"Brits can't block the EU"

The Belgian Premier Charles Michel (Francophone liberal) is satisfied that this morning's agreement on a delay in the departure of the UK from the EU won't paralyse the institutions of the bloc.

The UK and the EU have agreed a flexi-extension to Brexit allowing the UK to remain in the bloc until 31 October, if they so wish, but leave earlier if the UK Parliament can pass the necessary legislation earlier.

With regard to Brexit Belgian Premier Michel's chief concern in recent days has been to ensure that the UK cannot paralyse the activities of the EU.  The UK remains part of the organisation and has a role to play in decision-making.  British Premier May has already suggested she will step down soon and nobody knows who will succeed her and what his or her strategy towards Brexit and the EU will be.

It was a late night, but Belgian Premier was able to sleep on both ears after receiving assurances about his pet concern: "It's important for us to have a guarantee that the Brits cannot use the Brexit extension of their EU membership to exert pressure interfering with the normal activities of EU bodies.  We have received sufficient guarantees that this will not be the case."

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