Jean-Claude Juncker appears to have ruled out any further extension to the Brexit process, after an 11th-hour deal was agreed this morning.
The European Commission president told reporters in Brussels that the deal “means there is no need for any kind of prolongation”.
“We have concluded a deal. So there is not an argument for delay. It has to be done now,” Juncker said.
Asked what he would do if he was asked to provide an extension, the Luxembourgish politician said he “was ruling out that there will be any kind of prolongation” just half an hour earlier.
“If we have a deal, we have a deal, and there is no need for prolongation. That is not only the British view – that is my view too.”
Speaking at a press conference alongside UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Juncker also said he was looking forward to beginning the next stage of discussions, on the future relationship between the two sides, on 1 November – the day after the nominal Halloween deadline.
Johnson also told reporters there was “no case for delay.”
He urged “common sense” to prevail.
However, back in Westminster MPs have just voted to make the meaningful vote on the deal, which will be brought on a rare Saturday sitting, amendable.
That means they could attach a condition making the final deal subject to a second referendum.
There is also no guarantee the deal will pass, with the Conservatives’ confidence and supply partner Democratic Unionist Party, and opposition parties including Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the SNP, all rejecting the terms.
If the Brexit deal does not get parliamentary approval, Johnson could still be forced to seek an extension – but it would be European Council president Donald Tusk, rather than Juncker, that he must ask.
The leaders of the EU27 member states would then make a decision.
Main image: Getty