Macron, Merkel hold talks on Brexit and other EU issues

2019-02-28 07:28
German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Carsten Rehder/AFP)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Carsten Rehder/AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron emphasised on Wednesday that the European Union's remaining members are unwilling to renegotiate a Brexit agreement the British government accepted but lawmakers have refused to approve.

Merkel was in Paris to discuss Brexit, relations with the United States and other European issues with the French president. With the UK leaving the EU, the two have positioned France and Germany as the logical drivers of the bloc's future.

"The Franco-German relationship is the necessary condition to make Europe move forward," Macron said during a joint news conference with Merkel.

Britain's departure is set to take effect on March 29. The absence of an approved agreement on the withdrawal and future relations has created deep concerns of possible economic, transportation and trade chaos from a "no-deal" Brexit.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Tuesday that Parliament will get a chance to vote on whether to ask the EU for a postponement of Brexit day. All member countries would have to approve a delay.

Joined by Merkel, Macron said Britain would need a good reason for pushing back its scheduled exit.

Any delay request would need to be justified by "a clear perspective on the goal," he said. "We don't need time, we need decisions."

"If Britain needs a bit more time, we will not refuse that, but we are aiming for an orderly solution — an orderly withdrawal by the British from the European Union," Merkel said.

The two leaders reiterated the withdrawal agreement the EU won't renegotiate the divorce deal it reached with the British government in November.

Macron and Merkel said they wanted to strengthen defence cooperation between their countries, including developing a Franco-German arms industry and a common stance on weapons exports.

In January, they signed a pact to renew a pledge of peace and friendship Germany and France too decades ago to bury the bitterness from World War II. The new pact deals with increased cooperation in the areas of foreign and defense policy, fighting crime and terrorism, international development and research.

Read more on:    eu  |  angela merkel  |  emmanuel ­macron  |  uk  |  france  |  germany  |  brexit

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.