‘Brexit convert’ Michel Barnier to be invited to join the ERG by Mark Francois

Brexit: Michel Barnier confirms ‘no room’ for renegotiation

Michel Barnier has stunned Brexiteers over his calls for France to be protected from judgements by the EU’s European Court of Justice (ECJ) and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg.

The former French Prime Minister’s apparent conversion to some of the aims of Brexit has been hailed by politicians he frustrated for several years following the 2016 EU referendum when Britain voted to leave the EU.

As chief negotiator for the EU, Barnier made it as difficult as possible for the UK to become an independent state and constantly demanded that it continued to accept judgements from the ECJ.

But now he appears to have become infuriated with the intrusive court himself and believes, like Brexiteers, it is holding France back.

The conversion to the cause has been hailed by Mark Francois, chairman of the powerful European Research Group (ERG) Brexiteer Conservative MPs.

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Mr Francois is now set to suggest the ERG offers Barnier honorary membership when it meets this evening.

He told Express.co.uk: “Well, who knew? It’s amazing to see Michel Barnier, the EU’s former Chief Negotiator, now apparently calling for unilateral French protections from both the ECJ and ECHR!

“We have an ERG Plenary meeting tomorrow, at which I will now formally propose that we send him a membership form.”

While the suggestion may be tongue in cheek, Brexiteers have noticed that leading figures in the EU have been getting increasingly frustrated with Brussels overreaching its power.

Currently, Poland and Hungary are also having a dispute over attempts by the Commission and European Parliament to bully them to change domestic law and make it more woke.

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Mr Barnier made his startling admission in an interview with the Financial Times.

He admitted that the direction of travel of the EU for the last 40 years needs to change to protect national laws from Brussels over reach.

He even sided with critics of the ECHR, which is not part of the EU, who believe it has become politicised and is interfering too much in national laws including the Rwanda deportation scheme.

Mr Barnier said: “For 30 or 40 years, there’s a kind of interpretation that is always in favour of the migrants . . . We have to rewrite something in the [EU] treaties or in the [European Convention of Human Rights].

“We have to create a constitutional shield [allowing national law to take precedence], and to ask the French people to decide.

“The EU today is no longer the EU that the UK left. We have begun to draw the lessons of Brexit.”

However, the Frenchman has also said the UK is welcome back in the EU and described Remainer Labour leader as “a great patriot”.

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