With a hard end-of-year deadline looming, the U.K. and the European Union will continue negotiations to try to avoid a no-deal Brexit, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on Sunday.
Taking the podium at EU headquarters in Brussels, Von der Leyen said that despite the lack of any breakthrough, talks to determine the two sides' future trading relationship would continue. Von der Leyen said she had a "constructive and useful phone call" with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, in which they discussed "major unsolved topics."
She didn't go into detail, but sticking points have included fishing rights, fair competition rules and mechanisms for resolving trade disputes.
"Our negotiation teams have been working day and night over the recent days, and despite the exhaustion after almost one year of negotiations — and despite the fact that deadlines have been missed over and over — we both think that it is responsible, at this point in time, to go the extra mile," von der Leyen said.
"We have accordingly mandated our negotiators to continue the talks, and to see whether an agreement can be reached, even at this late stage."