Deputy Brexit negotiator Sabine Weyand | European Union
EU deputy Brexit negotiator: UK leaving will have ‘limited’ impact on EU security
‘In the exchange of secret service information, Great Britain is a lot less active than Germany and France.’
Updated 2/11/19, 4:11 PM CET
BERLIN — The U.K.’s departure from the EU will have a “limited” impact on the bloc’s security arrangements, the European Commission’s deputy Brexit negotiator Sabine Weyand said today.
“When it comes to foreign and security policy the impacts of Brexit are limited,” Weyand said in Berlin at an event to kick off this year’s Munich Security Conference.
Weyand said just 3 percent of staff working on EU security operations are from the U.K., rising to 5 percent for civilian deployments.
“In the exchange of secret service information, Great Britain is a lot less active than Germany and France,” said Weyand. “That is because cooperation on security takes place outside EU structures.”
Weyand also said an exchange of letters between Prime Minister Theresa May and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has triggered an “interesting debate,” but warned that London needs time for the parties to come to an arrangement.
Corbyn has asked for a permanent customs union with the EU — something Brexiteers dread because they want the U.K. to be able to strike its own trade deals. May’s spokesman said today: “We’re not considering Jeremy Corbyn’s customs proposals, we’re not considering any proposals to remain in the customs union,