11:17 GMT +312 November 2019
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    An European flag and a British flag stand next to each others outside the European Commission building, in Brussels, on May 8 2015.

    Flexi-Cam: U-Turn for UK PM Over Migrant Benefits Ban

    © AFP 2019 / Emmanuel Dunand
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    Donald Tusk, President of the European Commission, looks set to be proved right after telling British Prime Minister David Cameron that every European Union country is "against" his plans to stop migrants accessing work benefits and the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK.

    Hoping to canvas support for his controversial reforms, David Cameron has been on a charm offensive in Eastern Europe. Off he went to Poland, expecting his counterpart, Beata Szydlo, would see his point of view — except she didn't.

    British Prime Minister David Cameron (L) talks with his Polish counterpart Ewa Kopacz in Lazienki palace in Warsaw on May 29, 2015.
    © AFP 2019 / Janek Skarzynski
    British Prime Minister David Cameron (L) talks with his Polish counterpart Ewa Kopacz in Lazienki palace in Warsaw on May 29, 2015.

    "There are also discussions and issues about which we do not see eye to eye, but I believe these issues will be further discussed by us," said Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydlo during a joint press conference with David Cameron.

    Since every EU country is against Cameron's reforms, according to Tusk, and the Polish PM clearly doesn't see "eye to eye" with the British PM, he may well be forced to backtrack on his promised reforms to the UK's membership in the EU, which could compromise his popularity with Euroskeptic voters back in Britain.

    Asked during the press conference in Warsaw whether it was time for Cameron to compromise, he said:

    "There is real engagement with the agenda that we have set out, a lot of common ground, a lot of agreement on the very significant proposals that we have made. Some of them are different and they need further work. Everyone is committed to doing that further work and, I think reaching agreement." 

    According to London newspaper the Guardian, David Cameron is close to accepting that he will have to be flexible over his plans to stop migrants from accessing in-work benefits and public services for the first four years of residing in the UK — especially, since most EU leaders say they are "against" his proposals.

    Brussels one — Cameron nil.

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    Tags:
    political disagreement, economic migrants, health care, Brexit, employment, EU membership, negotiations, reforms, benefits, dialogue, migrants, National Health Service (NHS), European Union, Beata Szydlo, Donald Tusk, David Cameron, Europe, Poland, United Kingdom
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