Philip Hammond has told hardline Brexiters to back off as he seeks a deal that will cushion the blow of leaving the European Union for business.
The chancellor is concerned that some colleagues could send out the wrong message ahead of today’s (17 July) Brexit meeting in Brussels.
Mr Hammond has accused some Brexiters of leaking details of cabinet meetings in attempts to undermine him.
The finger of blame is pointing at Michael Gove and Boris Johnson among others.
The chancellor told the BBC: “Some of the noise is generated by people who are not happy with the agenda that I have tried to advance over the last weeks, which is focused on protecting our economy, protecting our jobs and making sure we have continued rising living standards.”
Commenting on the latest developments, Brexit minister David Davies called for all interested parties to focus on the job in hand, rather than perpetuating the squabbling that has marred Brexit talks to date.
Despite seeping criticism of prime minister Theresa May’s leadership on the issue Mr Hammond underscored his argument that the majority of ministers backed a transition deal, despite Mrs May failing to reveal whether she intends to support current EU budget contributions, free movement and European Court jurisdiction post Brexit.