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Schaeuble says UK welcome back if Brexit were to be overturned

Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - 19:58

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German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said that the UK would be welcomed back to the European Union if the British decided they no longer wanted to quit the bloc.

[BERLIN] German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said that the UK would be welcomed back to the European Union if the British decided they no longer wanted to quit the bloc.

Mr Schaeuble, speaking in a Bloomberg Television interview in Berlin, said that "it's up the British government to take their own decisions" on Brexit. However, he said he discussed the surprise UK election outcome with Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond the day after the vote, and concluded that "we have to leave them some days" to decide on the way forward.

"It would not be helpful if we started speculation whether that will happen or not," Mr Schaeuble said, when asked if the government might reverse the decision to quit. "The British government has said we will stay with the Brexit. We take the decision as a matter of respect. But if they wanted to change their decision, of course, they would find open doors."

Even so, he said he thought "it's not very likely" the UK will go back on last year's referendum decision.

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