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EU door open if Britain gives up on Brexit: Germany

AFP  |  Frankfurt Am Main 

The European Union's door remains open if changes its decision to leave the 28- member bloc, German Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said today, while acknowledging such a move is unlikely.

"If they wanted to change their decision, of course they would find open doors, but I think it's not very likely," Schaeuble told Television in his first public comments on last week's in which saw Prime Minister lose her parliamentary majority.

He noted a pro-European surge in France for President Emmanuel Macron and a youth vote in that swung sharply to the left-wing Labour Party, in favour of closer post-Brexit ties, as proof of greater support among the young.

Nevertheless, "Brexit is a decision we have to accept by the British voters," he said.

"It would not be helpful if we started speculation... We take it as a matter of fact, it's a matter of respect."

The British has been in disarray since a snap last Thursday, called by May in an effort to boost her majority but which resulted in a hung parliament.

May is scrambling to strike a deal for the support of the Northern Irish Democratic Unionist Party's (DUP) 10 lawmakers, but the clock is ticking on the two-year exit talks period she triggered in late March.

"My preoccupation is that time is passing -- it's passing quicker than anyone believes... That's why we're ready to start very quickly. I can't negotiate with myself," Michel Barnier, the EU's Brexit negotiator, told European newspapers including The Financial Times.

"Let's start the negotiation," Schaeuble told today.

"We will minimise the potential damage and maximise the mutual benefit... At the end we will always come to reasonable decisions.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, June 13 2017. 22:22 IST