French sources said the former prime minister told Emmanuel Macron to “hold firm” over a Brexit deal, so Parliament will be forced to accept a customs union or even call for a second referendum, sources in Paris have confirmed. Mr Blair has denied this is the terminology used but admitted he has told European leaders how to persuade Britain to stay in the EU. But furious Brexiteers have hit out at Tony Blair over his interference, with ex-Labour MP George Galloway taking to Twitter to say: “This is treason!”
In reply to this attack from Mr Galloway, Twitter user @Sea_Penguin5 wrote: “Absolutely no surprises here – Macron and Blair ‘two cheeks of the same backside’.”
And Richard Wellings, deputy research director and head of transport at the Institute of Economic Affairs, wrote: “Just when you thought he couldn’t sink any lower, it emerges that Tony Blair has been briefing Emmanuel Macron on how to force Britain to stay in the EU.”
Ruth Lea, economic advisor at Arbuthnot Banking Group and co-founder of eurosceptic campaign group Global Vision, said: “To describe Tony Blair’s behaviour (briefing Macron about forcing UK to stay in EU) as ‘unacceptable’ is, of course, a stunning understatement.”
Mr Blair had earlier come under attack from Eurosceptic Conservative MP Peter Bone, who described the former Prime Minister’s actions as “totally unacceptable”.
He said: “It is totally unacceptable for a former prime minister to go around the heads of European countries and undermine the Government’s position. I’m not sure we could find another time in modern history when this has happened.
“Tony Blair has to realise he has had his time as prime minister and I’m surprised and disappointed he has done this. I doubt he would have liked it if his predecessors had done this to him.
“Thankfully I don’t think it will have any effect other than to damage his legacy.”
The Tony Blair Institute released a statement attacking the claims he has advised the French leader on how to get Britain to reverse Brexit.
However, the group admitted he had advised European leaders on Brexit, including what to do if Britain calls a second referendum.
In a statement, the Institute said: “Contrary to ill informed, inaccurate reports, Mr Blair hasn’t said to President Macron or anyone else ‘hold firm and Britain will stay’.
“That is literally an invention from the so-called Tory source.
“What he’s said to any European leader is if Britain decides to go back to the people, a decision for Parliament and no one else, then Europe should think again as well as Britain thinking again (e.g. on issues around immigration & Freedom of Movement).”
Mr Blair has publicly continued to push for a second Brexit referendum, and previously admitted he told European leaders it was now “probable” a second referendum would happen.
The former Labour leader has also in the past met European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker for private talks.
In a recent interview with Euronews, Mr Blair said: “I don’t disclose the people I speak to because that should remain private between me and the leaders I talk to.
“But I think it’s very obvious – I need to get the European leaders to the next stage which is to realise that the probability is it’s going to happen and they’ve got to prepare for it.”
Express.co.uk has contacted Mr Blair’s office for comment on the tweets from Brexiteers.