Thursday

21st Sep 2017

Stakeholder

The British must not hold the EU to ransom

  • "The Liberal Democrats in Britain will not give up, we will stand up at the next elections alone if need to be, as the only part in Britain who will say that Britain's place is in the European Union," said Tim Farron. (Photo: ALDE Group)

On Tuesday 28 June, ahead of the EU council summit, Guy Verhofstadt, president of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe in the European Parliament, together with ALDE Party President and MEP, Hans Van Baalen, and the prime minister of Belgium, Charles Michel, met with more than sixty liberal heads of states, party leaders and EU commissioners of the ALDE family at the Egmont Palace in Brussels.

The main topic of discussion was the outcome of the EU referendum in the United Kingdom.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now and get 40% off for an annual subscription. Sale ends soon.

  1. €90 per year. Use discount code EUOBS40%
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

“We cannot afford to be stuck in limbo. The British must not hold the EU to ransom. Triggering Article 50 is necessary, if we are to respect the democratic choice of the British people," said Verhofstadt.

"We should use this momentum to make the EU work again, which means an effective European government for the Eurozone, a European border and coast guard to safeguard free movement, a European capacity to fight terrorism and a defence community. The result of this referendum is a wake-up call which we should use to move forward. We will only be able to turn the tide by working more efficiently together,” he added.

Commenting on the meeting, Van Baalen said: "It feels unreal that we are now talking of the EU without Great Britain, but you never know what can happen given that many Brits are now asking for a time to rethink. We cannot rethink forever, but we have to give some time to the Brits to see what develops."

"The Liberal Democrats in the ALDE Party will be active and play a key role in the current process in the UK," Van Baalen added.

UK Liberal Democrats leader Tim Farron said: "I am a democrat, I accept the outcome of elections if you lose, you must respect the people and what they say. It doesn't change the fact that I am utterly heart-broken."

"The Liberal Democrats in Britain will not give up, we will stand up at the next elections alone if need to be, as the only part in Britain who will say that Britain's place is in the European Union."

Column / Brexit Briefing

Brexit plans missing in action

The Brexit referendum has created an almighty political and economic mess, with little sign of a British or EU plan to clean things up.

Brexit vote irreversible, say EU leaders

EU leaders will not push Britain to begin the legal process to leave the EU, but they say there is no alternative after last week's referendum.

EU divided on answer to Brexit 'wake up call'

The first-ever meeting of EU leaders without a British PM will on Wednesday discuss how to regain public trust. But concrete ideas on the migration crisis and EU economy are few and far between.

Stakeholders' Views

This EUobserver section provides a platform for EU stakeholders to communicate positions, views and activities.

News in Brief

  1. Le Pen's right-hand man leaves National Front
  2. Spanish PM calls on Catalan leaders to 'stop escalation'
  3. Dutch government to appeal Srebrenica ruling
  4. Verhofstadt: Northern Ireland could stay in single market
  5. Catalan leader decries Spanish government intervention
  6. Hungary set for fresh campaign against public enemy Soros
  7. Iceland's PM leads in polls ahead of October elections
  8. Erdogan demands Iraqi Kurds cancel referendum

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Mission of China to the EUGermany Stands Ready to Deepen Cooperation With China
  2. World VisionFirst Ever Young People Consultation to Discuss the Much Needed Peace in Europe
  3. European Jewish CongressGermany First Country to Adopt Working Definition of Antisemitism
  4. EU2017EEFour Tax Initiatives to Modernise the EU's Tax System
  5. Dialogue PlatformResponsibility in Practice: Gulen & Islamic Thought
  6. Counter BalanceHuman Rights Concerns Over EIB Loan to the Trans Anatolian Pipeline Project
  7. Mission of China to the EUChina Leads the Global Clean Energy Transition
  8. CES - Silicones EuropeFrom Baking Moulds to Oven Mitts, Silicones Are a Key Ingredient in Kitchens
  9. Martens CentreFor a New Europeanism: How to Put the Motto "Unity in Diversity" Into Practice
  10. Access MBAGet Ahead With an MBA Degree. Top MBA Event in Brussels
  11. Idealist QuarterlyIdealist Quarterly Event: Building Fearless Democracies With Gerald Hensel
  12. Mission of China to the EUPresident Xi Urges Bigger Global Role for Emerging Economies