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On behalf of Parliament’s political group leaders, EP President Martin Schulz expressed in a letter to European Council President Donald Tusk his disappointment at the way the draft conclusions of the 27 Heads of State or Government relegate Parliament “to a secondary position in the Brexit negotiation process”.

 If the Parliament’s “secondary role” were to be confirmed, it cannot exclude deciding to “draw up its own detailed arrangements governing its interaction” with the EU negotiator, Michel Barnier, and the UK government.


In the letter, the President of the European Parliament urges President Tusk to fully involve Parliament in the Brexit negotiations and to modify the draft conclusions proposed to the 27 Heads of State or Government accordingly.


President Schulz reminds President Tusk that it could not be excluded that MEPs could reject any outcome of the negotiations at the end, which would “result not in the status quo (as would be the case for any other international agreement) but the EU Treaties simply ceasing to apply to the UK at the end of the two year period.” “This would be the very hardest of Brexits and to the detriment of everybody” he adds. The European Parliament is, besides the House of Commons, the only Parliament which has the power to ratify or not the agreement.


“These are perhaps the most important negotiations the EU will ever have to undertake. They will affect (...) quite possibly whether the EU will continue to exist in its present form”. Schulz also reminded Tusk that the European Parliament was fully involved in the negotiations of the Lisbon Treaty ten years ago.


The Conference of Presidents (EP President and political groups’ leaders) “strongly believe that the EU Institutions and the 27 Member States must remain strongly united during the negotiations” and “the Parliament is a very willing partner to contribute to this united front”, as stressed in the letter.