EU still sees no reworking of Brexit deal

FILE PHOTO: European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker holds a news conference after an extraordinary European Union leaders summit to discuss Brexit, in Brussels, Belgium April 11, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Commission again ruled out on Tuesday any reopening of the withdrawal treaty negotiated with Britain last year after a media report in London that Prime Minister Theresa May had asked aides to review alternative arrangements for the Irish border.

“It is excluded that we renegotiate or reopen the withdrawal agreement because this is the best solution possible,” deputy chief spokeswoman Mina Andreeva told a news conference, citing remarks by Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

She had been asked about a report about pro-Brexit members of May’s Conservative Party pressing the prime minister again to seek changes to the treaty so as to remove the controversial “backstop” protocol that is intended to avoid disruptive customs checks on Northern Ireland’s sensitive land frontier with the European Union.

Reporting by Alastair Macdonald