Monday

21st Jan 2019

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.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

"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."

Disclaimer: This article is sponsored by a third party. All opinions in this article reflect the views of the author and not of EUobserver.

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.

Help consumers take cruelty away from EU's Xmas buffet

Will commissioners Phil Hogan and Vytenis Andriukaitis help consumers take cruelty away from the EU's Christmas buffet? Some 80 MEPs have asked the EU commission to delete the requirement of minimum liver weights for foie gras

News in Brief

  1. Germany sent 8,658 asylum-seekers to other EU states
  2. Poll: Macron popularity up four percent
  3. 'Economy is broken' says Oxfam in global inequality report
  4. Vestager under pressure to allow Siemens-Alstom deal
  5. Teargas and clashes in Athens over Macedonia name change
  6. EU trade commissioner asks for green light for US talks
  7. Slovakia's commissioner takes unpaid leave to run for presidency
  8. Minority elects Lofven as prime minister of Sweden

Stakeholders' Views

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

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Partnership For Human RightsKyrgyz authorities have to immediately release human rights defender Azimjon Askarov
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersSeminar on disability and user involvement
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersInternational appetite for Nordic food policies
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Nordic Innovation House in Hong Kong
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region has chance to become world leader when it comes to start-ups
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersTheresa May: “We will not be turning our backs on the Nordic region”
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsOpen letter to Emmanuel Macron ahead of Uzbek president's visit
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsRaising key human rights concerns during visit of Turkmenistan's foreign minister
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersState of the Nordic Region presented in Brussels
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersThe vital bioeconomy. New issue of “Sustainable Growth the Nordic Way” out now
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us