DELIVERED || Article 50 officially TRIGGERED as Sir Tim Barrow hands Donald Tusk Brexit letter.

Tim Barrow - serves article 50 to EU's Donald Tusk

This is the moment history was made as the Government finally triggered Article 50 and provided official confirmation that Britain will leave the European Union.

UK ambassador Sir Tim Barrow hand delivered a letter, signed personally by Theresa May, outlining the country’s desire to start divorce proceedings with the bloc immediately. 

At a carefully stage managed meeting in Brussels, from which the television cameras were banned, the PM’s top diplomat finally delivered the long-awaited notification to EU Council chief Donald Tusk. 

Sir Tim, carrying the all-important letter in a vintage attache case, smiled for the cameras but did not say anything as he formally carried out the result of last June’s referendum. 

Following the brief meeting, which lasted only minutes, Mr Tusk was set to head straight to a press conference in the EU Council’s new Europa building where he will give a statement to the world’s media.


The historic moment ends a nine month long “phoney war” over Brexit, during which political rhetoric has flowed freely but precious little concrete detail has been nailed down. 

It means that from now on the serious business will start, with many politicians taking a back seat as a handful of big hitters, aided by an army of officials, hammer out the future for UK-EU relations. 

And already details of Brussels’ initial response have begun to emerge, with the leaking of a draft declaration stating that they want to see the UK achieve an “orderly departure” from the club.

Tory MEP Ashley Fox told that, once level-headed officials and not politicians take charge of the talks, he expects the two parties to thrash out a “comprehensive” trade deal.

Tim Barrow - serves article 50 to EU's Donald Tusk
Tim Barrow - serves article 50 to EU's Donald Tusk

Tim Barrow - serves article 50 to EU's Donald Tusk

Of Sir Tim’s historic notification, he said:


He will end the phoney war that has existed since the referendum result was declared on June 24, a period of pre-negotiation posturing during which both sides have talked tough. Now the serious business starts of deciding our future relationship with the EU. 

It may not always seem to be the case when viewed from the UK, but here in Brussels I sense the overriding mood is one of determination to strike a deal as quickly as possible that is fair to both sides.

Donald Tusk

This afternoon the EU Commission will publish a detailed timeline for how its side of the talks will progress, explaining how the other 27 leaders will hand a mandate to chief negotiator Michel Barnier. 

Mr Tusk and top eurocrat Jean-Claude Juncker will also release brief written statements and there will be a Q&A article answering some of the most common queries about the Brexit process.
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