LONDON: Britain’s ambassador to the European Union, who sometimes clashed with London over its approach to Europe, abruptly resigned less than three months before Prime Minister Theresa May is due to trigger formal Brexit negotiations. Ivan Rogers, Britain’s envoy to the EU, told staff on Tuesday that he would step down from his post early but did not explain his reasons for resigning, said the Financial Times, which was first to report the resignation. Britain said in a statement that Rogers, who had been due to leave his post in October 2017, had stepped down to enable a successor to be appointed before May triggers formal Brexit talks by the end of March.
Rogers will leave within weeks. “Ivan Rogers has resigned a few months early,” a British government spokeswoman said. “We are grateful for his work and commitment over the last three years.” May now faces formal Brexit talks — likely to be among the most complicated negotiations in post-World War Two European history — without one of Britain’s most accomplished EU experts.