June 28, 2017
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European Union

Johnson confident Brexit outcome will benefit both sides as talks to begin

Luxembourg, Jun 19 (efe-epa).- The United Kingdom's foreign secretary said on Monday that he thought negotiations on his country's exit from the European Union would be beneficial for both sides.

Boris Johnson made his comments upon his arrival to an EU Foreign Affairs Council in Luxembourg, on the day that Brexit negotiations were to begin in Brussels.

"I think the whole process will lead to a happy resolution which can be done with honour and profit to both sides," Johnson said.

"The most important thing I think now is for us to look to the horizon, think about the future, and think about the new partnership, the deep and special partnership that we want to build with our friends," the top UK diplomat said.

The European Commissioner's Chief Negotiator for Brexit, Michel Barnier, and the UK's Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, David Davis, were set to hold talks in which both parties were expected to set out their respective positions.

That meeting would take place at the European Commission in Brussels from 11:00 am local time (9:00 am GMT) and was expected to go on until 6:30 pm, after which point the pair are to give a press briefing.

The occasion marks the start of Brexit negotiations after Prime Minister Theresa May activated Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty on Mar. 29 _ the mechanism that officially notifies the EU that a country wishes to leave the bloc _ and set a two-year negotiations period in motion.

The EU would first be seeking to reach an agreement on EU citizens rights, the UK's departure bill, and the future border between the Republic of Ireland, an EU member, and Northern Ireland, a region of the UK.

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