October 17, 2017 / 2:53 PM / a month ago

Britain's May to address EU leaders on Brexit on Thursday

BRUSSELS, Oct 17 (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May will address her European Union peers on her strategy for Britain’s exit from the EU at a dinner in Brussels on Thursday, a senior EU official said.

The official, involved in the preparation of the EU summit on Thursday and Friday, also said that May’s Brexit speech in Florence earlier last month helped unblock stalled negotiations and allow for “good” progress.

The progress so far, however, was not sufficient to start the next phase of negotiations on a transition period and a future relationship, the official said.

“It is a fact that there is no sufficient progress, but there is good progress after the speech of Theresa May in Florence, it unlocked negotiations,” the official said.

“After the Florence speech the reading of the situation is that we are negotiating in good faith. We still hope it will be possible to achieve sufficient progress in December, but much depends on the UK side,” the official said.

“If indeed sufficient progress takes place by December, the EU council can give ... the green light for the second phase: the transition and future relations,” the official said. (Reporting By Jan Strupczewski; editing by Robert-Jan Bartunek)

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