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The MEP shared an article which reported that the Government has bought a site off the M20 in Kent for a post-Brexit customs centre for the thousands of lorries that arrive in Dover from Calais every day. In his tweet, Mr Verhofstadt accused Boris Johnson of putting barriers to trade back up that Margaret Thatcher brought down and moaned that “progress can never be taken for granted”.
The MEP said: “In 1988, Margaret Thatcher proudly declared that the barriers to trade in Europe were coming down.
“In 2020, the same party is putting the barriers back up. Progress can never be taken for granted!”
But the post prompted a furious reaction from Brexiteers who branded Mr Verhofstadt “bitter”.
One commented: “You can agree or disagree with it, but people voted, so it has to happen. This is democracy.”
Another wrote: “Let’s face the facts Guy the EU have move the barriers many times since 1988 & is now a dictatorship.”
A third said: “She was talking about a very different construct to what the EU has become. It was never a political union we joined.
“We asked for change to remain within the EU. You snubbed us. Time to pay the price.”
Another added: “Bitter, much?”
A fifth commented: “Still bitter! The federal state was something she very vocally opposed.”
Another fumed: “In 1988 the EEC was strictly a trading organisation.
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“Since then people like you have become power-hungry and have since turned the trading bloc into a full political, economic, monetary and bureaucratic union. We left just at the right time.”
One more wrote: “The UK voted to leave the EU. we are totally open to a free trade agreement.
“We are not in agreement with having our internal affairs controlled by Brussels. Just get the trade agreement done.”
It comes as the Government has announced more than £700 million to ensure Britain’s border systems are fully operational when the UK leaves the EU at the end of the year.
Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show: “We are taking back control of our borders, and leaving the single market and the customs union at the end of this year bringing both changes and significant opportunities for which we all need to prepare.
“That is why we are announcing this major package of investment today.
“With or without further agreement with the EU, this £705 million will ensure that the necessary infrastructure, tech and border personnel are in place so that our traders and the border industry are able to manage the changes and seize the opportunities as we lay the foundations for the world’s most effective and secure border.”
The £705 million package includes £235 million for staffing and IT systems, and £470 million for port and inland infrastructure to ensure compliance with new customs procedures and controls.
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