Emmanuel Macron Reiterates that the UK are Still Free to Remain in the EU
Newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron said that the UK was still eligible to stay in the European Union despite plans to exit. Macron said that the EU’s door has always been open for Britain should it abandon plans for its Brexit. Macron was speaking even after Britain’s Prime Minister Teresa May announced that Brexit talks were scheduled to begin in June 2017.
Speaking at a press conference, Macron admitted that the door will remain open for as long as Brexit negotiations are still ongoing. However, he stressed that he acknowledged the British people’s sovereign decision to leave the European Union during their referendum held one year ago. He added that the scheduled Brexit talks were an important milestone since then.
Speaking at the Elysee Presidential Palace, Macron stated that once the process to leave the 28-member bloc started, the rest of the EU members should be collectively clear that it would be harder to reverse such a course.
On her part, Britain’s Prime Minister said that she was keen to stick to her planned timetable and would start the Brexit talks in Brussels. She revealed that despite her present domestic difficulties, the discussions would remain on course.
Teresa May’s Conservative Party lost a majority of its parliamentary seats in a snap election held last week. As a result, the loss of its parliamentary majority led to some observers suggesting that the Prime Minister may abandon her ‘hard Brexit’ plans.
May said that her administration acknowledged the unity of purpose displayed by UK citizens to leave the European Union. As such, she continued, it was paramount that her government sees to the successful completion of its citizen’s wishes.
Plans for Extremism and Terror Crack Down
While the two leaders held opposite views on the Brexit, they both agreed to a joint action plan that would see their two countries combine efforts to crack down on online terror propaganda and extremism. The two leaders accused social media networks and internet companies of failing to tackle the quickly growing scourge.
May said that the planned measures would ensure that the Internet will neither be used to harbor terrorists and criminals nor will it be used to spread radicalized material. Priorities include investigating encrypted communication platforms frequented by extremists, which allow them to evade security forces. Penalties will be imposed on Internet companies that fail to remove such content. Already social media networks like Twitter and Facebook are trying to monitor content posted by their users.
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