EU to Britain: We're in control of Brexit talks, not you
Two days after Britain filed its divorce papers, the European Union made clear Friday that it will be the one to set the pace and terms of the talks. In its first official response to Britain's letter announcing its exit, the EU's draft guidelines for the coming negotiations show that the bloc is willing to discuss a trade deal with Britain - but not until EU leaders feel that "sufficient progress" has been made in agreeing to the terms of separation.
British Prime Minister Theresa May had called for divorce talks and negotiations on a new trade deal to proceed simultaneously. European Council President Donald Tusk said the Brexit process will be "difficult, complex and sometimes even confrontational. There's no way around it." He vowed that the European Union's 27 jilted members will stick together in driving a tough bargain with Britain, one that won't allow the United Kingdom to claim a better deal than the one it has today.