Theresa May warns Jean-Claude Juncker she will be 'bloody difficult' in fresh war of words

Posted On: 
2nd May 2017

Theresa May has warned Jean-Claude Juncker she will be "bloody difficult" in the Brexit negotiations as a fresh war of words between London and Brussels broke out.

Theresa May welcomes Jean-Claude Juncker to Downing St last month

The Prime Minister's comments followed reports of a tense Downing Street dinner between the Prime Minister and the European Commission president last week.

Mr Juncker is reported to have told Mrs May that Brexit "cannot be a success" and later told German Chancellor Angela Merkel that the Prime Minister was "deluding herself".

Theresa May dismisses Juncker report as ‘Brussels gossip’

Labour blasts 'complacent' Theresa May after damning Juncker dinner report

European Parliament backs up Juncker and Barnier on Brexit 'divorce bill'

In an interview with the BBC, Mrs May again dismissed the reports as "Brussels gossip" - but made clear her frustration with Mr Juncker.

Referring to comments made about her last summer by Ken Clarke, she said: "I think what we've seen recently is that at times these negotiations are going to be tough. Now during the Conservative Party leadership campaign I was described by one of my colleagues as a 'bloody difficult woman'. And I said at the time the next person to find that out will be Jean-Claude Juncker."

The Prime Minister added: "These are going to be tough negotiations as we as we go ahead. I'm asking the British people to give me a mandate to go into those negotiations. Every vote for me and my team is a vote to strengthen our hand in ensuring that we get the best possible deal for the United Kingdom."


Elsewhere in the interview, Mrs May insisted that she will serve a full term until 2022 if the Tories win the election.

Before the last election, David Cameron revealed that he would not stand for a third term in office - leading critics to claim he was a "lame duck".

Asked if she would serve another five years in office, Mrs May said: "I have no intention of doing anything other than serving the full term until 2022 because this is, as I say, an important time for our country and what we do over the next five years could change our country for the better for the future and truly make it a country that works for everyone, not just the privileged few. That's what I'm in it for."