‘Tormented’ Theresa May ‘begged’ Jean Claude Juncker for help at Brexit dinner

Posted On: 
23rd October 2017

An “anxious”, “despondent” and “tormented” Theresa May “begged” Jean Claude Juncker for help in a working dinner last week, according to reports.

Theresa May and Jean-Claude Juncker in Downing Street.
Credit: 
PA Images

Nick Timothy - Mrs May’s former chief of staff - accused Mr Claude Juncker’s office of leaking the highly personal details of the dinner. 

He took to Twitter to blame Martin Selmayr, who has been accused of leaking private details of meetings before, and said the leak was a reminder “some in Brussels want no deal or a punitive one”. 

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Mrs May met chief EU negotiator Michel Barnier and European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker for dinner last Monday. In a joint statement following the meeting, the pair described it as “constructive and friendly”. 

However, a  report from German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) claimed Mr Claude Juncker had described Mrs May as “a woman who trusts hardly anyone but is also not ready for a clear-out to free herself".

The paper stated: “She indicated that back home friend and foe are at her back plotting to bring her down.

“May said she had no room left to manoeuvre. The Europeans have to create it for her."

"May's face and appearance spoke volumes, Juncker later told his colleagues," the paper added. "She has deep rings under her eyes. She looks like someone who can't sleep a wink."

This follows previous leaked reports from an April meeting, in which Mr Claude Juncker was said to have remarked: “I leave Downing Street ten times as sceptical as I was before.”
 
The comment sparked further tensions between Westminster and the EU, with Mrs May accusing “bureaucrats in Brussels” of trying to interfere in the UK’s general election by undermining the Conservatives.

Mr Claude Juncker later described the leak as a “serious mistake”.