British Conservative party politician Boris Johnson has vowed to withhold the $50 billion Brexit “divorce” payment from the European Union to try to force a new deal. Johnson, who is tipped to win his party leadership and potentially replace outgoing prime minister Theresa May, who resigned on Friday, said that the United Kingdom should have never agreed to the sum of money without finalizing the deal under which they leave the E.U. May was unable to win a majority in parliament for the deal she negotiated with the E.U., whose leaders say they won’t go back to the bargaining table. “I think our friends and partners need to understand that the money is going to be retained until such time as we have greater clarity about the way forward,” he told the Sunday Times newspaper, adding that the cash was “a great solvent and a great lubricant” in securing a new deal. The U.K. is scheduled to leave the E.U. on October 31 with or without a deal.
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