Bratislava, Sept 26 (CTK) – Prague and Bratislava are against Britain, after its departure from the EU, having access to the EU market and EU citizens being simultaneously discriminated against on the British labour market, the Czech and Slovak PMs said after their cabinets’ joint meeting yesterday.
Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD) said London should not negotiate about Brexit conditions with selected EU members separately.
“We find largely unacceptable the idea, which has been speculated about now and then, that Britain may be granted access to the European market without granting an equal approach to the workers from the EU, who work in Britain now. This is unimaginable for the Czech Republic,” Sobotka said.
He emphasised the need to keep the EU’s unity in negotiating the Brexit conditions with London.
“I think the Czechs and Slovaks, as well as the Visegrad Four (V4) group, share the view that any separate negotiations about the conditions between Britain and individual EU member countries is unacceptable for us. This would be very dangerous,” Sobotka said.
The V4 also includes Hungary and Poland.
Sobotka said Prague is interested in Britain remaining as close to Europe as possible and in the preservation of free trade with Britain.
Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-Social Democracy) said Slovakia shares the view.
“I cannot imagine Britain’s departure from the EU resulting in the emergence of a lower-category group of people with different rights,” Fico said.
“We will struggle hard for these people’s rights. We believe they have to be granted all rights and benefits they should rightfully enjoy,” Fico said.
Bratislava, too, is interested in the EU taking an united approach to Britain, he said.