Juncker warned Selmayr: This won't leak

EU- Juncker- May

Later in the week, at the European Council summit, EU leaders said they would begin scoping work on future trade talks while making clear to Mrs May that she must make more concessions on Britain's divorce payment for negotiations to progress.

Suspicion over who was responsible for the leak quickly fell on Mr Juncker's powerful German chief of staff, Martin Selmayr, who was one of the... The German newspaper account said Juncker had told colleagues that "May's facial expressions and her appearance spoke volumes".

She later dismissed this as "Brussels gossip" and both sides said their talks had been "constructive and friendly".

Meanwhile, five leading business groups have joined forces to call for a swift agreement on a transitional deal in which firms can operate largely on the same basis as now.

In his response to Mr Timothy he suggested there were some people who had an interest in undermining the "constructive" relationship between Mr Juncker and Mrs May.

FAZ reporter Thomas Gutschker reveals Mr Juncker found Mrs May "anxious, despondent and discouraged" by the talks.

"Everyone can see: the prime minister is marked by the struggle with her own party", the article stated, according to a translated version quoted by a number of British newspapers.

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"Reminder that some in Brussels want no deal or a punitive one". "She has deep rings under her eyes".

That report was widely attributed to Selmayr and came just weeks ahead of British elections that turned into an embarrassing debacle for May who lost her majority in the United Kingdom parliament.

A few months ago, the same paper had also leaked an account of a meeting between Juncker and May and British critics also sought to pinpoint Selmayr as the source of the leak.

But Mr Selmayr said the claim was "false" and neither he nor Mr Juncker had any "interest in weakening" Mrs May. Who? is the real question'.

As Theresa May and David Davis were leaving the dining room at the Berlaymont building last Monday, Jean Claude Juncker made a point of saying, within their hearing, addressing Martin Selmayr: now we won't have any leaks of this will we Martin?

He also dismissed the suggestion the European Union was being "punitive" and claimed it was an attempt to frame the European Union side of the negotiations and "undermine talks".

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