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The MEP took to Twitter to share a picture of the cover of the Dutch magazine Elsevier Weekblad which featured a story about the EU’s coronavirus recovery fund. Mr Verhofstadt fumed: “This kind of false reporting led to Brexit.”
The MEP added: “Elsevier has clearly not read the plan.
“Not 1 NL citizen will pay 1€ more for the COVID Recoveryfund.
“In the plan on the table the American internet giants & the products with a huge ecological footprint imported in EU will finance it.”
But the tweet prompted an angry reaction from Brexiteers.
One commented: “No Guy what led to Brexit was people like me who despise the EU voting for us to LEAVE.”
Another wrote: “No. A corrupt undemocratic EU superstate led to Brexit.”
A third said: “No Unaccountable people like you led to Brexit.”
Another added: “Na Na Na it’s nothing to do with that , wanting to be independent that lead to brexit.”
One more commented: “Na Na Na it’s nothing to do with that , wanting to be independent that lead to brexit.”
The UK legally left the EU on January 31 and is in a transition period with Brussels until the end of 2020 while the two sides negotiate a free trade agreement.
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Prime Minister Boris Johnson has repeatedly insisted he will not push back the deadline despite claims by Remainer critics that the timeframe is too tight.
But little progress was made in the latest round of talks, which are taking place remotely due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Key sticking points include fishing arrangements and the EU’s demand for a level playing field on standards.
Earlier this month, Mr Johnson’s Europe adviser David Frost criticised the bloc’s approach to negotiations in a letter to his EU counterpart Michel Barnier.
He said the UK found it “perplexing” that the EU was continuing to make “unbalanced, and unprecedented” demands but argued “rapid” progress could be made if Brussels was willing to offer terms similar to those found in free trade agreements it had already struck with third countries such as Canada and Japan.
Mr Frost said: “Overall, at this moment in negotiations, what is on offer is not a fair free trade relationship between close economic partners, but a relatively low-quality trade agreement coming with unprecedented EU oversight of our laws and institutions. It does not have to be like this.
“I remain convinced that it would be very straightforward for us to agree a modern and high-quality FTA and other separate agreements, like those you have agreed with other close partners around the world, and that we could do so quickly. “
The EU’s chief negotiator responded by hitting out at the “tone” of Mr Frost.
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