Ex-Trump strategist Bannon says EU is trying to thwart Brexit

OXFORD, England (Reuters) - U.S.

Reuters November 17, 2018 05:05:37 IST
Ex-Trump strategist Bannon says EU is trying to thwart Brexit

ExTrump strategist Bannon says EU is trying to thwart Brexit

OXFORD, England (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump’s former political strategist, Steve Bannon, said on Friday that the European Union was trying to thwart Brexit.

Bannon, a former chairman of the right-wing Breitbart.com website and an architect of Trump’s 2016 election win, has set up a movement to elect right-wing nationalist and populist members in European Parliament elections next May.

The EU's elites, he said, did not want Brexit.

"You see what's happened. They have no intention of letting you guys leave - none. Zero," Bannon said at the Oxford Union debating society, though he gave no evidence other than saying the EU had made the divorce negotiation difficult.

"They've made it as hard as possible, they will continue to make it as hard as possible," Bannon said.

The United Kingdom is due to leave the EU on March 29, 2019. In the June 23, 2016 EU referendum, 17.4 million voters, or 52 percent, backed Brexit while 16.1 million, or 48 percent, backed staying in the bloc.

EU leaders have repeatedly said they are saddened by the UK's decision to leave and that they will respect the decision.

British Prime Minister Theresa May struck a divorce deal with the EU this week, though opponents in her divided party are trying to topple her because they think the deal would keep the UK too close to the EU after Brexit.

Bannon faced several hundred protesters in Oxford who accused him of being a racist. Police officers eventually escorted the 64-year-old into the Oxford University society's historic debating chamber through a back entrance.

(Reporting by Jack Hunter, editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.