“I think the security of our citizens is far too important to start a trade-off of one and the other. Both are absolutely necessary in the future partnership without bargaining this one against the other,” he added.

In exchange for collaboration in security, Theresa May wants to have a trade deal with the EU but the appetite in Brussels for such a trade-off is non-existent. They want to decide issues like the rights of citizens and the Irish border before making new trade arrangements.

European lawmakers agreed Wednesday that the benefits of being a member of the EU cannot be the same for a country that decided to leave. In the corridors of power in Brussels, one thing is certain: “Whatever happens, opting to leave cannot be better than remaining a member of the club.”

Despite the rising tensions on both sides of the English Channel, some took their time to celebrate this historic moment.

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The U.K.’s independence party UKIP, which has always pushed for Brexit, celebrated the official start of the process in pubs in London and Brussels. Its former leader, Nigel Farage was pictured at a party in London, making the Daily Mail’s front page next to the headline: “Cheers to a great future.” Similarly, the right-wing Daily Telegraph went with the headline: “A magnificent moment.”