Juncker Believes Catalonia's Independence May Trigger Other Regions' Secession

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Jean-Claude Juncker has dismissed Brexit negotiations over citizens" rights as a "nonsense", claiming he could not understand why the British had not guaranteed from the start that everything would remain the same for European nationals - "or "foreigners', as they are saying in London" - after the United Kingdom leaves the EU.

"If we allow it, but it is not up to us of course, if Catalonia is going to become independent and then other people would do it the same, I do not like that", Juncker said in a speech at the Luxembourg University.

He said: "We can not find, for the time being, a real compromise as far as the remaining financial commitments of the United Kingdom are concerned. But now they have to pay". I'm not in a revenge mood. "I'm not hating the British", he added.

"Europeans have to be grateful for so many things that Britain has brought to Europe, during war after war, before, everywhere and every time".

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However, the European Union leaders said upon the completion of the fourth round of negotiations last month, that the progress seen was not enough, but praised a speech by Prime Minister Theresa in Florence, describing it as a step forward. "But now they have to pay".

The Prime Minister also said the United Kingdom would "want to make an ongoing contribution" to any European Union agencies and organisations the United Kingdom remained part of after Brexit - such as Europol.

However a leaked document seen by reporters in Brussels suggested that EU leaders meeting at the European Council summit next week could authorise "internal preparatory discussions" on the shape of a future trade relationship and a transition deal, in a move which could offer Prime Minister Theresa May hope for talks by the end of the year.

Speaking about the financial settlement at a press conference in Brussels alongside UK Brexit Secertary David Davis on Thursday, Barnier said: "On this question we have reached a state of deadlock which is very disturbing for thousands of project promoters in Europe and it's disturbing also for taxpayers".