Leading MEP tells UK politicians to stop describing EU as 'the enemy'

Nathalie Loiseau, the former French minister European Affairs

Nathalie Loiseau, the former French minister European Affairs - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

A leading MEP in the European Parliament has passionately defended the European Union, and told UK politicians to stop describing the bloc as "the enemy".

Nathalie Loiseau, a French MEP and formerly France's minister for European affairs, said that both sides owe it to their people to "build a strong partnership for our future".

And she urged politicians in the UK to drop the rhetoric over Brexit, as she explained the point of the EU's fisheries policy.

She told Sophy Ridge on Sunday: "We are partners, we are not there to be adversaries for our future.

"I would definitely like to see UK politicians refraining from using rhetoric or a vocabulary as if we were adversaries fighting against each other.

"We are struggling to build a strong partnership for our future. This is what we owe to our fellow citizens on both sides."

Louiseau said she was "neither optimistic or pessimistic" about the prospect of a trade deal before the transition period ends on December 31.

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She said: "We will do everything we can to get a good deal, whether it is possible under this time pressure, honestly I don't know. I will not tell you we are nearly there because there are still big divergences.

"We are offering an unprecedented partnership with the UK, but this comes with clarity and commitments, and so far they are missing."

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