‘Au revoir blundering Boris’: Europe reacts to political chaos in UK


Monday’s flurry of resignations from Theresa May’s cabinet is causing consternation and frustration around European capitals, with politicians and commentators concerned that chaos in Westminster will paralyse Brexit negotiations and accelerate Britain’s departure from the geopolitical stage.

The prospect of more chaos in Westminster would more likely cause consternation than schadenfreude in Berlin, Josef Janning, who heads the Berlin office of the European council of foreign relations, told the Guardian. Although that sentiment did not extend to the recently-departed foreign secretary, Boris Johnson.

“The sorrow caused by Johnson’s departure in German government circles will be in short supply,” Janning said. “German politicians were alienated by the way in which he carried out his office from the beginning. He was seen as a player, an opportunist.”

Relations had got off to an awkward start during Johnson’s inaugural visit to the German capital in November 2016, when he offered the then-foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier an awkward fist-bump during their press conference and reportedly referred to his counterpart as “Markus-Walter” in their private meeting. Steinmeier, now Germany’s president, said he was “not amused” by Johnson’s support for Brexit.(theguardian)…[+]