Lions or Unicorns? Theresa May and Boris Johnson’s speeches on the UK’s future relationship with the EU

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Series Details 19.02.18
Publication Date 19/02/2018
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As Brexit negotiations between the European Union and the United Kingdom moved to Phase 2 (discussing the implementation phase and the future nature of the long-term relationship) in February 2018, the governing Conservative Party in the United Kingdom seemed increasingly riven by division between those arguing for a clear break (Hard Brexit) with the EU and those arguing for the UK to maintain a mutually beneficial close relationship with the EU (Soft Brexit).

Downing Street sources indicated in the middle of February 2018 that in the coming weeks the Prime Minister and senior ministers would make a series of six Road to Brexit speeches to clarify what it wanted from the EU.

The speeches took place on:

+ 14.02.18: Boris Johnson (Foreign Secretary)
+ 17.02.18: Theresa May (Prime Minister) at the Munich Security Conference.

Theresa May would give a second speech on a yet unfixed date as would David Davis, Liam Fox and David Lidington. Commentators noted that Amber Rudd and Philip Hammond, seen as more pro-EU ministers, were not part of this list.The author analyses and comments upon the post-Brexit speeches made by the United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May on the 17 February 2018 and the Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson on the 14 February 2018.

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