An awkward exchange was broadcast on the European Council’s live feed, as the Prime Minister appeared to argue with the Brussels chief
Furious Mrs May and the European Council President appeared to exchange tense words as EU leaders sat down for a round table in Brussels this morning.
The Prime Minister, clutching her handbag, appeared uncomfortable as Mr Juncker held her elbow as the pair talked.
It’s unclear what exactly what was said, but Mr Juncker appeared to shake his head and say “no” on several occasions.
And as an aide walked over, apparently to intervene, the European Council President was seen holding his hand out, seemingly rejecting what Mrs May had to say.
The Prime Minister was delivered a devastating blow by EU leaders last night after seeking help to win over Tory rebels as her party descended into civil war.
Mrs May had begged them to give ground on the Irish backstop as she faces a battle to get her Brexitdeal through Parliament.
But President Juncker rejected her plea to put a 12-month limit on the unpopular insurance plan to avoid a hard border in Ireland.
The top eurocrat accused the UK of being “nebulous and imprecise” as he savaged the PM’s attempts to unblock the stalemate that has thrown her Brexit plans – and her government – into disarray.
“We don’t want the UK to think there can be any form of renegotiation, that is crystal clear. We can add clarifications but no real changes,” he said.
“Our UK friends need to say what they want, rather than asking what we want,” he said.
Mrs May now faces a difficult press in conference at noon.