Theresa May is facing fresh calls from hardline Brexiteers to walk away from the negotiating table if EU leaders refuse to sanction the start of the second phase of the Brexit talks at their December summit.
A series of prominent Tories including Jacob Rees-Mogg, John Redwood and former chancellor Lord Lawson have signed a letter urging the Prime Minister to refuse to settle the UK’s “divorce bill” with the EU unless Brussels agrees to a series of new demands.
These include settling the terms of a free trade agreement “in principle” by the end of March 2018 and an end to the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice and the freedom of movement to the UK for EU nationals when the UK leaves a year later on March 30 2019.
“If the EU refuses to agree to these terms by the end of the December council, the UK – having exhausted every avenue – should suspend its participation in the negotiations and inform the EU that, unless they are prepared to talk to us seriously about a future free trade arrangement, we will revert to World Trade Organisation terms from March 30 2019,” the letter states.
The letter was organised by the Leave Means Leave group.
Other signatories include Conservative former ministers Owen Paterson and David Jones and the Labour MP Graham Stringer.