00:57 GMT16 January 2021
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    BRUSSELS (Sputnik) - Brexit has shown that EU nations can leave the bloc with a workable deal at hand, regaining their freedoms to trade with the world, Filip Dewinter, a leading member of the Flemish nationalist Vlaams Belang party, told Sputnik.

    "With this agreement, the peoples in Europe can see that an agreement is possible, and that member states can leave Europe with a commercial deal giving them their freedom again to trade with the world. If the British economy is now successful in its new start, it will be a fantastic example for other sovereign states in Europe to demand a review of the way the EU is organized", Dewinter, who is also a member of the Flemish parliament, said.

    According to the politician, some liberal European lawmakers wanted a hard Brexit to use it as a warning against other member states "that would be tempted to follow the UK in an exit strategy".

    "The European Commission is all smiles but is ‘as happy as a dead mouse’. The agreement is a bitter pill to swallow for the Europeists who want more Europe, while the European nations don’t", he argued.

    Dewinter noted that the sides had managed to negotiate a deal, despite the European Commission’s efforts to "punish" the UK.

    "This agreement is a warning for all Europeans that it is possible to get out. Michel Barnier, the European Chief negotiator, tweets first that Europe manages to maintain peace in Ireland. This is pure rubbish; never was peace threatened between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland and the agreement that governs the relations between the UK and Ireland has nothing to do with the EU. The ‘peace rhetoric’ of the EU sounds false", he said.

    Though details of the deal have yet to be analysed, the agreement is "good news for all Brits and Europeans this Christmas", the Flemish politician concluded.

    The European Union and the United Kingdom reached a trade deal on Thursday following months of talks. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that the deal was fair and balanced for both sides. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson added that it might not be a "cakeist treaty", but was "what the country needs at this time". He noted that the deal would create a giant free trade zone starting 1 January and raise the country’s share of fishing quotas from around half to two-thirds in five and a half years.

    Tags:
    trade deal, UK, EU, Brexit
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