Europe to push for quickie UK divorce, Kerry flies in for talks
BRUSSELS: European leaders will embark this week on a frantic drive to push Britain into a quick divorce, with top US diplomat John Kerry rushing to join discussions as the “Brexit” crisis goes global.
Germany’ s powerful Chancellor Angela Merkel will host the leaders of France, Italy and the European Union in Berlin on Monday amid fears UK’s vote to leave will create a domino effect in eurosceptic member states.
In what promises to be one of the bitterest summits in the EU’s history, British Prime Minister David Cameron will then face huge pressure in Brussels on Tuesday to immediately trigger the two-year exit process.
But Cameron, who has said he will resign by October and leave the negotiations to his successor, is to be left out in the cold on the second day of the summit on Wednesday when the other 27 EU leaders meet without him.
With a dismayed Washington fearing key ally Britain’s decision to leave the EU will harm Western unity, Kerry flies in to Brussels and London on Monday. “An EU united and strong is our preference for a partner to be able to work on the important issues that face us today,” Kerry said after talks with Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni.
For European powers the priority is to divorce as soon as possible and stabilise a union that is already struggling with growing anti-EU populism, a migration crisis and economic woes.
Merkel has said there was “no reason to be nasty” in Britain’s exit negotiations.
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