The Prime Minister has been handed a Brexit warning by Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel over a future deal between Britain and the bloc. Mr Johnson has vowed to deliver his Brexit withdrawal agreement, already agreed with the EU, if he wins the critical general election on December 12. But, Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel urged Britain to accept the rules of EU single market or face a potential cliff-edge exit in a year’s time, when agreeing to a new future relationship.
While speaking at a London School of Economics event on Wednesday during a trip to a NATO summit near the capital, Mr Bettel said he respected Britain’s decision to leave.
But, he warned Britain could not pick and choose what it wants from the EU in a future agreement.
Mr Johnson has already clearly set out that he does not want Britain to be part of the EU’s single market and accept obligations such as the free movement of people.
Luxembourg’s Prime Minister, Mr Bettel, said the benefits of the single market could not be “cherry picked”, in a future deal.
He said: “The fact is we cannot accept cherry-picking, the fact is you decided to leave.
“I won’t accept that we destroy the single market. We have rules and you will have to accept these rules.”
Mr Bettel accepted the future of Britain’s departure from the bloc depends on the result of the general election next week.
He hinted Brexit was becoming a “poison” for society and Britain’s citizens wanted certainty.
The two leaders greeted at last night’s NATO’s banquet when the tense encounter took place.
Earlier this year, Mr Johnson decided not to turn up to a press conference amid protests during a chaotic visit to Luxembourg.
After a working lunch with the European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, Mr Johnson decided not to speak alongside Mr Bettel.
Mr Bettel continued with the press conference as he gestured towards an empty lectern.
The UK is currently scheduled to leave the European Union at the end of January, but Britain’s withdraw from the bloc hangs in the balance as Britons head to the polls towards the end of next week.
Mr Johnson has vowed to “get Brexit done” and push his agreed withdrawal agreement with the EU through the House of Commons if he is elected.
Writing on Twitter on Wednesday, Mr Johnson wrote: “Folks, we’re having this election because Parliament simply wasn’t working – it was stuck in endless dither and delay.
“The only way we can move forward now is to get Brexit done with a majority Conservative government.”
Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has promised to give Brits another say on leaving the European Union in the form of a fresh referendum if he is elected.
Mr Corbyn has said he will negotiate a new deal with the EU and put it back to the British people within six months while remaining “neutral” on the issue.