A mock cover of a Tintin book entitled Tintin and the Brexit Plan graces the walls of the European Council's Brexit task force meeting room. And no, it has nothing to do with the adventures of the much loved Tintin and his dog. It does however seem that Tintin has turned into a mascot

The poster is actually a satirical picture "mocking" the forthcoming Brexit negotiations between the bloc and Britain, The Telegraph says.

According to the newspaper "Europe's top Brexit officials have made clear their view of Britain's bleak prospects in the forthcoming Article 50 negotiations" by putting up the poster on its walls.

The poster shows Tintin with his dog and Captain Haddock on a small lifeboat boat with a fire raging in the centre.

"The image reflects the view among many top EU officials that Brexit is an act of economic self-harm by the UK that will become apparent in the course of the negotiations," the paper said.

A senior EU diplomatic source is quoted as saying: "If the ship is sinking, is it not only natural to call for rescue. We are still not giving up hope that the United Kingdom decides not to leave us."

The comment shows that top EU officials and political leaders are still harbouring hopes that the UK will reconsider its decision to exit the bloc when it is faced with the reality of leaving the EU single market and throwing out the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May is set to trigger Article 50 on 29 March, which will set off two-years of divorce talks.

Already, standing in the way is the divorce bill, which EU has reportedly put at £50bn (€57bn) which it says the UK will have to pay.

Tory ministers however are hoping that Britain will get away with just up to £3bn.

Jean-Claude Juncker, the European Commission President has already fired the first shot, warning that a trade deal will not be on the cards if the UK rejects the terms offered by the EU.

He is reported to have told a German newspaper Bild am Sonntag earlier this week that the UK will have "the choice to eat what's on the table or not come to the table at all."

Tintin And Friends On Sale In Paris
A statue of Tintin in Paris Getty

Juncker warned that the choices forced on Britain by Brexit will only help bring the other 27 EU member states closer together as they will "realise it's not worth leaving."

Is Tintin an anti-Brexit mascot?

The Spectator notes that although the title of the poster is pure fiction, "avid Tintinologists" will recognise that the illustration itself is genuine and was featured on page 19 of Captain Haddock's first adventure, The Crab with the Golden Claws.

The book sees Tintin and the captain and the dog of course, cast adrift after Tintin tells Haddock that his crew have been smuggling opium in tins of crab meat.

The Spectator says: "... you can see why Europhiles would welcome Tintin as a mascot. He's Belgian for a start, and most of his enemies are Americans (Americans big business comes in for a particularly rough ride -eat your heart out, Donald Trump)."

It also notes that Tintin "breezes across European borders with a Schengenesque disdain for security checks or passport controls."

The fact that Haddock is the "archetypal Little Englander" makes his role as the foolish fall-guy in the propaganda poster especially apt, the Spectator concludes.