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UK referendum

European partners must work together to deliver decisive response to UK vote


Commenting on the outcome of the UK referendum on EU membership, Greens/EFA co-president Philippe Lamberts said:

“There can be no doubt that this vote will have a dramatic impact across Europe and the globe. The UK vote is an extreme disappointment but it cannot be the beginning of a domino effect within the EU. The response of European governments must now be to work together to deliver a decisive response, which can shore up confidence in the EU. While there were clearly various motivations behind those who voted to leave the EU, there can be no doubt that some of the disillusionment with the European project is shared by many citizens beyond the UK.  From the outset, the European project aimed at ensuring lasting peace through the extension of freedom, democracy and shared prosperity. Reconnecting with that ambition is what is needed to address the many legitimate reasons behind this public dissatisfaction and ensure the EU can win back the support of citizens. We remain committed to this project and believe we need to highlight the major positive benefits the EU has delivered and the potential it has to allow us to respond to today’s global challenges. In a globalised world, there is no sovereignty if not shared.”

Greens/EFA co-president Rebecca Harms added:

"We seriously regret the outcome of the referendum. The Greens have always strongly believed that the EU provides by far the best platform for delivering peace and stability and confronting the global challenges we face. In the course of the divisive campaign, there was a concerted effort to delegitimise the EU. However, this vote is also the consequence of the widespread uncertainty and mistrust of the EU, which exists not only in the UK but also in other parts of the EU. This vote is a wake-up call for the EU. All pro-European forces need to be self-critical and seek answers to why there is such a growing gap to citizens in Europe. We cannot continue with business-as-usual. This means improving how the EU works and, in particular, strengthening democracy and transparency. Without prejudging the outcome of any change, there is also a need to strengthen the involvement of democratic institutions, both the European and national parliaments, in the EU process."