Wednesday

11th Dec 2019

Tusk and Juncker: Brexit could be 'end of West'

  • "Brexit could be the beginning of the destruction not only of the EU but also of the whole Western political civilisation," said Tusk (l, with Juncker and Cameron) (Photo: Reuters)

Ten days before the EU referendum in the UK, leaders of the European Council and Commission have suggested Brexit would destroy Western political civilisation.

In an interview with Germany's Bild newspaper published on Monday (13 June), the council president Donald Tusk said that a British exit from the EU would have "long term consequences that nobody can foresee".

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"Brexit could be the beginning of the destruction not only of the EU but also of the whole Western political civilisation," he said, adding that he was speaking "as an historian".

He said that "all radical anti-Europeans in EU member states would rejoice" and also that "external enemies would drink champagne".

But he said he was sure that the EU would "survive, even if the price would be high".

The civilisational warning is not just Tusk's personal opinion.

A European Commission spokeswoman told press in Brussels on Monday that the commission president, Jean-Claude Juncker, and Tusk "meet regularly" and have "discussed the matter several times".

"Therefore president Juncker conveyed exactly the same message in his own words, for example on 12 May in Berlin”, she said.

Speaking at a forum organised by a German radio broadcaster, West Deutscher Rundfunk, Juncker said that a Brexit would create "manifold problems".

Asked at that the time if it would be a catastrophe, he answered: "Yes."

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