London Mayor Sadiq Khan has launched a savage attack on Theresa May’s Brexit speech stating her tough stance could “rip Britain apart.”
Khan claimed that May’s speech was designed to paper over splits in the Conservative Party and has failed to put the best interests of the country at heart.
Khan’s comments have been driven by May’s comments that she would walk away from negotiations if the EU offered a bad deal. She also stated that Britain would leave the single market.
Writing in The Evening Standard newspaper, Khan said, “A hard-line approach to Brexit may hold the Conservative Party together, but it could rip Britain apart.
“And if we continue on this path – towards a ‘hard Brexit’ – we risk having to explain to future generations why we knowingly put their economy, their prosperity and their place on the world stage in such peril.”
He stated that access to the single market was critical to the success of London. He said in a speech given in Davos, Switzerland,
“Securing privileged access to the single market must be the top priority for the negotiations. It’s critical for London. Nothing else will do. It can’t be brushed aside – as it was yesterday,” he was expected to say.
“The benefits of Britain retaining privileged access are real and tangible. Having access to the single market would mean the difference between businesses thriving and growing, or struggling to survive.”
He repeated his message in a keynote speech hosted by Morgan Stanley, saying, “A ‘hard Brexit’ would cut Europe off from its only truly global financial centre. This would be bad news for Europe as well as Britain. So a hard Brexit really would be a lose-lose situation.
“Tell your political leaders that a ‘hard Brexit’ deal is not in the best interests of your company. This won’t be easy. But I’m confident that despite the Prime Minister’s rhetoric, there is still a sensible deal to be done.”
Mr Khan said that London would remain Europe’s leading business hub after Britain leaves the EU.