Boris Johnson cancels press conference in Luxembourg due to ‘stop Brexit’ protests
PUBLISHED: 13:55 16 September 2019 | UPDATED: 15:10 16 September 2019
Boris Johnson has been forced to cancel his outdoors press conference in Luxembourg after anti-Brexit protesters turned up to greet him.
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The prime minister was met with a sea of noise as he arrived and left a restaurant in Luxembourg the meeting with European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker for their first face-to-face talks.
"Stop the coup. Tell the truth" and "Bog off Boris!" were among the loudest cries in the barrage directed at the prime minister after he left a two-hour lunch alongside the EU's chief.
The noise from the anti-Brexit protesters meant that an outdoors press conference planned with the prime minister of Luxembourg had to be cancelled.
Juncker said the talks with the PM were "friendly" and negotiations will proceed "at high speed", but there was little public sign of a breakthrough.
The commission said the government had still not made "legally operational solutions" to replace the controversial Irish backstop element of the Brexit divorce deal, which keeps the UK closely tied to EU rules in order to avoid a hard border.
While the venue for the talks was closed to the public, Remain campaigners calling for Brexit to be stopped drowned out questions from the press.
One of those in attendance was Anthea MacDonald, a retired teacher who has gained dual citizenship from Luxembourg since the referendum.
She told PA: "I think the whole referendum was based on a pack of lies.
"And as time has gone on, more and more people have come to realise that they would rather Remain."
A police officer approached the protesters to politely ask them to move on.
He asked the crowd which side of the debate they were on.
"We want to stay in the EU," they told him.
"Good," he replied, sticking two thumbs up and grinning.
Johnson tried to laugh off the yells, hisses and anti-Brexit cries of pro-EU demonstrators as he met with Luxembourg's prime minister Xavier Bettel.
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