Brexit

UK could stay in EU despite Brexit vote, Macron says

Britain could potentially remain part of the European Union, French president Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Speaking alongside U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May in Paris, Macron said that the door remains open for the U.K. to remain in the EU, despite last year’s Brexit vote.

“The door obviously remains open so long as the Brexit talks aren’t concluded,” Macron said.

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Macron said that once negotiations commence it will be hard to turn back.

The comments follow the June 8 U.K. election in which May’s Conservative Party lost its parliamentary majority. May had called for the election with the goal of strengthening her position to negotiate Brexit.

But May said the plan to begin Brexit talks – scheduled to start on June 19 according to The Guardian – will remain as is. The U.K. government will aim to maintain a “deep and special partnership” with the EU, especially on issues like trade, May stated.

“There is a unity of purpose among people in the United Kingdom. It is a unity of purpose, having voted to leave the EU, that the government gets on with that,” May said.

Macron, who won France’s presidential election in May, has been a strong advocate for a unified Europe. “My wish is that we don’t use up energy talking about modalities of Brexit, but that in the eurozone and the EU we can continue talking about necessary projects to go further,” he said.