Barnier’s body language reveals futility and deadlock at Brexit talks

The EU’s chief negotiator and David Davis avoided all eye contact as they reiterated the progress they had failed to make

“Here we are again,” said Michel Barnier, with more than a hint of resignation. “The same two people … ” Neither of whom could quite bring themselves to look each other in the eye. Five rounds into Britain’s Brexit negotiations with the EU and Barnier and David Davis have all but given up making any pretence that the talks have made much progress. The body language is now as poor as the language itself.

After those two sentences, Barnier switched to French. Normally he makes most of his opening remarks in English, but French is the mother language of existential ennui. Time to channel his inner Jean-Paul Sartre. Theresa May’s Florence speech had given the talks some momentum. As in almost none.

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