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EU leaders summit to discuss Brexit, COVID-19

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ANKARA

EU leaders have gathered in Brussels on Thursday for two days of discussions on a post-Brexit trade agreement, the coronavirus pandemic, and the climate change. 

In a doorstep statement, European Council President Charles Michel said they will discuss the relations with the UK this afternoon.

Michel said that the EU wants an agreement but also wants to protect the level playing field.

“It is a question of fairness, It is a question of jobs. It’s also the question of the integrity of the single markets,” he said regarding the negotiations.

He added that the bloc will “identify what are the important building blocks in order to make an agreement possible in December.”

European Commission head Ursula von der Leyen also said that they want “a good deal, but not at any cost”.

She added that several issues are still open regarding Brexit, including the fishing rights.

Noting that the coronavirus pandemic will also be on the agenda today, Von der Leyen said coronavirus restrictions and the preparations for a possible vaccine will be discussed.

“We have put forward a proposal for a vaccination strategy, because we want the member states to be prepared for the moment we have the vaccine,” Von Der Leyen said.

The leaders of the 27 member states will also discuss how to tackle the climate change, sanctions on Russia and future relations with Africa. 

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