• Spain's news in English
Brexit vote
Brexit divorce must be 'quick': EU founding states
"It is not a good day for Britain and the European Union but we must go on," Juncker said. Photo: AFP

Brexit divorce must be 'quick': EU founding states

DPA/The Local · 25 Jun 2016, 15:30

Published: 25 Jun 2016 12:22 GMT+02:00
Updated: 25 Jun 2016 15:30 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, hosting the six original states of the European Union in Berlin, said they were in agreement that London must not wait to start the complex procedure of extracting itself from the bloc.

"We join together in saying that this process must begin as soon as possible so we don't end up in an extended limbo period but rather can focus on the future of Europe and the work toward it."

His French counterpart Jean-Marc Ayrault said it was urgent David Cameron, who on Friday said he would resign by October, clear the way for new leadership to manage the transition out of the union.

"A new prime minister must be designated, that will take a few days but there is a certain urgency," he told reporters at the crisis talks after Britain's shock referendum to quit the EU.

In announcing his resignation by October, Cameron said it should be his successor who leads the negotiations under Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty which sets out a two-year timeframe to leave.

However Steinmeier, Ayrault, the Netherlands' Bert Koenders, Italy's Paolo Gentiloni, Belgium's Didier Reynders and Luxemburg's Jean Asselborn stressed in the German capital that time was of the essence.

"We understand and respect the result (of the referendum) and understand that Britain is now concentrating on Britain," Steinmeier said, flanked by the other ministers.

"But London has a responsibility toward more than just Britain. We must now be allowed to focus on the future of Europe and that means that after the decision taken in Britain, the process by which we negotiate Britain's exit must begin."

Koenders called for "good faith" talks with London to begin immediately: "We have to move on... we need to turn the page."

- 'Enormous challenges' -

Steinmeier had opened the meeting with a heartfelt plea for the EU to remain united.

"I am confident that these countries can also send a message that we won't let anyone take Europe from us," he said.

Story continues below…

Later in a joint statement, the ministers defended the EU's "long and successful" path since its humble beginnings in 1957.

But they acknowledged that the union needed to address the fact that "parts of our societies are not happy with how the EU works at the present time".

"The European Union stands before enormous challenges in a globalised world, which only a better European Union can grapple with," they wrote, citing migration and refugees, security, economic growth and jobs as key priorities.

They also acknowledged that among the remaining 27 member states there were differing "levels of ambition" for European integration and had "to find ways to better deal with" them.

For more news from Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

DPA/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Spain's 'Napflix' aims to bore viewers to sleep
Photo: Screengrab/ Napflix

A Spanish video platform called Napflix, designed to put people to sleep with dull content, was launched this week and its founders are on the lookout for more "monotony and repetition."

Recipe: How to make fabada - traditional Asturian bean stew
Photo: Flavio Lorenzo Sánchez/Flickr

The hearty Asturian dish is a perfect lunch on a cold day... and don't forget the crusty bread and cider!

Brit 'paedo' held on Costa del Sol after Most Wanted appeal

One of Britain's most wanted fugitives was arrested on the Costa Del Sol following a tip-off from an expat just hours after his face appeared on a public appeal.

Spain's parliament approves deficit reduction measures
Photo: Images Money/Flickr

Spanish lawmakers approved on Thursday measures to reduce the public deficit and keep it under the target agreed with the European Union.

'Cubism and War' show opens at Barcelona Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso Harlequin and Woman with a Necklace. Photo: MP

Barcelona's Picasso Museum unveiled an exhibition on "Cubism and War" on Thursday depicting how one of the most influential artistic styles of the 20th century survived the First World War.

Why this bionic limb pioneer doesn't believe in disability
Hugh Herr has been award Spain's top science prize. Photo: FPA

The Local speaks to Hugh Herr on winning Spain's top science prize and how being an amputee doesn't make him disabled.

Dine in the buff at Spain's first nudist restaurant
A buffet of organic food will be served on "human tables". Photo: Innato / Facebook

Spain's first naked dining experience is to arrive on the island of Tenerife following the success of a similar venture in London.

Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Photo: AFP

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday cancelled a bullfighting ban in Catalonia in what is likely to exacerbate tensions between Madrid and the separatist region, and between animal activists and fans of the tradition.

Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Eta members made a ceasefire declaration in January, 2011. Photo: Gara / AFP

Five years after armed separatist group Eta declared a permanent ceasefire, Basque journalist Alberto Letona is still wondering when the dialogue will begin.

Hunt for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Call Crimestoppers if you recognize these faces.

These fugitives from British justice are thought to be hiding out in Spain. Do you recognize anyone?

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
Bison found decapitated on Valencia nature reserve
Forgotten Voices: What Brits in Spain think about Brexit
One dead and 14 injured in blast at Spanish resort
Game of Thrones want extras 'with muscles' to film in Spain
Thousands march in Madrid to push for bullfighting ban
jobs available