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Britain has the legal power to withdraw Article 50—it should use it

The former Director General of the EU Council’s legal service says Brexit talks could be heading for collapse

By Jean-Claude Piris  

Photo: NurPhoto/SIPA USA/PA Images

The Brexit mood is turning to optimism. Last December, Britain and the European Union agreed on the issues of citizens’ rights and of money. Last week, a possible transition period was agreed. It would allow Brexit to happen legally on 29th March 2019, but its economic effects to be delayed until January 2021. For Britain, this is much needed.

But there are problems. This transition can happen only if a Withdrawal Agreement (WA) enters into force before 29th March 2019. This is by no means…

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