Dominic Raab has encouraged the European Union to be ‘flexible’ over a deal like the United Kingdom – but he was not able to provide an example of when his government had been so.
Speaking to ITV News, the new foreign secretary said: “There is a deal to be done if the EU shows the pragmatism and flexibility that we’ve shown.”
Asked by the reporter what flexibility has been shown, Raab stutters: “We’ve shown flexibility throughout.”
The reporter asks again: “Give me an example of how this government has been flexible?”
Raab responds: “Well it’s only been in place less than a week but we’ve gone back to the EU and explained we need an end to the undemocratic backstop and there we are willing to keep talking with them. So the lines of communication, the arm of friendship, is extended to the EU. So that’s what we would expect.
“I think on the EU’s side we’ve seen a pretty stubborn and intransigent position.”
The report again points out the UK has failed to compromise too. Raab says: “Oh, no, there’s been plenty of room for pragmatism. We are not throwing away everything, we’ve said there are bits of the withdrawal agreement that are serviceable like on citizens’ rights.”
Raab’s comments seem at odds with the fact that the government are preparing a big advertising blitz for a no-deal Brexit, and Boris Johnson’s spokesperson said that the prime minister would not meet European Union leaders unless they indicate they will scrap the backstop.