deal which would satisfy all the Eurozone countries.

"Personally, I made every possible effort to agree this fiscal compact fully within the current treaties," he said. "This approach required that all 27 member states played their part. As you know, one member state was opposed to amending the Lisbon treaty."

Some MEPs have given more harsh criticism of David Cameron's position. One French MEP said "26 of the 27 states have shown responsibility", adding that the Prime Minister should be reminded that he has "obligations" to introduce greater financial regulation.

However some MEPs criticised the European Commission for trying to push for a treaty across the whole EU to rescue the Euro in the first place, and UKIP leader Nigel Farage told the EU Parliament that Europe was the Titanic, and Britain's was in a lifeboat.

"Britain is going to make the great escape", he told MEPs, to scattered applause. "Cameron does not know what he has unleashed," he added, suggesting that a process had now started which would lead to a referendum on whether Britain should leave the European Union.

Huffpost UK is following what looks like being a stormy session of the European Parliament with live updates below. The meeting comes as British cabinet ministers are meeting for the first time since Cameron vetoed the EU-wide treaty, a day after Nick Clegg decided to skip a Commons statement and debate on the failure of the talks last week.

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