Responding to news from Downing Street that the UK Governmnent will refuse to extend the Brexit transition period, even if the EU requested a delay, Acting Leader of the Liberal Democrats Ed Davey said:
"Downing Street’s continual rejection of calls for an extension to Brexit talks is deeply irresponsible and fails to recognise the severity of the coronavirus crisis faced by the UK and countries across the EU.
"Suggestions by the Prime Minister's spokesperson that the UK's response to the coronavirus would be less flexible due to EU legislation are utterly ludicrous, not least in the face of the arguably more successful management of coronavirus by many other European countries.
“The truth is this Government has failed on multiple occasions to participate in meetings and equipment group buying exercises that would have only enriched and strengthened our response to this deadly virus.
"To press ahead with Brexit on the previous timetable - already recklessly fast - is just irresponsible and shows a fundamental disregard for the UK's national interest."